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Columbus Looks To Spend $4 Million Toward Re-Development Of Historic Crew Stadium

MAPFRE Stadium, now called Historic Crew Stadium, was the first soccer-specific stadium built in the U.S.
MAPFRE Stadium
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MAPFRE Stadium, now called Historic Crew Stadium, was the first soccer-specific stadium built in the U.S.

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther said on Thursday the city plans to devote $4 million from its capital budget for the design and engineering of a new community sports park that will take over the Historic Crew Stadium space.

Planning for the park isn't finalized and the spending would have to be approved by city council.

Ginther said the city is gathering input from the community about what amenities the park should have. Columbus' Recreation and Parks Department is collecting feedback for the sports park through an online survey that is open through July 2.

"This sports park will be engaging and accessible for as many people as possible, and we're determined to get it right," Ginther said. "And that means listening and following the lead of our neighbors."

Charles Tompkins, chair of the Milo-Grogan area commission, said the news sports park will bring unity to the community.

"With a facility like this, it will bring our youth together, our families together," Tompkins said.

Columbus Recreation and Parks Commission vice president Terrie TerMeer, agreed. She said that repurposing the Historic Crew Stadium is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reshape it for community use.

"It can become a crown jewel for what we know will be a facility that all will be able to participate in," TerMeer said.

There is no specific opening date for the park yet, but Ginther said he hopes it's as soon as possible. On Saturday, the Columbus Crew will play its final game at the Historic Crew Stadium against the Chicago Fire.

Historic Crew Stadium opened in 1999 as the country's first soccer-specific stadium.