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Saturday, March 07, 2009

Post: D.C. United Shops for Land; Md. Legislators Aren't Sold

D.C. United Shops for Land; Md. Legislators Aren't Sold
Post, 7 Mar 2009 (Wiggins & Helderman ).
Even as the D.C. United soccer team moves forward with selection of a site for a new stadium in Prince George's County, some state lawmakers are expressing skepticism over legislation that would allow the Maryland Stadium Authority to sell bonds to construct the $195 million facility.
Del. Dereck E. Davis (D-Prince George's) said the numbers might not be realistic. "We're crying broke and making funds for an entertainment venue," he said. "It's bad timing, no matter how you try to couch it."
"I think it's an interesting opportunity, but there's a lot of groundwork that needs to be done," said Del. Justin D. Ross (D-Prince George's). "I'm not sure we necessarily need legislation this year."

A House of Delegates hearing is scheduled for March 17.

Although questions continue to swirl around the legislation, the team has selected a parcel of land adjacent to the Morgan Boulevard Metro station as its first choice for the site, according to a county official and a state lawmaker familiar with the discussions.
Del. Joanne C. Benson (D-Prince George's), whose district would include the venue, said team officials have told lawmakers that the property, which is in the vicinity of FedEx Field, would require the least amount of infrastructure improvements, which would keep costs down. Benson said she has not taken a position on the project because she is concerned about the expense.
County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) pushed for a stadium at the proposed Greenbelt Town Center, but that idea fell apart in the fall when Greenbelt officials balked.
[More, including other possible locations]

(Posted 7 Mar 2009)

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