As the application deadline for MLS expansion approaches, FC Cincinnati is considering possible sites for a proposed new stadium.
Coming off of a successful first year at Nippert Stadium, FC Cincinnati officials are putting together the pieces of their MLS bid. One of the biggest hurdles for Cincinnati reaching the MLS is the stadium, as the league has expressed skepticism that Nippert Stadium can offer a long-term solution for the franchise.
While upgrades to the stadium are taking place as the USL club prepares for its second season, FC Cincinnati will have to address the stadium issue in its pitch to the MLS, which is due at the end of this month. A major part of that process is considering a list of potential sites in Cincinnati where a new stadium could be constructed.
FC Cincinnati president and general manager Jeff Berding is not offering any specifics on possible locations, but the Cincinnati Enquirer is reporting on some possibilities:
By month’s end, the franchise is expected to provide a list of Greater Cincinnati sites to MLS where a new soccer stadium and related facilities could be built. Jeff Berding, team president and general manager, has declined to comment on the sites that will appear on the short list.
But one Cincinnati site – the former home of Milacron in Oakley – is likely to get a long look from team officials based on its potential to meet MLS requirements, according to an Enquirer analysis of property records.
Other sites mentioned by the Enquirer include Spinney Field, Queensgate South, Riverside Yard, and Spring Grove Avenue, as the paper concluded that developments at those locations could meet the MLS’ standards.
By setting attendance records during its debut season in the USL, FC Cincinnati undoubtedly placed itself among the more intriguing expansion candidates. However, as MLS commissioner Don Garber indicated during his visit to the city in November, developing a new stadium plan is a must, and making site selection one of the focal points as MLS backers look to make their case for Cincinnati.
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