Starting on Wednesday, fans who submit season-ticket deposits for St. Louis City SC matches will be investing in more than the MLS expansion club that begins play in 2023.
They will be making a large investment in the city's revitalization efforts, says the club's Chief Revenue Officer Dennis Moore.
"When you look at the physical footprint of where we are in downtown West St. Louis, we will not only have our stadium site there, which will be a soccer-specific stadium with 22,500 seats, we are also putting our training facility on that site as well as our team headquarters," Moore told MLSsoccer.com during a phone interview on Tuesday. "We think that’s a critical part of the spirit of the new St. Louis and the renaissance of our city, how this club can move this city forward and create a lot of positive energy for St. Louis. ... One of the ways to do that is to make sure all of our team employees, our players, everybody is located on that downtown stadium site."
For as little as $50, fans can put down a deposit for up to eight seats at the stadium, which is expected to be open in time for the club's competitive debut. That debut will represent the return of top-flight soccer to a city that was once the de facto home of the US men's national team, and a new team to cheer for that both represents the city's passionate sports culture, but also engages populations that have often fallen outside of it.
"We did not want to make this a financial burden on anybody," Moore said. "We really just wanted to establish a process whereby we could start to identify who’s interested in season tickets. But yes, the St. Louis community and the way they have supported the professional sports teams in town played a critical role in that. Our hope is that our team, our stadium and our building resonates not only with families, but with immigrant populations, with a very diverse season ticket base. Major League Soccer is different than the other sports leagues. By that I mean much younger, much more diverse, much more oriented towards digital and social media. And we’re going to lean into that."
Fans can make a deposit on Supporters and General Reserved seating ($50 per account), Premium Seating ($100 per account) or Suites ($2,500 per account) on the team's website.
Moore didn't put numbers on what kind of response he expects, but there's an obvious level of excitement as the journey to joining the league becomes more real.
"It’s the first time we really get to measure demand and excitement from our fanbase," he said, "so we’ve put a lot of work into this, and really just very excited to have the first opportunity to connect with our potential season-ticket holders in a real way and start to establish a relationship with them and build that fan experience."
"I think the initial impressions are that St. Louis is showing up in the community, and the groundswell of support that we’ve gotten over, really since we’ve launched our team brand on Aug. 13, has been overwhelming."