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Incumbent supporter of D.C. stadium loses mayoral primary
by Paul Kennedy, April 2nd, 2014 4:53PM
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TAGS:  d.c. united, mls, soccer business

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[MLS SPOTLIGHT] Washington D.C. mayor Vincent Gray, who has championed D.C. United's proposed soccer stadium project on Buzzard Point, was defeated in Tuesday's Democratic primary by city council member Muriel Bowser, who publicly questioned some of the terms of the complicated deal. But the stunning defeat for Gray doesn't change much about the dynamics of the stadium process.

Gray still is mayor for nine more months -- a long lame-duck session -- and any proposal for the stadium, which includes a land swap involving the Frank D. Reeves Municipal Center, will need Bowser's support as she currently chairs the council’s economic development committee through which any legislation must go.

United has said it will pay for the stadium but needs for the city to acquire the land on which it will build the stadium. According to the proposed deal, the city will swap the Reeves Center for the land currently owned by a local development firm.

In February, Bowser expressed opposition to some of the terms of the deal, saying the city needs to get fair value for the Reeves Center and her priority would be funding middle school education.

On Wednesday, Bowser said in a press event at the National Press Club that as chair of the economic development committee she would not hold up Gray projects.

"It’s not my position in government to hold anything up,” Bowser said.

Bowser is expected to defeat Councilman David Catania, an independent, in the general election for mayor.


1 comment
  1. Miguel Dedo
    commented on: April 3, 2014 at 1:10 p.m.
    Other than Mayor Gray saying he "supports" a new stadium, is anything going on? There was a press release about a "plan" last fall as season tickets went on sale, no news of any action at all since. Some good investigative journalism is needed, the Washington Post sports department does nothing. Steven Goff, the Post's "soccer writer" seems to have been chosen because he will sit meekly aside, not challenge the Post's established writers who have interest only in traditional US sports, mention soccer only in a negative aside.

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