Dallas Fort Worth International (DFW) Airport is the first airport in the United States to offer a multi-sports training and events facility for top-tier athletes and customers as part of its growing portfolio of commercial developments. In 2016, six-time NBA All-Star Jermaine O’Neal founded Drive Nation with a vision to train athletes from across the country and around the world, and DFW provided the ideal location and infrastructure for this sports facility.
“Drive Nation’s vision of providing total student-athlete performance training, skills development and emotional wellness, leadership and character programs is now open to amateur athletes throughout the Dallas Fort Worth area,” said O’Neal, founder of Drive Nation. “The ultimate goal is to develop kids for college. We are excited to be right at the Airport where we can easily reach thousands of student-athletes every year and connect them to world-class coaches in one of the most advanced facilities for training.”
Located on 16.2 acres of land at DFW Airport, the $10.4 million facility is the first of its kind at an airport and will be home to O’Neal’s Drive Nation Skills Academy for boys and girls in third through 12th grades. The facility is located near the South entrance of the airport.
The facility features more than 90,000 square feet of indoor space, including six basketball and 10 volleyball courts, player lounges, a 10,000 square foot weight room, performance training area, and a 50-yard all-purpose indoor turf area. The turf field along with a 55-yard speed track will be programmed for activities such as football, soccer, and sports performance training. Adjacent to the turf are strength components and HydroWorx hot/cold aquatherapy tubs and training center.
The facility layout also includes mezzanine viewing spaces, café and seating areas, multi-purpose rooms, teams and conference rooms, and other supporting areas.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Jermaine and Drive Nation to DFW, knowing that his team and the DFW team have a vision for serving people through personal relationships and leading-edge technology,” said Khaled Naja, executive vice president of Infrastructure and Development for DFW Airport. “Drive Nation will be a great asset for our region, bringing in teams and families throughout the year.”
O’Neal, a resident of Southlake, TX, is focused on giving back to the community through sports. He will serve on the coaching staff and brings more than two decades of professional experience to the Drive Nation Skills Academy. The vision for the Drive Nation Sports Complex and the Drive Nation Skills Academy is to create well-rounded, dynamic players through physical training, skills development and elite-level coaching.
While building the complex at DFW Airport, the Academy temporarily operated from Southlake Carroll Senior High School in Southlake since March 2017. The new facility is managed by Sports Facilities Management, an outsourced management firm.
Drive Nation will host year-round youth recreational leagues, adult leagues, adult boot camp training, USA Volleyball tournaments, national and regional AAU tournaments and an annual Nike EYBL tournament. Drive Nation aims to attract some of the top high school student-athletes and college coaches in the country.