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Cincinnati Mayor Offers Stadium Infrastructure Plan

An artist rendering of a proposed soccer stadium.
An artist rendering of a proposed soccer stadium.

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley is unveiling a financing package to help FC Cincinnati build a soccer-specific stadium in Oakley.

The team says it needs a stadium to successfully land an MLS franchise.

"I promise that if we build the public infrastructure, we won't just help FCC get its MLS bid - which we will help - but we will unlock great opportunities for new jobs in our city, in our region, in Oakley that is good for all of us," Cranley says.

Cranley's plan includes a combination of sources to pay for infrastructure around the site. That money includes tax increment financing (TIF), asking Hamilton County for a portion of the hotel tax levied in the city, and money set aside earlier from selling the Blue Ash Airport

Here's how that breaks down:

  • $9.75 million from the TIF.
  • $7.4 million from the Blue Ash Airport sale.
  • Approximately $1.15 million (up to and capped at $1.5 million) per year for 30 years from the city's portion of the hotel tax totally approximately $20 million factoring in interest rates.

That adds up to roughly $37 million. It's worth noting, there's no guarantee the hotel tax will generate $1.5 million each year. The proposal

Earlier this week, Hamilton County commissioners announced they'd prefer FC Cincinnati play games at Paul Brown Stadium. That's a non-starter for Major League Soccer which wants all its teams to play in their own facilities, though the league has made exceptions for joint football/soccer ownership groups like in Atlanta and Seattle.

The county is offering a plan B: $15 million to build a 1,000 space parking garage in Oakley. That money would come from parking revenues generated by current county-owned parking garages.

FC Cincinnati says it needs $70 - 75 million for infrastructure. The city and county offers total about $52 million.

FC Cincinnati is offering to privately finance a $200 million stadium if someone else will pick up the tab for improving infrastructure such as roads, plumbing, etc. around the proposed site.

Cranley's sent his plan to council members Friday afternoon and says he'd like a vote on Nov. 29.

Read the full plan here:

FC Cincinnati Public Infrastructure Improvements by WVXU News on Scribd

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