When it comes to a proposed MLS stadium in Nashville, officials are still seeking to address details regarding the site and funding.
One of 12 candidates in the mix for an MLS expansion franchise, Nashville has previously identified a potential stadium site. Earlier this year, Nashville Metro mayor Megan Barry announced that The Fairgrounds Nashville was the proposed site for the facility. Months later, that remains the case, but the exact location within The Fairgrounds Nashville has yet to be determined, as officials are considering a parking lot north of the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway and an elevated site west of the speedway that is currently occupied by various structures.
Determining the spot that is used for the stadium will be key to the process, but how the facility will be funded remains a major question. Barry has called for a private-public partnership in financing the stadium, but a more exact proposal on how the venue would be funded might not be released until this fall. More from The Tennessean:
In the mayor’s recently proposed 2017-18 capital improvements budget, Barry’s administration has listed $150 million in proposed revenue bonds for a new municipal soccer facility. It marks an increase over the $50 million earmarked for a soccer stadium in last year’s capital improvements budget.
This six-year capital budget doesn’t represent a formal funding proposal, but serves as a placeholder for possible consideration next year for a soccer stadium paid for with city assistance.
Barry in January discussed a goal of presenting a stadium financing plan by the end of June, but [Barry’s chief operating officer Rich] Riebeling said the hope is to now have a proposal this fall.
While Nashville Metro officials and MLS backers await the announcement of a more detailed funding plan, there has been progress in other areas. John Ingram, who is leading the expansion bid, has acquired the majority stake in Nashville SC, the USL franchise that is set to debut next year. Boosters of the expansion bid also unveiled an effort last month to set a state attendance record for soccer match at a CONCACAF Gold Cup contest that is scheduled for Nissan Stadium in July.
Photo of 2013 MLS All-Star Game by Brett Flanders via flickr.com.
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