An alert reader sent me to this story in New Mexico In Depth:
Albuquerque voters will decide in November whether the city should foot the bill for a new soccer stadium. Unlike a proposal to build a downtown multi-use arena that percolated in the mid-2000s, this one could become reality.
That’s because the city has a new professional soccer team that has proven popular. New Mexico United games in 2019, its first year, drew more than 12,000 fans on average to its Albuquerque matches in the city’s baseball stadium.
Now, the team wants the city to build a stadium specifically for soccer, which, according to a feasibility study commissioned by the city, is required under United Soccer League (USL) rules after a team’s third year.
The El Paso Locomotives are in their second year as a USL soccer team, so I guess they’ll need to start building a soccer-specific stadium after next year.
Do you suppose that MountainStar Sports Group is out looking at sites for their new soccer stadium, or do you suppose that they’ve already made a decision? If they’re contractually obligated to build a soccer stadium after three years, time is running out. They don’t want to wait till the last minute, when they’re desperate, and will have to pay top dollar.
Let me refer once again to that 2016 story from CBS4Local.com:
El Paso County judge Veronica Escobar said she supports MountainStar Sports Group’s efforts to bring a United Soccer League stadium to downtown El Paso.
. . .
MountainStar Sports group owns the El Paso Chihuahuas. It’s CEO Josh Hunt told CBS4 he would like the stadium to “cap the freeway,” or sit above Interstate 10.
The deck park advocates are saying El Paso’s deck park will be like Klyde Warren. Klyde Warren Park in Dallas doesn’t have a soccer stadium on it.
What do you suppose a soccer stadium will do for the “connectivity” all those advocates are preaching now?
Do you think that the people advocating for widening the freeway, and building a deck park, are trying to bamboozle us, or are they among the bamboozled?
Can you say “bait and switch”?
Is there a reason no one is talking about the soccer stadium?
The city could provide land for this but not pay for it, as that only exacerbates the El Paso “trickle up” economy. You know, the Union Pacific land along I-10 is perfect and would have been for the AAA stadium, too. Mayor Ray Caballero wanted that land developed and he and Hunt were good buddies. Where did it go wrong? Forget the freeway cap; route that traffic onto a bypass like every other major city in the US.
I reckon you know that Union Pacific won’t deal with the City of El Paso because, in exchange for some space above the tracks that the City needed for the ballpark, the City agreed to close some crossings in the Lower Valley. Once the ballpark got built, the City reneged on that part of the deal.
The City didn’t act in good faith. What a surprise, right?
Yep, nothing but a circle jerk going on here. These so called quality of life projects reduce the actual quality of life of our poor taxpayers who lose more and more of their “disposable” income to these citizen funded projects, negating the ability for many here to enjoy life, period. When Veronica came to my door asking for my vote her eyes got big as saucers as I reprimanded her short-sightedness re: Needle and the damage done. Taxing the poor right out of their domiciles by continually having to prop up their failed and baited projects, bleeding our tax coffers dry, yet still trying to squeeze the remaining life-blood from the collapsed vein of their constituents. What quality is there to a life that is spent trying to scrape together yet more cash just to keep your home? Forget home repairs, or basic upkeep, our discretionary funds are taken straight away, negating any ability for a grandiose life beyond our own front door.
How about putting the soccer stadium at the old Cohen site?
PLEASE keep up the drum beat: NO to expanding I 10 in downtown.
YES to the Northeast bypass (also called Borderland Expressway) that would connect 375 to the 404 in Anthony Gap and on to I 10 in southern New Mexico.