Business Community Anticipates Sacramento MLS Stadium Project

Sacramento Republic FC stadium rendering April 2019-2

With Sacramento Republic FC expected to be named an MLS expansion team, the business community is anticipating the benefits a new stadium and surrounding development could produce.

It is expected that, on Monday, MLS will officially announce its approval of Sacramento’s bid to become the league’s 29th team. Backed by a contingent that includes lead investor Ron Burkle, Sacramento’s bid includes plans for a new $252 million soccer-specific stadium that is being positioned as an anchor of a larger redevelopment of the city’s downtown railyards.

Over time, it is expected that the 244-acre site will be built out to feature several amenities surrounding the stadium, including new residences, hotels, a Kaiser Permanente medical campus, and more. Given the complexities involved in redeveloping such a large site, it could take many years for the impact of the development to be felt–something we noted when discussing the stadium’s role in the project earlier this year–but with long-awaited MLS approval likely just around the corner, members of the region’s business community are touting benefits that they feel the stadium could produce in the future. More from KRCA:

“We expect the new soccer stadium to be a catalyst for downtown much like Golden 1 Center was,” said Tim Murphy, Chief Executive Officer of the Sacramento Regional Builders Exchange. “It’s anticipated there will be about 20,000 new residents coming into this part of downtown.”

New homes are just what’s needed in Sacramento, a city with a short supply of housing. And living near the soccer stadium will produce some real benefits, especially for existing homeowners, according to real estate appraiser Ryan Lundquist.

“It’s going to be walkable,” Lundquist said. “There’s going to be shops and conveniences, Kaiser. I mean so many things that are going to boost value. The immediate area, I think, is something that is going to be positive for property values.”

Michael Ault, executive director of the Downtown Sacramento Partnership, said, “We’ve got an opportunity not just with MLS, but through the development of the railyards, to create almost doubling the size of downtown.”

Steps have have been taken in recent months to solidify plans for the privately financed stadium, with the Sacramento City Council voting in April to approve a $33 million incentive package for the plan. With the announcement, the city is expected to step forward with changes to the incentive package to allow the ownership group more flexibility, including a conversion of part of the inventive package to a loan that could be paid back via increased property taxes generated in the area.

MLS is expected to formally announce its approval of the expansion bid in Sacramento on Monday. This would follow MLS’s approval of St. Louis’s bid in August, with St. Louis expected to launch as the circuit’s 28th team in 2022.

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