A 19,500-seat soccer stadium will soon be a part of Downtown Orlando’s landscape and home to current USL Pro Champions Orlando City Soccer when they join Major League Soccer (MLS) as an expansion team in the 2015 season – and become the City’s second major-league sports franchise. The new stadium is scheduled to open prior to the 2016 Major League Soccer season and will be located on Church Street, one block from the Amway Center.
Public funding for the soccer stadium is covered by $20 million in tourist taxes, $20 million from the City of Orlando (and smaller amounts from other jurisdictions/neighboring counties) and Orlando City Soccer’s contribution of $30 million toward construction and $675,000 annually over the next 25 years. The City will convert the annual payments into $10 million to offset upfront construction costs. The new stadium is expected to bring a $1.2 billion impact to the region over the next 30 years.
Orlando City Soccer will serve as developer of the new MLS stadium which is expected to be completed before the team’s 2016 season. The facility will be owned and operated by the City of Orlando. The stadium is being designed by Populous, a world-renowned architecture firm that has designed a range of MLS and international soccer stadiums.
Plans feature a 360-degree lower bowl, full roof canopies covering all seats, natural grass playing surface, fan plaza areas and multiple VIP hospitality areas including a Club Lounge, up to 38 luxury suites and an elevated 360-degree balcony style bar within the scoreboard structure. The supporters section features standing rails and an exclusive open-air ‘pub-style’ area on an elevated concourse. A larger-than-life lion statue will face Church Street and turn ceremoniously to face the stadium during matches.
In addition to Orlando City Soccer games, the stadium will also play host to various NCAA sporting events including soccer and lacrosse as well as concerts and festivals.
For more information, visit OrlandoCitySoccer.com.