Minnesota United FC’s stadium will be ready for 2018, and is set to be one of the best in the league.
20,000 Minnesotans will someday soon get their chance to root on their Major League Soccer team, after Minnesota United FC’s William McGuire, alongside Saint Paul Mary Chris Coleman unveiled the first renderings for the new home for MLS in Minnesota. Based on the renderings, we’re talking about a 20,000-seat stadium that will rival the best in the league.
Here’s what you should know:
- The $150 million stadium will be financed by the team
- It’ll be ready for the start of the 2018 MLS season
- Once it’s complete, it’ll become publicly owned
- The stadium will be sustainable, in order to minimize both the environmental impact and energy usage
The world-class stadium features Minnesota fans can expect
- LED lighting
- 360-degree canopy over the bowl
- Field heating system
Will it be affordable?
After Minnesota United FC posted their stadium rendering on their website, fans started to comment (posting their support – or lack thereof – for the new stadium). One of the common threads among commenters was the fear that once MUFC enter the MLS, fans fill be priced out.
"I don’t care about “best” stadium, most advance, blah blah…I’m more concerned with… Is it affordable? Will the games draw 18,000+ bc it’s affordable? Or will the stadium be half empty because it’s not. That’s the real question. I’m super curious to see ticket prices. – Tou Lee"
Here’s the deal: MLS is definitely very interested in supporting the efforts of cities building soccer-only stadiums. 15 of the 20 MLS teams have built stadiums specifically for themselves, 12 with a ton of support from taxpayers and the government.
These stadiums have the potential of delivering intensely intimate soccer experiences for fans (I’m just thinking about the steeply pitched seats at San Jose).
That’s a very good thing.
Being able to create sellouts easier than, say, a team that plays in a football stadium, helps to create a following and interest (also a good thing).
But when you only have 20,000 seats to work with, there are a couple of downsides, too:
- Ticket prices will likely increase
- Many fans will get left out of the stadium (due to low supply)
I for one am all for a soccer stadium (although I love going to Sounders games with 40,000+) and think these stadiums will help the league to grow (people will want to go to the game for the experience, whether they’re into soccer or not).
But I’m not ignorant of the fact that as the league grows, these smaller stadiums will create an enormous demand, wherein the teams will hike up prices because, well, they can – leaving the fans helpless.