Columbus Crew SC confirms that it is continuing its discussions about a new stadium, viewing a modern facility as a way to remain viable.
Earlier this month, Crew SC sent an email to fans that included a survey about a potential new stadium. It is still early in the process, but the email sent a signal that the team is looking into replacing MAPFRE Stadium, which opened in 1999 as the MLS’ first soccer-specific facility.
In that sense, it could hardly be argued that MAPFRE Stadium is old, but the MLS landscape has changed rapidly. As we noted when news first broke of Crew SC’s email, more and more soccer-specific/state-of-art venues have been constructed around the league. With expansion likely on the horizon, the emphasis on new facilities will only increase.
Anthony Precourt, investor-operator for Crew SC, noted that point in a recent interview with The Columbus Dispatch:
“Orlando is coming online this season with a brand-new soccer-specific stadium,” Precourt told The Dispatch in a phone interview. “Atlanta is going to be playing in Mercedes Benz (Stadium). Minnesota is in the process of building a brand-new facility. D.C. United is very close to finalizing and actually shovels going in the dirt in Buzzard (Point). New England is in the later innings of a new stadium.
“We need to keep up with the Joneses. The high-water mark is getting stronger and as a club we’r e going to need to think about how we can be relevant and sustainable and a great entertainment option for our fans in Columbus.”
Again, it seems that Crew SC is still very early in the process. However, chances are that discussions about a new facility with continue, especially as the team considers the league’s future.
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