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Orlando City Stadium

Orlando City Stadium
Lions Den
Location Church Street and Parramore Avenue, Orlando, Florida[1][2]
Coordinates [2][3]
Public transit SunRail Church Street Station
Lynx 700 Church Street
Owner Orlando City SC
Operator Orlando City SC
Executive suites 31[4]
Capacity 25,500[5]
Acreage 10
Surface Grass
Scoreboard Panasonic[6]
Construction
Broke ground October 16, 2014[7]
Opened 2016[8]
Construction cost $155 million[9]
Architect Populous[10]
Project manager ICON Venue Group[11]
General contractor Barton Malow[11]
Tenants
Orlando City SC (MLS) (2016–future)
Orlando Pride (NWSL) (2016–future)[12]
NCAA Women's College Cup Championship (2016–2017)[13]

Orlando City Stadium is an under-construction soccer-specific stadium in downtown Orlando, Florida. It will be the home venue for the Orlando City SC, which entered Major League Soccer (MLS) as an expansion franchise in 2015, and their National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) sister club the Orlando Pride. The stadium was expected to cost $110 million, however after announcing updated plans, this cost rose to $155 million. It is expected to open for the latter stages of the 2016 MLS season.[8][12] Orlando City will play at the Citrus Bowl until its completion.[14]

Contents

  • History 1
    • Design 1.1
  • References 2
  • External links 3

History

In April 2013, the City of Orlando purchased downtown land for $8.2 million to be used towards the construction of a $110 million MLS soccer stadium.[15] However, in May, the Florida House of Representatives failed to vote on a bill that had passed the Senate that would have provided up to $30 million in state funds towards the stadium project. Rawlins responded by expressing his intent to find alternative funding and keep seeking MLS expansion.[16]

The Orlando downtown soccer stadium moved closer to securing funding on August 8, 2013, when Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer reached an agreement on a deal to provide financial support for a variety of Orlando projects including the new MLS soccer stadium.[17] The last piece in stadium funding was an October 2013 vote on using an existing tourism tax to fund the final quarter of the $80 million stadium project.[18] On October 22, 2013, the Orange County Board of Commissioners voted 5-2 to approve the use of $20 million in tourist development tax funds to build an $84 million multi-purpose soccer stadium in downtown Orlando.[19]

On December 11, 2013, the NCAA announced that the 2016 & 2017 NCAA Women's College Cup Championship would be held at the new stadium. [13]

On August 4, 2014, the team announced that the stadium location would be moved one block west, to avoid having a delay to the opening day, due to Faith Deliverance Temple fighting the city's eminent-domain claim. The new location will result in the closure of Parramore Ave. between Church St. and Central Blvd., as the stadium will be built right on top of where the road currently runs.[2][3]

Orlando City Stadium is scheduled to be completed for the 2016 season. The club will play their home matches at Citrus Bowl in 2015.[20]

On May 29, 2015, Orlando City SC's owners announced that the stadium would be privately funded by Orlando City SC and not the city. They also announced they would upgrade the stadium's capacity from 19,000 seats, to somewhere between 25,000 and 28,000 seats. The new plan was unveiled on July 31, increasing capacity to 25,500 by adding seats to the south end to maximize seats without major design changes that would set back the project by an additional year.[21]

Design

On December 11, 2012, the team released artistic renderings of the stadium.[22] On September 30, 2013, the architectural firm Woods Bagot released their drawings of the stadium on their website. The team announced that these drawings were released without their knowledge or input, and that they had not selected an architect yet. Woods Bagot proceed to remove the images from their website.[23] The design phase began on January 7, 2014, when Mayor Buddy Dyer and some of the Orlando City SC staff traveled to Kansas City to begin working with the design firm Populous.[10]

The original renderings of the stadium proposed 18,000 seats, including 2,500 club seats. It would also have 300 seats in specialty suites. The stadium’s square footage will be about 290,000 square feet, with 120,000 square feet devoted to the bowl. It is also supposedly going to have bars, retail shops, and restaurants.[24]

On June 10, 2014, renderings of the stadium as well as more information about it were released. The stadium will have an open plaza, where those passing by can see inside, since the field will be 10 feet below street level.[5] It will have a seating capacity of 19,500, with the structural ability to expand to 25,000 in the future. The field will be grass, with canopies over fans to protect them from the elements and to increase noise levels. A four times life size lion sculpture will overlook the entrance.[5] Just before a game begins, the lion will rotate 180 degrees to "watch" the action. A festival plaza lined with palm trees on the south end of the plaza, just outside the main entrance at Church Street and Terry Avenue is planned (the streets will be closed to vehicles during events). A balcony-style bar just below the video scoreboard with a 360-degree view is planned as well. A seating section on the north end will be dedicated to members of supporters' clubs. As proposed — and if building codes allow — it will have no seats, but rails and extra room for "safe standing". The supporters' section would also have its own "pub-style" area.[4][25]

On November 12, 2014, Heineken announced a partnership with multiple MLS teams, including Orlando City SC, making Heineken the official beer of the team as well as giving Heineken naming rights to the ground level bar on the south side of the stadium. In addition to the announcement, a new rendering of the south side from inside the stadium was released.[26]

On December 17, 2014, it was announced that the club was partnering with Panasonic, making them the Official Technology Partner of the team in exchange for Panasonic providing on-field and fascia LED boards, the main scoreboard on the south end of the field, and dozens of flat panel television screens throughout the stadium in suites, offices and work areas. In addition, Panasonic will provide technology solutions such as security cameras, control room and other key components for the new stadium.[6]

References

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External links

  • City of Orlando Venues: MLS Soccer Stadium
Preceded by
Citrus Bowl
Home of Orlando City Soccer Club
2016–future
Succeeded by
none
Preceded by
WakeMed Soccer Park
Host of the Women's College Cup
2016–2017
Succeeded by
TBA
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