Real estate entrepreneur Mark Hall is pitching the construction of a new USL stadium in Concord, CA, with plans to place a team in the facility as early as 2021.
Late last year, it was announced that Hall–a Walnut Creek-based developer–was working to launch an Oakland East Bay USL team that would play at a new stadium. His effort was later attached to the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum site, where he pitched a proposal that could include a new soccer-specific stadium as part of a larger development concept. However, Hall is now focused on his proposed Concord USL stadium.
The current vision calls for an 18,000-seat stadium, to be constructed on property near the Concord BART Stop and anchor a development that includes hotels, housing, and other features. Hall is expected to release more details on the plan in the coming months, but he believes that Concord could be a strong fit for a new USL stadium and team. More from the San Francisco Examiner:
Instead, Hall wants to bring his USL expansion franchise to a lot near the Concord BART station. A motion allowing “advanced exploration” of the proposal was passed by Concord’s city council in late May, but the city remains in the reviewal stage and hasn’t formally approved the project.
“[The project] also includes a convention center and a couple of hotels and some additional housing on the downtown Concord BART station,” Hall said. “That’s something we’re working on with both BART and the city of Concord, who are the primary land owners.”
According to a Concord council spokesperson, no permit application has been filled out and no future meetings regarding the initiative are currently scheduled. Hall will need to get approval from BART in addition to the city council in order to acquire the land necessary for his proposed stadium.
Hall’s firm is working on graphic visualizations for the stadium and its surrounding developments. He said those should be available in the next couple of months.
The gamble with building a soccer stadium in Concord is getting fans from across the East Bay to attend matches. The city seemingly offers a less built-in core market for a team, but Hall claimed being just steps from BART would alleviate that concern and bring in a wide swath of soccer enthusiasts. He’s also confident youth soccer participation in the area can translate to a larger-than-expected fanbase.
The Coliseum site was an intriguing fit for a number of reasons, but its future is uncertain given that Major League Baseball’s Oakland A’s continue to search for a new ballpark. The Coliseum and Howard Terminal are two sites currently being considered by the A’s, who have yet to make a final decision. It remains to be seen if Hall’s proposal comes together, but focusing on Concord allows him to continue making plans for the USL facility and club while exploring an East Bay market that could be an intriguing fit for his stadium/development concept.
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