Friday, August 18, 2006

Will Real Salt Lake go green and is KC about to get a stadium and new owners

A week after David Beckham helped break ground on their new stadium and just four days after the county approved a measure to help fun portions of the stadium's development, Real Salt Lake will be asked to build this stadium according to high environmental standards so it can get a 'LEED certification.'

To get this certification, Real would have to select the site location in such a way as to reduce the effect on the local environment as well as build the stadium using energy efficient fixtures and water-wise landscaping, along with other such requirements. The down side, this will add to the overall cost of the stadium.

However, even with the additional cost, it would be stupid for Real not to go for this classification. With the cost of energy only going up for the foreseeable future, they will be able to recover this cost over the lifetime of the stadium. In addition, one of the selling points of the World Cup in Germany was that it would be the most environmentally friendly international competition ever. If Real can say the same thing, it will help them attract international events to their field.

Interestingly enough, there are only two sports facilities in the country with such a certification and one of the is just a bit away from Sandy in Kearns, Utah which is home to the Utah Olympic Oval (the other is Detroit Lions Headquarters and Training Facility in Michigan).

Finally, with more then a few citizens in the area upset over the RSL deal, this could help rebuild the team's image with community. This along will not make people love the team, but it would be seen as a good start.

Let's just hope they go for this PR and financial win.

In other stadium news, the Kansas City Wizards might just have a stadium deal come November 8th. The Johnson County Sun is reporting that voters will get a chance to decide if they want a new soccer complex on November 7th. This new complex will include "approximately 24 tournament-quality youth soccer fields, an 18,000 seat outdoor soccer stadium to house the Wizards, and adjacent retail to help make this all financially viable. "

However, voters will only be funding the cost of the youth fields, not the stadium or the retail area.

It is not exactly clear who will pay for the stadium, but it will not be current owner Lamar Hunt as it looks like the team would be "sold to local executives of the local powerhouse Cerner Corp. along with some outside investors."

This is still an early report, so details are limited. If the article is correct, the specifics will be announced in the next few weeks. In addition, it is not directly stated, but it might be the case that Cerner Corp. will only buy the team if the voters approve this measure.

If this deal falls through and the Cerner and company pass on the team, it might just mean that Hunt will close down the Wizards. With all the success MLS is currently enjoying, it would be a major blow if they were to lose a team.

Don't forget the US Soccer Carnival part IV.

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