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Volume 25 No. 47
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Nashville Pursuing Approval Of Six Agreements For MLS Stadium Plan

Nashville Mayor David Briley's administration and owners of the city's MLS expansion franchise have "reached six preliminary agreements for the construction and lease" of a $275M stadium project at the city's fairgrounds, according to Joey Garrison of the Nashville TENNESSEAN. The parties are now "eyeing an ambitious timeline to get everything approved by the Metro Council, Nashville Sports Authority and Metro Board of Fair Commissioners by Sept. 4." Included among what will be voted on in the weeks ahead is the fairgrounds ground lease, which "calls for the Metro fair board to lease fairgrounds property to the sports authority for 30 years for the stadium." It would "mirror the terms of the stadium lease." The fair board would have "no financial responsibility for the stadium's construction." The stipulations in the team operating lease "would survive if the ground lease is ever terminated." The stadium operating lease agreement would have the sports authority "lease the stadium" to the John Ingram-led MLS expansion club ownership for 30 years. Under the financing plan, the owners "would pay rent twice a year that is equal to the debt service required for that year from the team." Debt obligations are around $13M annually. The development agreement also "binds the sports authority and the team to agree on the scope of the project: a 30,000-plus seat stadium that would be LEED-silver certified." Final stadium plans "must be submitted to MLS by Feb. 25, 2019." Additionally, an agreement between the sports authority and the team "would make the team responsible" for Populous "designing and constructing the stadium in accordance" to a $12M contract recently approved (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 7/11).