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Report: LAFC looking to build stadium at Sports Arena site, have selected architect

Could there be movement on this very important front before long?

Penn: Not ready to specifically talk about a stadium deal, but maybe getting closer?
Penn: Not ready to specifically talk about a stadium deal, but maybe getting closer?
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

With speculation mounting about the stadium process for Los Angeles Football Club recently, comes a report from Kevin Baxter at the Los Angeles Times concerning just that subject.

According to Baxter's article from Wednesday, the club's main focus is on building a stadium at the Sports Arena site in Exposition Park, a location long rumored (and perhaps supported by circumstantial evidence, like leaked architect renderings showing the stadium at that location) to be the preferred home for Los Angeles' second MLS team. Baxter got a quote from an anonymous source saying: "I would be surprised if they announced a site other than the Sports Arena," although club president Tom Penn would not confirm or deny that sentiment on the record.

As Baxter notes, the Sports Arena needs to be torn down to make room for a soccer stadium, but parts of the multifaceted process to renovate the area have been in the works for years now. That doesn't mean it is a done deal, as Penn made pains to state, but it does perhaps improve the chances this site will become LAFC's home.

Another piece of information, as yet unreported publicly, is that the winning architecture firm to design LAFC's stadium is Gensler, a large multinational firm that among their local projects, designed the Ritz-Carlton Hotel & Residences and JW Marriott at LA Live, a building that's pretty clear to see for anybody who's driving near downtown Los Angeles. Baxter reports that, just as Meis Architects' recent renderings of an LAFC stadium indicated, the five firms in the running were asked to design a stadium based on the Sports Arena site.

Nothing in the report indicates a timetable for finalizing a deal or announcing anything publicly, but it sure seems like some tangible news could be on the horizon in the coming weeks. If that's the case, it would tick a huge box off on the to-do list for LAFC, and allow them to begin building the stadium with the hope of having it ready for 2017.

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