Mayor-elect Adams vows new soccer stadium for champion NYCFC

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Mayor-elect Eric Adams is vowing to re-open talks to help bring New York City FC its own stadium — a message being hailed by Major League Soccer’s newest champs.

“With their first-ever MLS Cup victory this year, NYCFC did our city proud, and gave all New Yorkers reason for hope,” Adams told The Post. “My administration will re-engage in discussions to explore the possibility of siting a new soccer stadium to serve as a permanent home for the team.”

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Since their 2015 debut, NYCFC has played a majority of its home games at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. The arrangement has been a nightmare for the club because it must work around the Yankees’ schedule; the makeshift soccer field offers poor sight lines and narrow dimensions.

Despite its championship, the team will continue to be a vagabond franchise next season. It is splitting games at Yankee Stadium, Citi Field in Queens and Red Bull Arena in New Jersey.

New York City FC players celebrate after winning the MLS Cup against the Portland Timbers at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon on Dec. 11, 2021.
New York City FC players celebrate after winning the MLS Cup against the Portland Timbers at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon on Dec. 11, 2021.
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New York City FC won its first MLS Cup on penalty kicks against the Portland Timbers.
New York City FC won its first MLS Cup on penalty kicks against the Portland Timbers.
Getty Images

However, Adams’ message offers hope days after fans chanted “we want a stadium” during a City Hall ceremony Mayor Bill de Blasio held Tuesday honoring the team. It was NYC’s first sports championship of any kind since the Giants won the Super Bowl in 2012.

Sources said the shift in power to Adams in January could open the door to NYCFC reviving plans to build a 25,000-seat stadium in the South Bronx that would be part of a privately financed $1 billion mixed-use development project.

Other options are also being considered, including another Bronx site and reviving a plan to build one at Willets Point in Queens near Citi Field, sources said.

“It was very disappointing that Mayor de Blasio’s team at the last minute walked away from a deal that would have provided $1 billion in private investment in one of the poorest communities in the city,” Yankees President Randy Levine, whose team is part owner in NYCFC, told The Post Saturday.

NYC Mayor-elect Eric Adams
Mayor-elect Eric Adams hopes to revitalize a $1 billion mixed-use development project in the South Bronx that Mayor Bill de Blasio rejected.
Robert Miller
Yankees Stadium in the Bronx
New York City FC has played its home games at Yankees Stadium since 2015.
Corbis via Getty Images
New York City FC hopes to have a soccer-specific stadium to host World Cup matches in 2026.
New York City FC hopes to have a soccer-specific stadium to host World Cup matches in 2026.
Getty Images

“We are … very encouraged by Mayor-elect Adams, who gets the importance of bringing real private investment into these communities, and who seems genuinely committed to creating jobs in this city when they are really needed,” added Levine, a former deputy mayor during the Giuliani administration.

Under the South Bronx plan, a new stadium would replace an elevator parts factory and some parking lots and garages on city-owned land, and it would anchor a project that also includes 2,000-3,000 units of affordable housing, commercial and community retail space, a hotel and a new school — all a short distance from Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees are part-owners in NYCFC and helped put together the $1 billion mixed-use megaproject plan it projects would bring 10,000 new jobs.

However, the plan hit a hitch once the Yankees sought a guarantee the city would continue to provide 5,400 well-maintained parking spaces for its fan base — or well below the 9,000 they’re currently entitled to.

The city’s EDC declined comment, but agency sources insisted it was the Yankees who blew the deal by seeking legal guarantees for the parking spaces, and that this project could be revived.

New York City FC goalkeeper Sean Johnson lifts the MLS CUp during the team’s championship celebration at City Hall on Dec. 14, 2021.
New York City FC goalkeeper Sean Johnson lifts the MLS CUp during the team’s championship celebration at City Hall on Dec. 14, 2021.
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NYC Mayor-elect Eric Adams
Yankees President Randy Levine said he likes Mayor-elect Eric Adams’ plans to pursue privately financed projects.
James Keivom

Meanwhile, NYCFC is seeking to parlay the momentum of winning a championship into getting a new stadium – preferably before 2026 when North American cities will host the 2026 World Cup.

NYCFC spokesman Sam Cooke said the team is eager “to engage with the new administration and its leadership team to discuss the stadium [plan], and the club is encouraged by [Adams’] focus on equity, inclusion, and economic development.”

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