The NFL is just a dream, but San Antonio is going all in for Major League Soccer.
Newsradio 1200 WOAI's Michael Board reports that Gordon Hartman, the owner of the San Antonio Scorpions minor league soccer team, is proposing an expansion of Toyota Field, adding 10,000 seats and more then one dozen new luxury boxes.
Hartman says the upgrade will make the field 'one of the nation's premier soccer and special events venues.
"The escalating interest in the Scorpions and professional soccer over the past two years has been mind boggling," Hartman said. "We are blessed to be a franchise playing in the North American Soccer League, however, we must be prepared to expand once support and investment are secured to allow for additional opportunities."
Northeast side Councilman Mike Gallagher, whose district includes Toyota Field, is urging City Council to go on record supporting bringing Major League Soccer to San Antonio.
The cost of the expansion is put at $38 to $45 million.
Architect Adam Gill with Luna Architects says it will rival the stadiums used by England's top Premier League teams.
"It will actually have a very good experience," he said. "It will be very intimate, which is one of those things the European soccer leagues really accomplish well."
Hartman runs Soccer for a Cause, which uses the Scorpions to raise money to fund Morgan's Wonderland, Hartman's unique theme park for the disabled. Hartman says the Scorpions are the only professional sports team in the world which was established to raise money for a non profit organization.
"Just as Soccer for a Cause has been a beacon of light for San Antonio and professional sports," Hartman said. "A high powered beam of light is planned to extend from the southeast corner of the stadium high up into the night sky during Scorpions matches. The shaft of light would be seen for miles away, reminding San Antonio and surrounding areas that the home team is on the pitch. The beam of light would turn red when the Scorpions score a goal or win a match."
The new Toyota Field will include eighteen suites accommodating up to 24 fans apiece, bringing the number of suites to 32. Plans also call for three new clubs, the East Club with 130 balcony seats on the east site level, the West Club with 40 observation terrace seats on the existing west suite level, and a Member's Club at the southeast corner of the stadium. Club patrons and suite holders would be allowed to use a new entrance directly across from existing reserved parking.