City Beat

Bringing soccer to Sacramento

A rendering shows what a soccer-specific stadium in Sacramento’s downtown railyard could look like.
A rendering shows what a soccer-specific stadium in Sacramento’s downtown railyard could look like. Sacramento Republic FC

A company that has been involved in some of the world’s largest stadium endeavors has agreed to act as project manager for a new soccer-specific stadium in downtown Sacramento.

Legends would oversee the development, planning and design of a new stadium in the downtown railyard, but only if Major League Soccer awards an expansion franchise to Sacramento.

The ownership group of third-division squad Republic FC has said it is capable of building a privately financed stadium in the railyard that could be open as early as 2018.

In Legends, the team has a project manager that has been involved in stadium management for the New York Yankees, Dallas Cowboys and Manchester City FC of the English Premier League. Legends also handles the marketing of premium seating at the San Francisco 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium and will run the food and beverage service at the Golden 1 Center, the new arena under construction for the Sacramento Kings.

Both the Kings and 49ers are part of Sacramento’s bid to join MLS.

A strong team just got stronger.

Kevin Nagle, managing partner, Sacramento Republic FC

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson said in an emailed statement that partnering with Legends “shows just how serious we are about putting the ball into the back of the net” in the city’s effort to land an MLS club.

“A strong team just got stronger,” said Kevin Nagle, the managing partner of Sacramento Soccer and Entertainment Holdings, the parent company of Republic FC. “Legends brings tremendous credibility, expertise, passion and commitment to our group. They understand our market and share our vision for building a world-class stadium worthy of both the MLS and our incredible fans.”

Even without an assurance from MLS that Sacramento will join its ranks, the local contingent is pushing forward with its stadium plans. City officials announced last month that they will include the construction of a 25,000-seat soccer stadium in a new environmental impact report of the 240-acre downtown railyard.

Johnson has included recruiting a stadium predevelopment team such as Legends to a list of goals for 2015 that are aimed at proving Sacramento’s worthiness as an MLS destination.

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