Tampa women's soccer team announces temporary stadium plan
Tampa's first professional women's soccer team is aiming to play its first season at Howard W. Blake High School's stadium overlooking the Hillsborough River.
What's happening: Super League Tampa Bay officials announced Wednesday that they're seeking a partnership with Hillsborough County Public Schools to use the high school as the team's temporary home when the season kicks off next August.
- The plan is contingent on school board approval. The vote is set for the Oct. 17 meeting.
Why it matters: The stadium would put the new team, which was announced in May, in a prime location close to downtown and near amenities like the Tampa Riverwalk, Armature Works and the University of Tampa, officials said.
Zoom in: If school board members approve the partnership, the soccer team will pay to expand the stadium capacity from 1,800 to 5,000 and install FIFA-approved turf, among other upgrades, according to a news release.
- Team president Christina Unkel declined to specify how much those improvements would cost but said it would be "in the millions," according to the Tampa Bay Times.
- No taxpayer dollars will be used toward the changes.
Zoom out: A permanent site hasn't been announced yet, but developer and team co-owner Darryl Shaw previously said his dream is to build the stadium in Ybor City.
- Plans to build a training facility in the historic neighborhood are already underway.
What's next: Team leaders will announce the club's name, colors and logo in the coming weeks. Their design included a public input process that closed in June.
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