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October 12, 2021

Economic Impact and Status Update of Bringing MLS to St. Louis

After placing the first steel beam in the ground in December of 2020, St. Louis City SC’s soccer stadium project has made significant progress toward completion, drawing the attention of St. Louisans across the region. Slated for completion in the summer of 2022, the 30-acre project will feature a training center, fan pavilion, three practice fields, and team headquarters all centered around the 22,500-capacity stadium. St. Louis City SC purchased the Union Square Plaza building on 21st Street and have renovations planned to house approximately 150 team employees adding to the budgeted $500 million project.

How the St. Louis City SC Stadium will Invest in St. Louis

The ownership group, MLS4TheLou, is going all in on downtown St. Louis hoping to bring energy and revitalize the Market Street corridor of Busch Stadium, Enterprise Center, and the new St. Louis City SC stadium. The club is one of the few professional sports teams and the only Major League Soccer team to have their team headquarters, stadium, and practice facilities in one centralized downtown location. As the 2023 season approaches, look for increased construction of bars and restaurants in the surrounding area as soccer fans look for entertainment on gamedays.

According to the Missouri Times, an impact study conducted by the St. Louis Board of Alderman projects an estimated annual attendance of 370,000 fans from outside of St. Louis, resulting in the creation of about 175 jobs, $8,400,000 annually in total fan spending, and at least $1,334,000 in taxing bodies.

The $500 million project will be largely financed by the ownership group, which is led by the Taylor family of Enterprise and Jim Kavanaugh of World Wide Technology. The Missouri Development Finance Board approved $5.7 million in state tax credits after denying the original proposed amount of $30 million. Not only will the tax credits be used to fund the stadium, but any leftover money will be used for the rebuild of Market Street.

After seeing the success of other MLS expansion teams in the Midwest, including Nashville and Cincinnati in the past two years, the project is a promising sign for a turnaround for Union Station and the surrounding area of the new stadium. An MLS season guarantees seventeen home games. St. Louis’ passion for all its sports teams and for the sport of soccer itself will pull 22,500 fans into the downtown area for all seventeen gamedays for years to come.

The Anders Sports, Arts and Entertainment Group will continue to monitor the ongoing developments for MLS, and the our Construction Group stays up to date on the latest projects in our own backyard. Stay tuned for more details on upcoming St. Louis construction projects.

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