Pawtucket is hoping A minor league soccer team can be the catalyst for a stadium village.
What is going on in Pawtucket, Rhode Island with its soccer stadium-village project? Apparently, the plan is in doubt because there is a $30 million hole in the budget and the developers of the project would like Rhode Island taxpayers to assist them in closing that gap. Pawtucket lost its Triple A minor league baseball team in 2018 when the owners of the Pawtucket Red Sox decided that a new stadium with the promise of a village around it was just too good to turn down in Worcester, Massachusetts. That Worchester stadium is said to be the most expensive minor league facility ever built with the price tag at around $157 million with Worcester taxpayers picking up most of the cost of the stadium construction. The team moved into the Worcester facility in 2021.
In Pawtucket, there was no chance of replacing the Triple A baseball team so the city looked for an alternative use for the local stadium. The city got a developer and looked ahead to a new sports venue on the property which would include getting rid of the old minor league park. In December 2019 the city cut a deal. The stadium-village would be called Tidewater Landing and when finished, there would be housing, shops and a professional soccer stadium with a United Soccer League team. The USL is a second tier or minor league soccer group. The Rhode Island Commerce Corporation Board approved a proposal that made Tidewater Landing the largest development project in Pawtucket’s history. But that is all in doubt unless $30 million is found. Pawtucket Mayor Don Grebien wants Rhode Island to provide the $30 million for a soccer stadium on top of the $46.2 million the state has invested in the project. The politicians will continue to discuss what can be done. Right now, there is no USL team in Pawtucket. There is no stadium.
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