On Tuesday, June 10th, 2014, Orlando City Soccer Club President Phil Rawlins, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs released the features and renderings for the new state of the art Orlando City Stadium.
The new stadium is expected to have a capacity of 19,500 and will be shaped as a full 360-degree bowl constructed below ground level with three uniquely designed upper level seating areas. It will also feature full roof canopies similar to those seen at PPL Park, home of the Philadelphia Union and Red Bull Arena, home of the New York Red Bulls. These canopies are expected to amplify the crowd noise and shelter fans from the rain and sun.
The stadium is also expected to include 1,500 Club Lounge seats, a maximum of 38 luxury suites, and an elaborate 360-degree balcony style bar within the scoreboard structure. The stadium will be located approximately one block away from the Amway Center, home of the Orlando Magic, which could potentially make for synergistic opportunities for both venues. In the mean time, Orlando City SC is expected to play its inaugural Major League Soccer (MLS) season in 2015 at the Orlando Citrus Bowl.
The new stadium will reportedly cost $115 million and will be split between the public funds and Orlando City Soccer Club. The club will make up for this expensive undertaking by opening up the intricate stadium to other major sporting events, which could include NCAA Soccer and Lacrosse Tournaments, NCAA Football games, NWSL games, international soccer friendlies, seasonal concerts and festivals, and many others. These different events have seen success at Major League Soccer stadiums across the country such as BBVA Compass Stadium (Houston Dynamo), PPL Park (Philadelphia Union), Red Bull Arena (New York Red Bulls), Sporting Park (Sporting Kansas City), and Toyota Park (Chicago Fire). Its also not outlandish to think that the new venue could play host to the MLS All-Star game in the near future. An event like the MLS All-Star Game could be a lucrative undertaking that could make a positive impact by boosting the local economy, and help make Orlando one of the top sports markets in the United States.