Raleigh Stadium/Arena/Sports Discussions


I’m opposed to using public money for what amounts to an essentially private stadium… however, I also hate the Archdale building with a passion so maybe this is an enemy of my enemy situation. Any proposal that gets rid of that monstrosity and opens up Halifax Mall is maybe OK by me.


Maybe the better question to ask is how many cities in the US that have professional teams and stadiums and they do NOT subsidize these teams in some manner? By saying no tax money whatsoever is in reality saying that you do not want professional teams in Raleigh. But isn’t this why the Room Occupancy Tax was created?

  1. I don’t think that’s in any way a better question to ask, honestly.
  2. But since it was asked, it is true that historically privately financed stadiums have been pretty rare, but the tide may finally be starting to turn. The link below is an excellent analysis on how Seattle broke the addiction to public financing for sports stadiums. In the end, Seattle ended up getting a new arena for its new NHL team (and possibly an NBA team) with essentially zero public money. San Francisco also has a privately financed baseball stadium, and a privately financed basketball stadium is under construction.
  3. Saying no tax money whatsoever is really more like saying that it would be okay if Raleigh doesn’t get any more pro sports teams in Raleigh (to add to the NHL team we already have). Having pro sports teams is nice, and I’m actually a huge sports fan, so I wouldn’t say that I don’t want more pro sports teams in Raleigh. I’m just willing to live without them rather than fork over millions of dollars in public money.
  4. No, the Room Occupancy Tax was not created to fund the construction of pro sports stadiums.

  • 1991 - Legislature authorizes Wake County to levy a room occupancy tax and a prepared foods and beverage tax to fund projects "including a coliseum to be built in conjunction with North Carolina State University in Raleigh

  • 1992 - Legislature funds $2 million for site work. Wolfpack Club fundraising efforts raise $22 million. Wake County and the City of Raleigh commit $22 million from hotel and prepared food and beverage taxes.


WakeMed Soccer Park opened in May 2002 as State Capital Soccer Park. The park is on 150 acres (0.61 km2) that the state of North Carolina has leased to Wake County. Money to build the soccer park came from $14.5 million in county-wide hotel room and prepared food and beverage taxes.


NC State University is not a pro sports team, though. Yes, a pro sports team does also play in that building now, but building a new home for the NC State basketball team was the raison d’etre for the coliseum, and an NHL franchise was an afterthought, hence the language in the legislation. Reasonable people can disagree about whether building a new college basketball stadium was a particularly wise use of money, but constructing new buildings that are intended to improve and serve NC State University is a core function of government in a way that subsidizing privately owned businesses is most definitely not. If anything, this actually undermines the case that this money was meant to subsidize privately owned pro sports teams.

Similarly, while the Soccer Park also does host a pro sports team, it’s also used for a wide variety of non pro sports purposes, including hosting college, scholastic and national team competitions and practices, for both soccer and cross-country, which would be much, much less true of a MLS-sized stadium. (That outlay also represents a tiny portion of the money that the occupancy tax has raised over the years.)


Well the funding is still ongoing no matter what your rationale is and it still supports in some manner a professional hockey team and a professional soccer team. The exact reason for this fund is to support projects that brings in visitors to our great cities in Wake County. Would I support a stadium that directly leads to a tax increase? Probably not. But I think a partnership between a pro franchise and various government agencies would in fact be a very good thing for us.


If it came down to a downtown stadium , lets say The Cargill Site , & the only way that this project would happen is a tax increase , I would vote yes for this to happen .


I’m ok with public money if the developer builds offices for the state. That would be more transactional. Assuming most of the money would come in the form of a land donation.


I just saw this on channel 5 11pm news Friday Night . Raleigh Leaders is considering , talking about using $150 million hotel/food tax money towards a downtown sports stadium/facility . Hoping / Praying for this !


I wonder if this would be for the soccer stadium or something else ?


I’m not sure on this . I think WRAL said a sports complex . WRAL said that city leaders for the future has approved $300 million hotel tax money for adding on to the convention center & that they were discussing a possible project of doing $150 million downtown sports venue .


Any further updates or information on this story? It’s very unusual that I missed this as usually I watch the 6 and 11 o’c news…


Robert , I couldn’t believe it either when I heard this . This info. is not on their web page as far I could see . If I see or hear anything else , I will post it .


I heard it also. Debra Morgan was the reporter that evening. I tried locating on the deal site but could not find the story


A few years ago I talked to Mr. Goodmon’s VP of The Durham Bulls , Mr. George Habel by phone & Mr. Habel then said that Mr. Goodmon wanted very much a Raleigh MLS Team . Mr. Goodmon’s strong influence with city leaders may have this positive factor outcome ? JMO !


I have found out some info. concerning WRAL Friday News for a future stadium project . Google , " Wake County Interlocal Fund " , click on 2028 PDF Site & this will give info. on two future sports projects .



Awesome! Thank you! :blush::pray:

Here is a link that others may find interesting:


Not sure if this is new but saw on Twitter that Austin was selected as the MLS 27th city.