Los Angeles County and City officials along with owners of the Los Angeles Football Club joined together with a few hundred soccer fans to break ground on a new stadium in Exposition Park. Designed by LA-based architectural firm Gensler, the new soccer-specific facility named Banc of California Stadium will be built on the site of the former Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena accommodating 22,000 fans and LA’s newest soccer franchise.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas joined Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and LAFC owners including Los Angeles legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson, actor and comedian Will Ferrell, inspirational life coach and entrepreneur Tony Robbins, entertainment and sports legend Peter Guber, business leader and LAFC Lead Managing Owner Larry Berg, Co-Managing Owners Bennett Rosenthal and Brandon Beck, and LAFC President Tom Penn, in celebrating the historic groundbreaking.
“The stadium project represents a tremendous investment in South Los Angeles, providing a major league boost to our economy,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas.
The new development will bring more than $350 million in private investment to South Los Angeles including a commitment to 40 percent local hires and 35 percent minority business. The development will include a large public plaza, restaurants, retail store, and a conference and events center, serving as a sports, entertainment, civic, and cultural landmark for Los Angeles.
“We start here,” said Larry Berg, LAFC Lead Managing Owner. “After years of planning and hard work we are set to make history here in the heart of the city.”
“This world-class stadium,” said Peter Guber LAFC Executive Chairman and Owner, “Will be a state of the art venue featuring ‘state of the heart’ experiences for players, fans and artists.”
“Los Angeles is the sports and entertainment capital of the world, and today we open a new chapter in our rich history with the world’s most popular game,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti.
“It has always been important for me to invest in projects that create and support jobs in communities that are often overlooked, especially here in Los Angeles. The shovels in the ground today mean real dollars are now flowing into this community, benefitting thousands of people,” said Earvin “Magic” Johnson.
“So I say to the LAFC, Welcome to Expo Park… Now let’s get to work!” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas.
The new major league soccer team is expected to begin play in 2018 at the new stadium.