May 16, 2024 - News

Cleveland Soccer Group releases renderings of proposed downtown women's soccer stadium

Rendering of soccer stadium with city skyline in background

Rendering: Cleveland Soccer Group/OSPORTS

Cleveland Soccer Group on Thursday released renderings and a video of a proposed new downtown soccer stadium.

Why it matters: The stadium is a key requirement, if not a prerequisite, for winning an expansion team in the National Women's Soccer League. Bids are due in June.

By the numbers: The stadium is projected to cost $150 million. CSG is lobbying for roughly $90 million in public financing via Cleveland admissions taxes and public bonds.

What they're saying: To make their case, backers are promoting the facility as a nationally unique economic engine.

  • "The stadium would mark a milestone as the nation's first private-public partnership dedicated to a sports facility with women's sports at its core," CSG said in a press release.
  • The State of Ohio kicked in $1 million in its most recent appropriations bill.

The other side: "When you ask economists if [the public] should fund sports stadiums, they can't say 'no' fast enough," says economist J.C. Bradbury.

Zoom in: Located just south of Progressive Field downtown, the proposed stadium would initially have a capacity of 12,500 and could host as many as 60 events per year, including college athletics and concerts.

The big picture: "By bringing women's soccer to Cleveland, we're not just investing in a game. We're investing in a future," Destination Cleveland CEO David Gilbert said in a statement.

  • "Our track record of leveraging sports infrastructure for economic growth speaks volumes, and this can build on that momentum."
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