Shock and awe: It appears that New Albany’s luxury soccer stadium offer has arrived at the Dead Letter Office.

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You’ll recall the first yuuuuge local headline of 2017, courtesy of Boris Ladwig at Insider Louisville.

ON THE AVENUES: Gahan’s stadium arcadium kicks off a new year with hilarity, pathos and own goals.

… Such was their enthusiasm for this idea, at a price tag of as much as $30 million, that New Albany’s Mayor Gahan, his adjutant David Duggins and their council fixer, Pat “His Master’s Voice” McLaughlin, apparently spoke openly with Ladwig. In the aftermath, they were left looking like naïve rubes propped atop an incoming hay wagon when Neace and Louisville City FC’s varied clarifications began flowing the morning following Ladwig’s story.

Three weeks have passed, and evidently the bloodhounds have tracked Louisville City FC’s stadium chase back to a location in downtown Louisville, leaving New Albanians to ruefully shake their heads and ponder whether Team Gahan went for the glamorous bait with or without a proper sense of ironic detachment — in short, did New Albany play its nodding, nudging, winking role so as to concentrate the thinking of Mayor Fischer’s economic incentives hit squad, or did we really believe we were in The Game?

Only the mildewed Down Low Bunker walls know for sure, and as usual, the principal players aren’t talking. Earlier this week, Louisville City FC disgorged a press release, which was incorporated into an article at WLKY, which was reprinted by IL with permission, prior to these stories being artfully cut and pasted together to form an unattributed story at the News and Tribune.

Let’s reference the club’s own words, shall we?

Louisville City FC has entered into partnership with global architecture firm HOK for design of a soccer-specific stadium and adjacent development projects, a key step in the club’s pursuit of a long-term home.

HOK will provide the vision for a 10,000-seat stadium that could later expand in capacity to 20,000. The overall site plan will also include space for office and retail development.

“We’re getting closer to securing a lot in urban Louisville, and now we’re thinking about what we can build on it,” said LouCity Chairman John Neace. “HOK’s work ensures that once a location is determined, community members will have a tangible picture of Louisville City FC’s future.”

Ladwig provides further background here: Soccer official: Division II status brings broadcasting, sponsorship opportunities for Louisville City FC.

… For LouCity, this year, its third in the league, is shaping up to be a pivotal year. Club leaders have identified the need for a soccer-specific stadium as their primary goal this year. The club hopes to build a $25 million venue in Louisville, but hasn’t ruled out moving to Southern Indiana, depending on how the finances work out. Chairman John Neace has said that the local owners plan to raise millions of private dollars toward construction, but likely will need some public support to make the stadium a reality.

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