Willets Point Soccer Stadium Included in Proposal

Orange County SC

A 25,000-seat soccer-specific stadium could be part of the redevelopment of New York City’s Willets Point, as it is included in one of two development scenarios released by the city. 

The effort to redevelop Willets Point has been taking place for years, as developers and city officials explore uses for the area near the New York Mets’ Citi Field that was once home to numerous auto repair shops. Those discussions took a new turn this week, when officials released two development scenarios that a task force recommended to the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

One of those scenarios would include a Willets Point soccer stadium, to be surrounded by new development that includes community services, residential units, and more. The other concept does not include the stadium, instead placing a greater emphasis on mixed-use offerings. Neither would come to fruition in the immediate future, as the reveal this week is part of a longer process that could take time to play out before it is determined what development plan moves forward. More from Crain’s New York Business:

One calls for a soccer stadium of up to 25,000 seats, according to the documents. Parking for the venue would be shared with Citi Field. In addition, the plan calls for retail, open space, a school, new police and fire stations and a residential building.

The second scenario follows a more typical mixed-use format that would produce six blocks of residential development, retail, open space, a high school and a fire station along with a health center.

The development corporation said that the scenarios are being used by Related and Sterling to draw up more specific plans, which will then be submitted to the city and subject to further public comment.

Throughout the years, Willets Point has been at the center of various scenarios involving a professional sports venue, including previous discussions about a new New York Islanders (NHL) arena and a potential pro soccer stadium. That includes rumors surrounding its possible use for a New York City FC stadium and recent indications of a potential USL Championship franchise, but it remains to be seen if a soccer stadium will fit into long-term plans for the area.

Image of USL action courtesy  USL and Orange County SC.

RELATED STORIES: Willets Points Redevelopment Moving Forward

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