FC Cincinnati received necessary city approvals for its West End Stadium project after agreeing to a deal with residents displaced by construction.
There has been contentious debate about the FC Cincinnati stadium project and related approvals–including a rezoning request–that the club was looking to receive from the city. Residents that will have to vacate buildings owned by the club had been fighting the rezoning request, calling for a resolution on housing issues before any plans moved forward.
Uncertainty loomed over the project into Thursday, but the club cut an agreement with the tenants after hours of negotiation. Little is known about the agreement, aside from the fact that it includes relocation assistance and gives tenants more time to vacate the buildings owned by the club. The Cincinnati City Council was apparently satisfied with the terms, however, as it approved three measures for the project–including the rezoning request, permission to build a parking lot on team-owned land near the stadium, and the addition of more property to a previously approved land sale between the city and the club.
Construction of the stadium has been underway, but it would have been halted within 30 days had these approvals not been granted, leaving city and club officials relieved that a resolution with the tenants was achieved.More from the Cincinnati Enquirer:
Councilman P.G. SIttenfeld, behind the scenes, pressed for the team to do more.
“The goal is to be a city where private enterprise prospers and where people do too,” he said. “Today we showed we can grow and develop, but do it in the right way, the humane way.”
And from Councilman Greg Landsman, who met with tenants last week, “I’m relieved that the tenants are relieved and grateful that everyone worked together on this. That’s the only way to get things done.”
FC Cincinnati lawyer Tom Tepe said the team was grateful for the extra negotiation time and for the approval.
The West End Stadium has been planned for a 2021 opening, with FC Cincinnati slated to spend the 2019 and 2020 MLS seasons at the University of Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium.
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