55° Good Morning
55° Good Morning

MLS moves closer to pact with city on new stadium

Joel Lindpere of the New York Red Bulls

Joel Lindpere of the New York Red Bulls heads the ball during the game against Chivas USA at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls and Chivas USA play to a 1-1 tie. (May 23, 2012) Photo Credit: Getty Images

Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber said yesterday that the league was "at the finish line" in obtaining approval from New York City to acquire land for a $300-million soccer-specific stadium at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens.

The stadium would house an expansion team that would become the league's 20th franchise. Garber said the project was on target to be completed by 2016.

"I do believe we will resolve it shortly," he said of the approval process during a conference call. "I can't put any timetable on that."

He added: "We've got to continue to work with the community to build on the sport, work with the local elected [officials]."

Queens borough president Helen Marshall was unavailable for comment.

Garber said that the league must work out an agreement with the Mets so soccer fans could use the parking lots at nearby Citi Field.

Garber said there were several potential ownership groups. "I can't talk about who they are," he said. "There are a wide variety of people that expressed interest, some of who we are in detailed discussions with."

Garber said the stadium will create 2,200 construction jobs, 800 day-of-game jobs and about 200 full-time jobs.

New York Sports