Skip to content

About that “done deal” on D.C. United’s new stadium …

Aug 26, 2013, 5:22 PM EDT

RFK Stadium 2

Major League Soccer’s stadium development history, accomplished as it is, has also been wrought with premature excitement and even a few splashy stadium announcements that, well, let’s say they “didn’t take.”

New York had a couple of false starts before finally getting shovels in the ground on the facility that eventually became Red Bull Arena. Happy ending there, at least.

Houston once had a deal … then didn’t have one … before it finally had one again. Confusing, I know.

D.C. United, by my count, has had three optimistic runs, trumpeting to varying degrees a new and sorely needed stadium being in the works. Most recently, the club called “done deal” on a $300 million agreement for the District of Columbia to provide land and infrastructure for a 20,000-seat facility, one that sits nearby Nationals Park. It would replace well-aged RFK Stadium (pictured), of course.

But we would all do well, once again, to recall the Golden Rule of MLS facility development: Don’t bother getting yourself in a froth about anything until you actually see construction at work, until ground is cleared and steel is aimed skyward and men in hard hats can be eyeballed holding blueprints and pointing here and there in purposeful ways.

We read in The Washington Post yesterday the latest evidence of my Golden Rule; the club’s done deal may not be quite so done after all.

The real problem for MLS and for D.C. United is that the dominant opposition voice on this project has already lost a similar battle. Yes, that’s a problem.

See, Ed Lazere, executive director of the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute, also guided the efforts to scuttle Nationals Park, the city’s Major League Baseball facility that opened in 2008. Just as armies learn lessons from lost battles, presumably Lazere learned how to fight his fiscal skirmishes in smarter ways.

We’ll see. Meanwhile, continue to enjoy RFK Stadium. And you might want to borrow one of those hard hats; things tend to fall from the building sometimes, you know.

Latest Posts
  1. Three things we learned from Chelsea’s win vs. Manchester United

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:36 PM EDT

    Shaw's superb display caught the eye. Getty Images

    Here’s what we learned from Chelsea’s narrow win over United.

  2. Arsenal 2-1 Reading: Alexis helps Gunners clinch FA Cup final berth

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:13 PM EDT

    Arsenal v Reading - FA Cup Semi-Final Getty Images

    Arsenal had 71 percent possession as late as the 80th minute, but the score remained deadlocked at one.

  3. VIDEO: Pearson thrilled with Leicester win, but can’t let foot off gas

    Apr 18, 2015, 1:25 PM EDT

    Leicester City v Swansea City - Premier League Getty Images

    Hear what the Foxes’ boss had to say about Leicester’s big win.

  4. Crystal Palace 0-2 West Bromwich Albion: Morrison, Gardner lead Baggies

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:59 AM EDT

    Crystal Palace v West Bromwich Albion - Premier League Getty Images

    Palace’s table charge is momentarily halted, as Alan Pardew’s boys sit 11th with 42 points.

  5. Everton 1-0 Burnley: Mirallas’ early strike sees off 10-man Clarets

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:57 AM EDT

    Toffees five unbeaten, send Clarets bottom of the table.

  6. Leicester City 2-0 Swansea City: Pearson’s Foxes dominant in massive win

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:53 AM EDT

    Britain Soccer Premier League AP

    Leicester is even with 17th place Hull on points and a single point behind Sunderland, with a match in hand on both.

  7. WATCH: Craig Gardner strikes a beautiful curler to double West Brom’s lead

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:40 AM EDT

    Crystal Palace v West Bromwich Albion - Premier League Getty Images

    James Morrison had scored in the second minute for the Baggies’ first tally.

  8. Watch Live: Chelsea vs. Manchester United (Lineups and Live Stream)

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:34 AM EDT

    Rooney, pictured above running away from Chelsea's Eden Hazard, has played in two of United's three Premier League games this season, picking up two assists in the team's opening day weekend win at Swansea City. Starting his 10th season at the club, Rooney has 141 league goals in 280 Manchester United appearances. Getty Images

    It’s a big one, folks, with the two of the Premier League’s best tangling at Stamford Bridge.

  9. Online fan outrage gets 10-year-old removed from Arsenal vs. Reading pregame

    Apr 18, 2015, 11:17 AM EDT

    Arsenal v Reading - FA Cup Semi-Final Getty Images

    The FA has switched things around and will still give the kid a chance to walk onto the Wembley pitch before an upcoming England match.

  10. LIVE – Premier League, at the half: All four games 1-0; Foxes lead, Burnley sees red

    Apr 18, 2015, 10:49 AM EDT

    Crystal Palace v West Bromwich Albion - Premier League Getty Images

    Set piece goals are the name of a pair of early games, as four Premier League matches dot the weekend landscape. Live stream link inside.

  11. Watch Live: Leicester City vs. Swansea City (Lineups, Live Stream)

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:31 AM EDT

    Swansea City v Leicester City - Premier League Getty Images

    Bafetimbi Gomis is out for Swansea City, putting more focus on Ki Sung-yeung and Gylfi Sigurdsson.

  12. Watch Live: Crystal Palace vs. West Bromwich Albion (Lineups and Live Stream)

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:24 AM EDT

    With the Eagles embroiled in the relegation battle, Ledley believes his side can stay up and kick on in the PL next season. Getty Images

    Crystal Palace has been humming, with Yannick Bolasie coming off a hat trick for the Eagles.

  13. Watch Live: Stoke City vs. Southampton (Lineups and Live Stream)

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:20 AM EDT

    Stoke City v West Ham United - Premier League Getty Images

    Can high-flying Saints keep the top four hopes alive with a win at the Brit? Watch live online.

  14. Watch Live: Everton vs. Burnley (Lineups and Live Stream)

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:17 AM EDT

    FBL-ENG-PR-EVERTON-QPR FBL-ENG-PR-EVERTON-QPR

    Can the Toffees go five games unbeaten? Watch them take on the Clarets live online, here.

  15. Chelsea mind games – Jose Mourinho: “It’s easier to manage Manchester United”

    Apr 18, 2015, 8:20 AM EDT

    Chelsea Press Conference Getty Images

    “The Special One” is fueling the fire ahead of Saturday’s massive clash vs. United.

  16. WATCH: Premier League live online via NBC Sports Live Extra – Week 33

    Apr 18, 2015, 7:30 AM EDT

    Live Extra

    Where and how to watch every single PL game live online or via the app during Week 33.

Featured video

PST Extra: Previewing Chelsea-Man United