St. Louis MLS soccer team challenges
ST LOUIS/December 29, 2016 (STLRealEstate.News) Many of the St. Louis sport’s fans around the city are stating its time they earn a Major League Soccer (MLS) team for the year’s ahead. Though the bestowment is possible, there are many obstacles the city will need to overcome legally and financially to make it a reality. The proposed $200 million MLS stadium, targeted to be built just west of Union Station, has several hurdles looming, some a lot bigger than others. Nevertheless, all of them need to be checked off before this stadium is officially erected.
For starters, developers need to get in there and get friendly with Governor-elect Eric Greiten. The governor previously discussed his lack of support for public funding for the project. Without wooing the governor, the $40 million in tax credits remains up in the air. At the same time, developers need to firm up a financing plan for presentation and approval. No one knows how the finances behind this kind of long-term construction work, so providing a detailed financial plan will put a lot of worried minds at ease. The current plan calls for $200 million, $40 million of which will hopefully come from tax credits, and $80 million from the city of St. Louis.
Once that is done, the developers also need to apply for an MLS expansion franchise. MLS commissioner Don Garber has announced that January 31 will be the deadline for interested cities to throw their hats into the soccer ring. Then, once the application deadline passes and the St. Louis one is reviewed, they need to actually meet with this MLS expansion committee. The committee will consider several important factors like population, attendance, long-term finance, and appropriate contracts.
It may sound like a lot, but it is possible if city officials and developers get serious about their application process in the next month. If they wait until January 31, they’ll be looking at another year of limbo.
Contributing Editor: Alexandra R. Fasulo
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