Nashville Metro Council Members Express Concerns About Mayor Megan Barry’s Soccer Stadium Proposal

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Some Metro Council members are expressing reservations about Mayor Megan Barry’s soccer stadium proposal ahead of next week’s vote.

Most of those voicing concerns are primarily raising questions about the 10-acre mixed-use development planned for the Nashville Fairgrounds along with the stadium, according to what they told the Nashville Scene

Barry is trying to attract a Major League Soccer expansion team to Nashville, and her $250 million plan calls for Metro to allow the ownership group to lease 10 acres at the fairgrounds for a mixed-use, mixed income development that would include affordable and workforce housing. There also would be a hotel and retail.

Council member Jeremy Elrod told the Nashville Scene he supports the stadium but not the plans for the 10 acres.

“Handing over the 10 acres for free isn’t needed to get a team here or to build the stadium,” Elrod said. “The team says they need amenities to make the game day experience work, but why should they receive for free the right to build them on Metro property? If the stadium and the area is going to do as well as everyone thinks, developers will be lining up to build around there.”

Council member Tanaka Vercher, who chairs the council’s Budget and Finance Committee, said the 10-acre development plans are “unsettling” and that she will vote no if they remain in the proposal.

John Cooper, an at-large council member, was critical of the 10 acres as well as the risks the stadium itself could pose as far as costs. He wants more guarantees in the proposal.

“To build a special-purpose facility like a stadium, I think, does require the Metro taxpayer to limit their risk, and that means actual guarantees,” Cooper said. “Two of our three stadiums can accommodate soccer. If neither of those stadiums are good enough, if you need a specialty fourth stadium, then you have to bear that risk.”

Bob Mendes, another at-large council member, wants to see stronger guarantees, too. He also was not enthused about the 10-acre development.

Barry spokesman Sean Braisted told The Tennessee Star that “the team would be responsible for making lease payments on the stadium, anticipated to be approximately $13 million per year.”

“State law allows for ticket tax and sales tax revenues generated at the stadium to be redirected to pay for the costs of the stadium,” Braisted said. “If revenues from those two sources are less than $4 million in years 1-5 of operations, or $3 million in years 6-10, Metro agrees to fund the difference. It is within the team’s best interest, however, to maximize the usage of the stadium to generate the revenues needed to fund the lease payments and make a profit.”

Some general obligation bonds would also be used, but Barry has said the project would be 90 percent privately funded.

Conversations are ongoing between council members and Barry’s office regarding amended language.

 

 

 

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5 Thoughts to “Nashville Metro Council Members Express Concerns About Mayor Megan Barry’s Soccer Stadium Proposal”

  1. […] for affordable and workforce housing, a hotel and retail. Some Metro Council members have also expressed concerns about that part of the […]

  2. Brian

    Another stupid idea from the People’s Republic of Nashvekistan.

    You mean to tell me that they were able to tackle the overused, oversized ribbon-cutting scissors out of Moron Barry’s hands long enough to ask her about another favored waste of money? They can’t even keep the Titans stadium half full.

    The Sounds games regularly have low attendance. Soccer is just another boondoggle on her way to running the city’s credit card over a few billion dollars.

    Every night, it is five shootings and multiple murderers and no one ever gets arrested. No one even asks the police chief. Don Aaron doesn’t even bother giving interviews anymore. I see no one asking Moron Barry about that. It’s nothing but sunshine and lollipops from the lickspittles in the local media. From her husband’s house organ at the Nashville Scene to every news station. Especially Channel 5 and Nick Beres’ whose light loafers can never fill Larry Brinton’s shoes.

    Every week it’s illegals busted running meth and coke or killing people in drunk driving accidents and fleeing the scene.

    Nashville is nothing more than an overflowing toilet of escapees from the hellholes they created in New York, California, Chitcago, and Michigan looking to replicate those success stories.

    I don’t recognize the city I grew up less than 20 years ago.

  3. Bob

    How much longer do we have to put up with Imam Berry?

  4. Bruce

    Look at this band of useless idiots. Who the heck would want to live in Nashville?

  5. 83ratop50

    But, but, but how else can I further line the pockets of my big business supporters, replies Mayor Berry.

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