UPDATED: June 8, 2015 9:54 p.m.
WASHINGTON — The deal has been finalized to build a soccer stadium for D.C. United, District officials say.
Monday’s announcement follows a report last week that the Major League Soccer franchise was looking at potential sites in northern Virginia.
The soccer-only stadium will be located on Buzzard Point in Southwest, D.C., a largely neglected industrial site that’s about a mile away from Nationals Park. District leaders had already approved spending $140 million to acquire the land for the site and handing out another $40 million in tax breaks. The team will spend $150 million to build the stadium itself.
WNEW’s Cameron Thompson broke the news to D.C. United goalkeeper Travis Worra at the Women’s World Cup watch party in D.C.
“Really? Wow, I didn’t even know that,” Worra said. “That’s huge, to be here in D.C. We are D.C. United and to represent this city and this area is amazing and I think it’s going to be awesome to have a soccer-specific stadium of our own.”
Worra says he was following the stadium news throughout the year, but says he thinks building in the downtown area is better.
“Being downtown we’re gonna be able to pull more of the millennials that live downtown and it’s gonna be right off the Metro line and easy to get to and there’s no excuse not to come out and watch one of the top teams in the league,” Worra says.
Mayor Muriel Bowser says the finalized stadium deal includes “better financial protections” for District residents.
“Thanks to the hard work of the District government and D.C. United staff, a world-class soccer stadium will call Buzzard Point home – for good,” Bowser said.
“This is a significant step forward for D.C. United and the District of Columbia,” said D.C. United Managing General Partner Jason Levien. “We commend the tireless efforts of Mayor Bowser, Deputy Mayor Kenner and the administration. More than anything, we thank our fans and supporters for their dedication and commitment to the club.”
“I am pleased we finally have the soccer stadium locked down,” said D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson. “The Council cleared the way last December, approving the deal and providing the funding. The District has been ready to go for months, and this agreement ensures the team stays located with its fan base.”
D.C. United currently plays in aging RFK Stadium.
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