- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On July 10, 2009
- 2 Comments
- MLS Portland
I feel like we’ve been around this over and over again but it looks like soccer will most certainly be coming to the Rose City in 2011. The Oregonian reported yesterday that Portland mayor Sam Adams and Commissioner Randy Leonard reached a tentative $31 million deal with Portland Timbers owner Merritt Paulson to renovate PGE Park.
Much of the financing responsibility for this stadium construction plan, the third to come to the council since March, falls on Paulson. He will contribute $8 million in cash and prepay $11.1 million in rent and ticket taxes to the city for years eight through 25.
“Basically, sports spectators are paying for this project,” Adams said. “Getting the cash upfront is reducing the risk. It’s better than a personal guarantee. If the team fails later, you’ve already got the cash upfront.”
The long-awaited deal scales back by more than $6 million the proposed upgrades from what was previously envisioned to fit within available funding sources. Paulson said some planned seating arrangements and press box changes would probably be cut back or eliminated, but he said it would take weeks to determine the impact of the shifting budget on the construction plan.
“I need a facility that works, but I need to recognize the times that we’re in,” Paulson said. “Ultimately I think it will be a good fan experience.”
You can read more about the whole deal at the link above.
After months of going back and forth and back again it seems the city finally found a way to make all the parties involved happy.
Think we can finally put to bed all of the issues surrounding Portland? Do you think the game with Seattle a couple weeks ago helped push this along a bit with people in the city knowing how important this team is to the community?