Las Vegas is on the edge of obtaining a major league soccer team. Justin Findlay is trying his hardest to bring soccer to Las Vegas.
He stated, “The best sport in the world is available. We can get a team right here. Guys, this is possible. It is really, really possible.”
Findlay Sports and Entertainment Group announced in May their plans to pursue a major league soccer team. Findlay met with MLS Deputy Commission Mark Abbott. The initial problem of obtaining a soccer team is the constructing a stadium that can withstand the Vegas heat. This is no longer the problem. Abbott met with Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman to take a look at the downtown area.
On July 18, an artist’s renderings of the proposed stadiums were released. The stadium will hold 24,000 fans. There will be a vinyl retractable roof and air conditioning vents every three rows in the stands. Every seat will be shaded. Even on the hottest days in the Vegas summer, it will feel like the temperature is in the low 80s for soccer players and fans. The proposed stadium would be built in Symphony Park.
During game days, the roof will be kept closed to keep the air cool inside. The surface of the field will be turf, and the sides of the stadium will be open. It will look similar to Centre Court at Wimbledon.
Plans won’t be finalized until after Aug. 20. The stadium has to be approved by the Las Vegas City Council. The estimated funding for the project is between $150 million and $200 million. The official cost has not been released to the public. Other stadiums in the US with an open air facility have ranged from $70 million to $200 million.
The council has to review the financing plan. If it is approved, Findlay Sports and Entertainment Group should by hearing from MLS by the end of this year. If the council denies the stadium, the project would end there.
If the stadium gets approved, the money would come from bonds. The bonds would be paid off by the tax collected on the sale of tickets to events at the stadium.
Las Vegas is competing with multiple cities for the major league soccer team: Sacramento, Minneapolis, Austin, Texas and San Antonio.
Currently there are not many air-conditioned stadiums in the US. If the council approves this stadium, this could be a major step for Las Vegas. It always seemed that the weather was too hot in Las Vegas for the city to have a major sports team. Phoenix changed everything when the city developed the first air-conditioned football stadium.
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