Pima County, FC Tucson Announce Stadium Deal

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Tucson's identity as a pro soccer destination — hey, what do you know, that happens to be the subject of this week's cover story! — took a big step forward today when Pima County announced it was committing $2 million toward a full-fledged soccer stadium at the Kino Sports Complex.

A press conference at Kino today listed some specifics for the planned facility, which will turn one of the already converted baseball fields into a soccer stadium with 2,000 permanent seats. It will also have an overhang above the bleachers to, as main stadium tenant FC Tucson says, "shade crowds from the sun and project the sound toward the field, elevating the energy level."

(I'm just imagining the amplified sounds of vuvuzelas ...)

FC Tucson and county officials also announced plans to add a sixth field to the north side of the Kino Complex, which was built in the late 1990s for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Chicago White Sox, back when Tucson was considered a baseball town first and foremost.

But with nearly a month's worth of professional soccer matches about to be played in Tucson, starting with Saturday's friendly between Canada and Denmark at Kino Stadium, methinks this community might now be known more as a soccer town than for the national pastime.

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