Keep Your Eye on the Ball: The Road to the Real Salt Lake Stadium Deal

Abstract

Major League Soccer announced plans to bring a team to Salt Lake City, Utah, and originally the organization announced plans to build a soccer stadium in downtown. The plan was to have the stadium be a joint venture between RSL and Salt Lake City and would be partially funded with public monies.

A large portion of this funding option included monies from Salt Lake City's Redevelopment Agency (RDA). However, tensions existed between the mayor of Salt Lake and the Utah State Legislature, and as a result, the legislature passed a bill making it illegal to utilize RDA funds to build or support stadium infrastructure. Several other proposals were then made by various stakeholders in the Real Stadium. Major League Soccer, frustrated by the lack of movement, hinted that the team may be sold to an investor in another city if a deal could not be reached.

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