The City of Orlando should receive between $18 million and $19 million for the public land being sold to Orlando City Soccer Club (OCSC) for its downtown stadium now under construction, according to an updated sale contract made public on Wednesday morning.
As GrowthSpotter first reported on Jan. 13, the land will be sold at $35 per square foot, a figure based on the price it was acquired for and other appraisals in the Parramore neighborhood. Land sale and development agreements will go before Orlando's City Council on Jan. 25 for approval.
But the proposed agreement now includes the land the stadium's footprint will cover (8.5 acres across 11 public parcels, and one 2.08-acre private parcel bought by the club in July), as well as additional city parcels directly east.
The city's total land offer was estimated at 11.8 acres (514,008 square feet), producing an $18 million sale estimate, but that acreage must still be confirmed with a boundary survey before closing of the sale. The total size of the property could now exceed 12 acres, pushing the sale price closer to $19 million, a city spokeswoman said Wednesday.
The new soccer stadium's total footprint could cover roughly 14 acres between W. Central Boulevard to the north, W. Church Street to the south, Glenn Lane to the west, and S. Terry Avenue to the east. The stadium will be built around the Faith Deliverance Temple.
While a closing price is contingent on the final boundary survey, $18 million for 11.8 acres would be the starting point. Another $3.1 million added for future stormwater work on the property's south pond, and $3 million subtracted as an environmental credit for portions of cleanup work the city hasn't finished on site that the soccer club will now be taking on, resulting in a projection of $18.1 million for that 11.8-acre estimate.
The stadium footprint includes a 1.47-acre parcel owned by Orlando's Community Redevelopment Agency. Upon sale of all the property to the club's affiliate Orlando Soccer Stadium LLC, that CRA will receive $2 million for its parcel.
A down payment of $4.1 million will be paid by the club to the city at time of closing, $3.1 million of which will reimburse the city for site preparation work already conducted. The other $1 million would be applied to the purchase price.
The remainder of the sale price will be repaid by OCSC over 15 years with interest, with two payments of $400,000 per year, starting in 2018. Total interest payments over that period could easily exceed $6 million, unless the soccer club pays off the loan early.
Approximately $1 million a year in property tax revenue will be collected annually, which is revenue the city wouldn't receive if the land was developed for public use.
DEVELOPMENT AND USE TERMS
A rough draft of the development agreement provided to GrowthSpotter on Jan. 13 stipulated that OCSC play all its league home games at the stadium for at least 25 years. That term has been reduced, with the requirement now 80 percent of home games for at least 10 years, or until the property's note is paid off.
If the club ever wanted to sell the property/stadium or relocate the team, it could only do so by selling the property to an entity that owns an MLS or NWSL franchise, which would have to use the stadium for home games under that same 10-year minimum term. The city also holds right of first refusal to purchase the property back at fair market value.
If the club relocated to another city within that term, the property and stadium would have to be transferred to the city's ownership at no cost.
The city government will also be provided a suite in the stadium at no cost, including tickets to all events at the stadium.
HISTORY OF DEAL
The city and soccer club first entered into a memorandum of understanding in October 2013, which provided terms under which a new soccer stadium would be built and operated.
Orlando's City Council first approved a construction agreement for the downtown soccer stadium in March 2014. As much as $30 million in state funding seemed like it could be acquired, but that fell through at the state legislature in Spring 2015.
OCSC and the city have been negotiating fair market value for the stadium site property since at least late May 2015, when the club announced it would build the stadium with private funds.
The club said on Jan. 13 that it will delay opening the new stadium until 2017, instead of late in the 2016 season as previously planned. Construction of the new $155 million stadium is taking longer than anticipated.
A club spokesman said steel is expected to begin being installed at the stadium site late this month or in early February, following months of site preparation.