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New York City FC close to soccer-specific stadium deal

“Without the Yankees, the reality is that this deal does not happen.”

NYCFC supporters may find themselves just a short distance from Yankee Stadium in new soccer-specific facility. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

One of the earliest proposals for New York City FC’s soccer-specific stadium focused on a South Bronx location blocks from the team’s  current home, Yankee Stadium.

Now, nearly seven years after those initial plans were quashed, the New York Times reported NYCFC is closing in on a deal to secure the property between 153rd Street and River Avenue – a site occupied by Yankee Stadium parking lots and the GAL Manufacturing Corporation.

“NYCFC is actively involved with MADDD Equities, the New York Yankees, NYC Economic Development Corporation, the Bronx Parking Authority, Bronx community groups, and local leaders to bring an exciting and positive project proposal to the South Bronx and its community,” a club spokesperson told Pro Soccer USA when asked about the report. “One element of which would be New York City’s first soccer-specific stadium and home for NYCFC.”

That home would be a privately financed 25,000-seat stadium as part of a development project with a price tag in excess of $1 billion, according to the report.

The project reportedly has the support of Mayor Bill de Blasio and James Patchett, the president of the city’s Economic Development Corporation. Patchett’s office released a statement saying there is no formal agreement.

The New York Yankees, who own a 20% share of NYCFC, demanded more than 9,000 parking spaces as part of the stadium renovation in 2009. The Yankees agreed to reduce the number of spaces to make help make room for the soccer-specific stadium and development.

“That’s what made this deal happen,” Maddd Equities CEO Jorge Madruga told the New York Times. “Without the Yankees, the reality is that this deal does not happen.”

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