MLS- Expansion

Report: St. Louis stadium funding bill given new life


Just as MLS expansion to St. Louis dropped into a gloomy state, a new sense of hope was pumped into the city’s bid to bring one of the four new franchises in MLS to Missouri.

An altered bill for stadium funding is set to be presented to a committee hearing on Thursday. Instead of the $80 million contribution from the city that was asked for originally, the group looking to bring MLS to St. Louis is asking for $60 million in the revised presentation.

The project is supposed to cost $200 million, and the updated figure of  $60 million from new tax revenue is something that the St. Louis mayor’s office considers very possible. The bill has a deadline of Tuesday to be passed in order for it to be on the April 4 ballot where taxpayers will decide what’s best for the city.

St. Louis is one of 10 markets vying for the 25th, 26th, 27th and 28th franchises in MLS. Charlotte, Cincinnati, Detroit, Nashville, Raleigh-Durham, Sacramento, San Antonio, San Diego and Tampa/St. Petersburg are the other candidates for expansion.

  • bottlcaps

    If this involves any funding OR even financial actions from the State, it will be dead in the water. If involved the City funding it by new taxes for new revenue all I have to say is that there must be a proclivity for ordinary people to give money to rich people to allow them to make even more money or make decisions that affect you financially and usually not to your benefit. The fact that the Principal person in the ownership group is himself a billionaire and has access to investment capital of almost a 100Billion. His house in Brookline Ma sit on almost the same amount of acreage needed for a MLS stadium and costs almost (joke)as much, is telling. There is absolutely no reason this owners group can not internally fiance the stadium, except for the reason to shuffle the funding needed to the shoulders people or the city who cannot afford it, so they can take the money that they are not using to fund the stadium and invest it financial vehicles that will pay them a lot more.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Quit Whining About Soccer in the US

      I hear you and agree with you, but there are two sides to it.

      Let’s say super rich guy living in old Boston neighborhood, doesn’t want to lose money. Fair enough.
      Let’s say as a community St Louis does want a soccer team, but if they pay $200 million for stadium, super rich guy DOES lose money. It doesn’t work financially.

      Maybe you are right, no reason they can’t internally fund, ie make money while paying for the whole thing….but if not….Can they work together?

      I don’t see why not and I am not really for public money for private stadiums.


      • don Lamb

        This is the correct answer. Private-public partnerships are very common these days, and it makes sense since both parties benefit from the project. Why should a municipality help a billionaire? Because the community will benefit from that billionaire’s investment. Why should a billionaire invest hundreds of millions in a municipality? Because they can benefit from that investment.

        There is a middle ground that should be reached. Those who say, “No public money should ever be spent to build a stadium,” aren’t seeing the whole picture.


    • Christoph

      Bottlcaps are you from st louis? Because the info you said couldn’t be further from the truth.


      • bottlcaps

        I’m not from St.L, but I worked at the NGIC for a couple of years, so I know the area. I’d like to know what part is not true? Like St. Louis not needing the money, and the ownership does? The Facts are that the ownership group is more than capable of internal financing and everybody, including the MLS knows this. They are preying on St. Louis, whom just lost the Rams and are afraid of losing another sports franchise if they don’t contribute enough to subsidize the stadium. I read the pro-forma and the economic analysis on this project and its not a really good deal for the City. The City’s ROI on this is upside down after 20yrs , but comes back after year 28 and make some money at year 32 which is where the analysis ends.Stadium and other capital buildings are usually amortized after 20 years and if I bank saw this they would give it a thumbs down, not because it does not make money, but not enough and not at a high enough return.

        I have looked at literally dozens of economic pro-formas wanting to use public subsidy in my old job as a urban and redevelopment planner, and this one would be a thumbs down as it serves to enrich the ownership group by assigning risk to another party (the public). One of the things the MLS wants is an ownership group that wants to invest in a team, as well as the city. It stops short though of calling for a public subsidy for the MLS, but lets the ownership group do that.

        Its no coincident that LAFC, Minn U, and the Miami stadium all propose to use no public funds on construction. But they all will receive indirect subsidies in tax rebates, lease rates and other intrinsic help. But no one is asking for cash to build the stadium. But St. Louis is.

        The short and skinny here is the ownership group want to suck at that public teat like the NFL did. But we live in another era. Public funding for necessary services are being cut in cities like St.L and while urban blight an redevelopment are a public good, no one should ask for a public subsidy when it isn’t needed or when its used to enrich themselves.


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