The leadership of several FC Cincinnati Supporters Groups released a letter Tuesday afternoon through Cincinnati.com advocating their personal stance on an FC Cincinnati stadium. In the letter, the leadership of The Pride, Die Innenstadt, The Legion, The Knight’s of the Bailey and The Bailey Bastards co-signed a statement drafted by Chris White, the Vice President of the Pride advocating that the club builds the potential stadium within the city limits of Cincinnati.
At last Monday’s stadium town hall, club leaders released several renderings of the project. Many of the renderings showed the stadium on the southern shore of the Ohio River at the Ovation site in Northern Kentucky. These images drew several boos from the crowd and had social media buzzing about the potential of FC Cincinnati in another city in our Greater Cincinnati region.
In the Cincinnati.com letter, the signers advocate keeping the project in the city vs. having the club move to Newport, KY. “There have been several articles and news stories out there recently about how the stadium could be built, how much it would cost, etc. As Cincinnati usually does, we knew our city faces an uphill battle. Despite all the amazing success it has had so far, there are still challenges to be faced, and one of them is keeping FC Cincinnati in Cincinnati.”
— Enquirer (@Enquirer) June 20, 2017
The group also made mention that if the club is to succeed in working to get the stadium in Cincinnati, we must work with the leadership of our area. “There’s going to be a lot of talk in the coming months about cost and logistics, but we’re here to say that it’s incredibly important for our leaders to find a solution.”
In a comment to Cincinnati Soccer Talk, White elaborated on the groups’ letter “We are for a stadium in Cincinnati as long as Jeff (Berding) and Carl (Lindner III) see it as a viable possibility. We’re going to support FC Cincinnati wherever they go, but as long as a location has not been decided, we’re ALL IN for a stadium built in the City of Cincinnati.”
One has to wonder if their comments may have an impact on the timeline of the MLS Expansion process. Is there any benefit for FCC waiting for spots 27 or 28 to make sure they get the stadium in Cincinnati vs. forcing our hand and taking the easier option in Newport?
As a supporter, I am glad that the leadership put their names to such a public issue. There are supporters that live in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. Even if you disagree, these leaders coming out with a public statement is a great sign of the maturity of our club. We can debate locations, design, size or other factors all day long. We are all supporters of FCC and the one thing we call all agree one is that we want what is in the best interest of the club.
If building in the West End or Oakley neighborhoods in Cincinnati force the club to trim their design, reduce capacity, or make themselves less financially viable in the future the stadium should absolutely be built in Newport. But until a stadium in Ohio becomes impossible, these leaders wish our focus to be on the Queen City first and foremost.
Read the letter in its entirety HERE.