A major renovation to Dillon Stadium for a Hartford USL club is moving forward, as the Hartford City Council approved the plans on Monday.
The state bond commission has already approved $10 million in borrowing to fund some major work to the facility, including new seating, upgraded facilities, and a new turf. Once renovated, Dillon Stadium would begin hosting a USL club that is backed by the Hartford Sports Group, an entity led by local businessman Bruce Mandel.
Under the terms approved by the city council, the Capital Region Development Authority (CRDA) will be tasked with managing Dillon Stadium for at least five years. More from The Hartford Courant:
The contract requires the Capital Region Development Authority to manage Dillon for at least five years. Hartford Sports would pay $300,000 annually to cover overhead expenses, and another $25,000 into a fund for neighborhood activities. High school football teams and other organizations that want to use the stadium must appeal to the city.
Hartford Sports would have access to the facility for 20 years. After the first five, its annual payments will be adjusted for inflation. The group is also responsible for the cost of police patrols, utilities and maintenance.
CRDA will oversee the redevelopment of the structure.
“Tonight’s vote by the city council is an important step toward bringing Dillon Stadium back to life as a community asset,” Mayor Luke Bronin said Monday. “Our focus will remain on protecting the interests of our residents as we finalize an agreement that brings professional soccer to Hartford and contributes to the revitalization of Coltsville.”
The Hartford USL club could begin play at Dillon Stadium in 2019. Dillon Stadium is a venue that was originally constructed under the auspices of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration.
RELATED STORIES: Dillon Stadium Renovation Talks Continue; State Commission Approves $10M for Dillon Stadium Overhaul; Agency Supports Hartford USL Pitch for Dillon Stadium; Three Plans Pitched for Dillon Stadium; Investors Pitch Hartford USL Team at Dillon Stadium; Hartford Seeks Proposals for Dillon Stadium