Another momentous day for Orlando as I joined Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs to announce a funding plan for the construction of a new Downtown Orlando soccer stadium. This proposal paves the way to bring Major League Soccer (MLS) to Orlando as the first MLS team in the southeast.
This afternoon, the Tourist Development Council (TDC) recommended allowing for Tourist Development Tax (TDT) revenues to be used toward the construction of a new soccer stadium. The plan also includes additional funding for the Florida Citrus Bowl, the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Visit Orlando and the Central Florida Sports Commission.
Simply put, this package will enhance tourism marketing efforts and our region’s venues so that our community can host additional events in the future, bringing more visitors to Orlando. The hospitality industry remains the backbone of our economy and international travel is critical to ensuring the economic growth of Central Florida.
The next steps in this process include bringing forward agreements to the Orange County Board of County Commissioners and City Council. Funding for the soccer stadium is also contingent upon the MLS granting a franchise to Orlando. MLS is expected to award a franchise later this year.
These venues are more than buildings and MLS is more than just a sport, these are cultural cornerstones for our community for generations to come and an economic kick to our local businesses.
I would like to thank Mayor Jacobs, County and City Commissioners and the leaders of our tourism industry for supporting our collective vision for a City with world-class amenities that can be enjoyed by our residents and visitors alike.
We will keep you updated as we move this vision for Orlando forward.