JACKSONVILLE, Fla — Millions of Americans will be tuning into the Super Bowl Sunday but another kind of football fans here in Jacksonville are looking forward to Tuesday.
That’s when city council will be introducing legislation opening the door for construction of new soccer stadium on Jacksonville’s Eastside.
The Jacksonville Armada soccer team has been through quite a few ups and downs over the years.
Daniel Johnson has been rooting on the team for about eight years.
“It’s been an interesting to go from the North American Soccer League where we were, to all the way down to where we are at the NPSL, which the league we’re in now is under 23 teams. So basically, we have amateur players,” said Johnson.
But Johnson is hopeful a pending deal will bring the Armada back up in the ranks.
The council legislation would sell a 5.83- acer property off A Philip Randolph Boulevard for just one dollar, with the guarantee a new soccer stadium for the Armada will be constructed on it.
“We’ve done all this in the hope of, we’ll be back to where we were,” said Johnson.
The stadium would have to seat a minimum of 2,500 and include a 100-space parking lot.
It would also have to include 25,000 square feet of office space.
As of now, the city wouldn’t be on the hook for construction costs.
Overall, Johnson said the proposed development would not only benefit the team, but also the community as whole.
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“And that’s one thing that I know the Armada has always been about even from the inception of talking about this deal, was how do we get the community involved? So, I think it’s going to be good along those lines,” said Johnson.
Council is slated to vote on the deal February 28th.
If approved, construction would have to begin before January 31st of next year and be substantially complete before July 31st 2025.