Work began at the potential site of a new D.C. United stadium in the Buzzard Point area, as the District of Columbia and the MLS team start the process of finalizing the plan for a 2018 opening.
The ceremonial groundbreaking, where a crew tore into the side of an abandoned metal structure at corner of 2nd and S streets, does start the clock on the project. D.C. United officials say they plan for the 2017 to be their last one at RFK Stadium, which pretty much guarantees a 2018 opening for the new stadium. The current plan calls for a 20,000-capacity stadium (19,400 seats, 600 standing room) at first, with the capacity to add 3,000 seats in the future. A total of 32 suites is planned: seven at field level to the west side and five in the northeast corner. From the Washington Post:
“We are moving forward expeditiously,” United managing general partner Jason Levien said. “We’re excited about being in the new stadium in ’18. Next year will be our last year at RFK, which will be an exciting year from a nostalgia standpoint for our fans and the community. But in ’18 we are going to get our new home, and we’re all systems go to do that.”
At the moment, Levien said United is focused on the design and the implementation of it. “We like what we’re seeing,” he said. “We think it’s going to be a terrific venue.”
The exact opening date, as well as a name for the $300-million facility, may not be announced until a year from now.
Renderings courtesy D.C. United.