Greenville County would own the $38.6 million stadium at BridgeWay Station, and it would be “transformative” for the entire Upstate, according to Mauldin’s mayor.
It would seat more than 8,000 fans, bring sports tournaments from across the region and be home to the Greenville Triumph Soccer Club. That’s the proposal for a new stadium in Greenville County from team owner and chairman Joe Erwin.
The $38.6 million stadium in Mauldin would be owned by Greenville County, blend with the architectural style of nearby BridgeWay Station and bring $270 million in economic development in its first decade of use, Erwin said.
“This will be transformative, not just for Mauldin, but for the Upstate as a whole,” said Mauldin Mayor Terry Merritt.
Highlights of the proposal projected to have $270 million in economic impact in 10 years:
- $38.6 million stadium
- 6 acres near I-385 at BridgeWay Station in Mauldin
- 8,100 seats
- 150+ events every year
- Triumph maintains facility and pays $350,000 annual lease for 30 years
Mauldin City Council unanimously approved a resolution to begin negotiations on “Project Kick,” as the project was dubbed, at its Tuesday night meeting, and Greenville County Council’s Finance Committee heard from Erwin himself at its Thursday meeting. The committee voted to hold the project to give council time to ask more questions before recommending it to full council.
The negotiations are to hammer out the details of what entity is responsible for funding which portions of the stadium project, including supplying utilities, construction, management and upkeep.
While it might not be the funding vehicle that Mauldin and Greenville County choose, using hospitality taxes would be a win-win for everyone involved, according to Erwin, the well-known local entrepreneur. That’s because it would apply hospitality-tax money in the intended manner — bringing in more tourism — while creating a regional recreational draw and giving the Triumph a permanent home, Erwin said.
Erwin was thinking about a permanent stadium even as he was paying to upfit the field at Legacy Early College to host the Triumph’s games. While he enjoyed supporting the school, it wasn’t a sustainable model for the team, for finances or fans, he said.
The $350,000 annual lease that’s part of the proposed agreement is more than most USL League One teams pay, he said, but it’s less than the costs at the K-12 charter school.
Not only would the stadium be home to the men’s and recently created women’s Triumph teams, it could host youth soccer playoffs, concerts, festivals and any sport played on a rectangular field.
“We see, by the end of year two, 150 events a year,” Erwin said. “About a third of those events will be soccer.”
BridgeWay Station developer Phil Hughes has committed to donating six acres of land to the Triumph, and that land would in turn be donated to Greenville County, Erwin said. The Triumph would provide the seating and other specific items for the stadium’s use, totaling $18.25 million of the project’s estimated $38.6 million cost.
A petition to declare support of the proposed stadium has been organized online – those interested in signing it can click the link below.