Possible Boston soccer stadium | Discussion

KentXie

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Site in Hub top choice for a soccer stadium
By Scott Van Voorhis
Thursday, June 15, 2006


Major League Soccer is targeting Boston in its search for a new soccer stadium site, one that could also anchor a much larger development.

The league and the Kraft family are kicking off plans to find a site to build a stadium for the New England Revolution, who have long played in the Pats owners? Gillette Stadium in Foxboro.

While soccer executives say they will consider interest from communities throughout New England, Don Garber, commissioner of Major League Soccer, made clear yesterday that Boston tops the list.

Soccer stadiums, with 20,000 to 30,000 seats, can require investments up to $100 million. League officials, however, are pitching these soccer complexes - which can occupy 8 to 15 acres - as the center for wider redevelopment plans involving everything from shops to homes.

?Our grand vision is to have a soccer stadium somewhere within the city of Boston,? Garber said. ?We are looking to create the Fenway Parks of tomorrow.?

The interest in Boston comes as the league pushes its franchises around the country to build soccer-anchored mega-developments.

While not ruling out suburban sites, Garber said soccer stadiums in Europe, where the sport is so successful, are located in urban centers like London and Madrid.

And Boston has the right mix to replicate that urban soccer excitement, with a ready-made market of soccer fans in its legion of colleges and young professionals.

One possible site for the new soccer complex might be a Big Dig parcel near Chinatown called South Bay, eyed by the Krafts a few years ago.

Garber said it fits the profile the league is looking for, but he stressed that no specific tracts have been considered yet.

Meanwhile, several parcels on South Boston?s waterfront have been considered in the past for proposed baseball and football stadiums.
 

Ron Newman

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If Wonderland race track is about to close, as has been reported, that would be a logical place for this development.
 

philip

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Wonderland was the first place to pop into my mind also. It certainly has the acreage needed and its own T stop. This could also spur more development in that area and along Revere Beach.

I could also see alot of support from locals for it with many Brazilian, Hispanic and European immigrants in the area.
 

Ron Newman

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I doubt it has any vacant land large enough for this.

Suffolk Downs has a lot of vacant land that might be sufficient, however. Especially if you add in some of the adjoining vacant land that appears on the satellite photo to be next to gas or oil tanks.
 

philip

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Also, lets remember Boston is does not have limitless amounts of developable land left. We, unlike other cities, do not need to build stadiums in our downtown area. It already has healthy 24/7 activity. I think South Bay should be used for commercial/residential development eventually.

Not to mention possible traffic problems.

I think the city should look hard at spots like Wonderland and Suffolk Downs and other areas away from the city core that could really benefit from what they are proposing.
 

Ron Newman

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well, if it's Wonderland, it's the city of Revere, not Boston, that will have to look at it.

Wherever it goes, it needs to be a short walk from a T station. (A Silver Line Waterfront station is OK.; a commuter train station might be, too.) To avoid causing traffic problems, it should provide no parking.
 

KentXie

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PerfectHandle said:
How bout the Charlestown Navy Yard?
Too small. If there wasnt that development at the Navy Yard then it would probably be a pretty ideal place. But the navy yard doesnt have a lot of shops and such that can attract people.
 

castevens

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Very interesting. I've gone to see a few Rev's games and I've enjoyed myself. In a smaller stadium, the more-intimate atmosphere (and probably more people because of the location) will provide for a better experience.
 

ALEEJAC

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This would be slick. I'm still not sure how to get to Gillette to see a Rev's game if I don't have my car in Boston.
 

KentXie

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I lil off topic but do you guys think Boston can ever have a WNBA team? I would really like to see one.
 

ralman83

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nop

I believe conneticut has a team.

this is great news... it should not go in the gateway area maybe south boston or s. downs or even wonderland.
 

TheBostonian

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Google maps shows many potential places for this. Just one spot on the South Boston Waterfront out of the way of prime development would do. Or maybe that shopping center around Dorcester that people here have noted to be a disruption in the urban fabric. Next to the Bayside Expo Center. At Northpoint on a parcel that would otherwise not be developed for years. Over the pike (too expensive?). I suppose Assembly Square is out. And others...
 

LeTaureau

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What about Fore River Shipyard in Quincy? Is that near a T stop? There is plenty of developable land there, and currently there are plans to begin cleaning up the site and building housing. I know the water taxi docks in the area.
 

PlanBoston

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The "Brick Bottom" district in Somerville, just north of North Point is an ideal spot for an MLS stadium. The BSA just held a design competition for the site, but I doubt anyone made such a proposal. The site is currently disjointed and mainly industrial, but could be redeveloped and reconnected to the surrounding neighborhoods through a public-private partnership. As a bonus, the Green Line extension already calls for stops at either end of this site.

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=McGrath+Highway,+Somerville,+MA&ie=UTF8&t=h&om=1&ll=42.377251,-71.082573&spn=0.011318,0.032959
 

Waldorf

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PlanBoston said:
The "Brick Bottom" district in Somerville, just north of North Point is an ideal spot for an MLS stadium. The BRA just held a design competition for the site, but I doubt anyone made such a proposal.
How and why would the Boston Redevelopment Authority hold a design competition this site in Somerville? Strange.
 

ablarc

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Ron Newman said:
If Wonderland race track is about to close, as has been reported, that would be a logical place for this development.
If Wonderland race track is about to close, could that tell you a little something about locating a marginal sport there?
 

ablarc

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DarkFenX said:
But the navy yard doesnt have a lot of shops and such that can attract people.
Doesn't, but should. One of Boston's big lost opportunities. A waterfront historic streetcar line should terminate there. Run it along the Greenway once in Boston proper. Who could object?
 

Ron Newman

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If Wonderland race track is about to close, could that tell you a little something about locating a marginal sport there?
Dog racing has lost popularity. I don't think that has anything to do with the track's location. A referendum came close to ending it entirely a few years ago, and I think the sponsoring group, Grey2K, is trying again.
 

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