DC And DC United Strike A Stadium Deal

4:24 PM, Jul 25, 2013   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA) -- DC's Soccer team has a reason to stay in town now.  

The District and DC United have struck a tentative deal of building a new stadium in Southwest, only a few blocks from Nats Park. After a year of talks, the $300-million deal is closer than ever.

DC United has been playing at RFK stadium since the 90's. The proposed site is at 2nd and T Streets in SW.

Through the years, the team has talked about moving out of the area including Maryland and Virginia but it looks like the parties are in agreement and are staying put if the deal goes through.

Mayor Vincent Gray says,"DC United will be staying right here in our nation's capital."

Mayor Gray made the announcement at a press conference Thursday morning.  Fans approved. 

"I think it's great we've been waiting for such a long time to have home of our own.," said one of the fans.

The proposed new state-of-the-art soccer stadium would be built close to Nats Park and seat at least 20,000 fans. It is a $300-million tentative agreement, half of which will be land deals. DC United will foot the rest of the $150 million dollars to build the stadium.

Jason Levien, DC United Co-Owner said, "It's a great day for our community, this ward, which will see benefits of the economic development that's going to come."

But it might come at the expense of longtime residents such as Geraldine Wright who might not be able to afford new development.

Geraldine Wright said, "Where are we going to go? What are we going to do. We didn't have too much say about Nats Park, but I guess the city wants what it wants and gets what it wants to have, right?"

What's evolving, the Mayor says, is a sport complex in the District.

What's missing? Football.

Gray said, "I would love to see a football stadium built there to bring our football team back to the city."

 

If the deal goes through, the more than 50-year-old, stadium will be defunct. But there's always that hope for a new football stadium in the district.  If there are any runover costs to build the soccer stadium, DC united will pay for it.

Part of the deal includes giving up the Frank Reeves government building at 14th and U Streets. The building which Councilman Marion Barry had a major hand in building and would be relocated in Barry's Ward 8. 

If all goes well the stadium would be ready by the start of the season in 2016.

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