More information about the possible development at Bannister Mall has come out today. Included in the plan, are plans to build the Wizards soccer specific stadium, and 12 tournament quality youth fields.
The project will cost about $943 million, with hopes that $267 million of that will come from TIFs. The Wizards owners are planning to contribute about half of the $140 million that will be needed for the building of the soccer stadium, which will be owned by the city, and leased back to the team. They will also pay for any overages.
As has been mentioned in the article, the Bannister Mall area is certainly a blighted area, all the major anchor tenants of the mall and adjacent shopping area have all moved out. A redevelopment of some kind is needed in the area.
The plan is before city officials now. The question is, how much resistance will it meet from Mayor Funkhouser, who has expressed an interest in lessening the handing out of TIFs. From his quote in the article, though, it looks like he will definitely consider the plan.
If the plan passed, construction would start next spring, and the stadium would be finished by spring of 2010. As I have stated in the past, I think that the Bannister location is great for the Wizards, the good highway access and visibility, gives them the perfect location. It's also going to be good to see an area that I went to when I was younger get redeveloped after the fall out that has occurred in the area.