[MLS EXPANSION]New York City FC has yet to find a home for its soccer-specific stadium. To make matters worse, its plans for a training facility at Manhattanville College in Westchester County have fallen through following a suit filed by a citizen's group and three residents. The Manhattanville president, for one, was not happy with the suit.
As part of a five-year lease agreement, NYCFC was planning on putting $10 million into the college facilities, including renovations to the gymnasium, an upgrade to existing fields and addition of a new field on what is now a tennis court.
Plans received approval from the town of Harrison, but three residents joined the Purchase Environmental Protective Association in filing suit against the plans. Delays in work on campus until the suit is resolved led to NYCFC's decision to pull out of the deal. NYCFC will need a practice home by early 2015. It will play its first MLS season at Yankee Stadium.
“It’s unfortunate that a small group of very well-resourced citizens chose to pursue this action against the college,” Manhattanville College president Jon C. Strauss said in a statement.
He added that the lawsuit nixed much-needed capital improvements, internship opportunities, and invaluable publicity for the school.
Manhattanville's athletic department issued its own statement: "In these trying times of increasing competition for a declining pool of potential students, the planned facility improvements, the temporary presence of a first quality professional soccer team on campus, the attendant publicity, and increased academic and internship opportunities for students would have been a great boon to the college, its students, and the community."