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Bexar County Approves Preliminary Agreement For Soccer Stadium

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Bexar County Commissioners Court has unanimously approved the main business points of a deal to purchase Toyota Field with the City of San Antonio. Under the preliminary points of the agreement, Sports Outdoor and Recreation (SOAR), the nonprofit that owns Toyota Field, will sell the soccer stadium to the City and County for $18 million, while Spurs Sports & Entertainment (SS&E) will add $3 million and agree to lease the stadium for 20 years. The lease fee will be determined during negotiation of a final agreement.

When Toyota Field was designed they brought in some infrastructure for the purposes of expansion.

“When all the grand stands were designed, they were designed and all the work was done in anticipation of adding more seats,” said Gordon Hartman with SOAR.

“It’s a rare opportunity that we get to invest public funds and get a two-for-one,” said County Judge Nelson Wolff. “The soccer field will be owned by the public and put us on a path to Major League Soccer, and the money from the sale will go to Morgan’s Wonderland.”

The City of San Antonio will consider its part of the agreement on Thursday.

SS&E will manage and operate the stadium, and add $1 million for facility improvements that will be matched by the City and County at $500,000 each. Annual lease payments made by SS&E would be put in a fund for additional facility improvements and renovations.

SS&E will make its best efforts to pursue a Major League Soccer franchise in the coming years and will provide a business plan and calendar of milestones. If a franchise is awarded, the City and County would then conduct an election for the expansion expenses.

If a MLS franchise is not awarded in 6, 7 or 8 years, SS&E will pay back:

· $250,000 in years 6, 7 and 8

· $500,000 in year 9

· $750,000 in year 10

· $1 million in years 11, 12 and 13