Ladies and gentlemen… DC United needs your help, and they need it now. At least over the next few days anyway, as the bill will go before the House of Delegates Committee on Budget and Appropriations next Tuesday.
The quest for a stadium is in jeopardy. Per an open letter from DC United President Kevin Payne to all DC United fans:
We need your help! Several groups who oppose our stadium are bombarding Maryland state and county legislators with e-mails and letters asking them to block our proposed new stadium.
Perhaps the up-beat news conference several weeks ago caused our supporters to think this was a done deal — but nothing could be further from the truth.
The bottom line is that there are groups who do NOT want a stadium. Most of the reasons I’ve heard are financial, which at this time are not unjustifiable. But I feel like this is a potential boost to the PG County business community that will last far beyond this current economic crisis. And we, as supporters of DC United, have to act FAST in order to counter those groups.
So here is the IMPORTANT LINK: — secure.dcunited.com/stadium —
At that link is a form you can fill out and it will automatically send it to all the delegates listed on that page.
For more info, there are several places to look (the Washington Post is NOT one of them. Fischer and Nakamura in particular have some wierd agenda going on there).This thread on the BigSoccer Forums is purely about the form listed above. This thread at BigSoccer is about general stadium talk. It is the 14th such thread, each with over 40 pages of posts. If it has been brought up at all, it’s in there.
Here is a summary of bullet points compiled by user Seahawkdad over at BigSoccer:
- The Maryland Stadium Authority has never had to go to the taxpayer well to make up for revenue shortfalls
- The stadium authority is successful and experienced in creating and scheduling events for properties under its umbrella, and will be scheduling non-soccer events to make use of the new stadium and its anticipated attached event/conference center.
- PG County will have the economic benefit of being the corporate headquarters of DC United and visiting teams will be staying at National Harbor.
- DC United’s involvement in youth soccer will bring an additional sport and positive activity to the youth of the county.
- Maryland has a AAA bond rating, so bonds offered in this economic climate will be attractive to investors who are terrified of stocks and who can get only minuscule returns on savings
- The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development now has a Sports and Entertainment Commission that has already snared the 2010 and 2011 NCAA College Lacrosse championships for Maryland and is looking to pull events from other mid-Atlantic states with Maryland’s growing inventory of sports venues
- This is the time to buy land and build. It’s cheaper to do all of that in the current economy.
- We need jobs and economic development.
- The stadium fits into Maryland’s and Metro’s Transit Oriented Development effort.
- Prince George’s political and business leaders wisely recognize that economic downturns present great opportunities to build for the future and see the stadium as such an opportunity.
- Maryland gains a world-class team and organization, thus continuing to build its image.
- Maryland gains an organization that has proven its commitment to being part of the community.
- DC United ownership has a strong track record of economic development, and bringing Victor MacFarlane and William Chang into the business community has the potential of investment dollars beyond those associated with the stadium.
- PG County can use DC United’s presence as further evidence that the county is continuing to grow and prosper.
- The stadium will pull in revenue from outside the county
- Sports fans of urban stadiums are famous for visiting local bars and restaurants before and after games, as are attendees of other arranged stadium events. Think Verizon Center here, not Fedex.
- This outside revenue will also come from international soccer matches, thus bringing in travelers who will be staying and spending in the county. The number of DCU events will certainly be more than the MLS regular season games: US Open Cup, Playoffs, international competitions, friendlies, etc – And add other soccer games: probable Wash Freedom games, international friendlies (last year at RFK there were 3), US National team (Men’s and Women’s) friendlies and qualifying games, etc – Even without the Wash Freedom, thats about 25-30 events involving PROFESSIONAL soccer.
- This is targeted, soccer specific revenue, not merely a shift of entertainment dollars from going to see a movie to seen a soccer game. Thus it’s even new revenue from the PG County residents who are soccer fans. Currently they’re spending it in DC at RFK. So it brings PG County money home.
- This is not a parking-lot-isolated stadium similar to Fedex. It is planned as be part of a mixed use neighborhood with all of the attraction that has made the businesses around the Verizon Center thrive.
Help DC United’s stadium effort.