D.C. United plan on opening a new soccer stadium in 2018, but their new home already has a name.
On Wednesday the club announced that the new stadium will be called Audi Field after a stadium naming rights deal struck with Audi of America.
"Audi has transcended the automobile industry and fully embraced the culture of soccer, especially in MLS," said Jason Levien, D.C. United Managing General Partner, in a club statement. "We couldn’t think of a better partner to name our stadium and we look forward to forging extraordinary memories for years to come at Audi Field.”
United plan to break ground on Audi Field in the first quarter of 2017. The state-of-the-art facility will have a capacity of 20,000 fans and will feature 31 luxury suites, a bike valet, and 500,000 total square feet of mixed-use retail and residential space on site.
On Monday, the Washington Post reported that the D.C. Zoning Commission, which has final approval over the project, is meeting Thursday to discuss the project in southwest Washington D.C. If permission is granted by the commission, United can begin to apply for building permits.
"We are excited to work with D.C. United and to continue our commitment to soccer in America as well as here in our own backyard,” said Loren Angelo, Audi of America VP of Marketing in the statement. “This commitment allows Audi to connect with passionate soccer enthusiasts of all ages and the greater community through unique experiences that further elevate their excitement in America's fastest growing sport."
“We enthusiastically welcome Audi of America to their new home in the District of Columbia,” D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said. “With a globally recognized brand putting their stamp on the new D.C. United stadium, we move that much closer to more jobs and economic opportunity along the Anacostia – and further cement our status as the nation’s sports capital.”