Weather Forecast


Professional soccer club teams up with Woodbury to build facility at BSC

The Bielenberg Sports Center expansion project just got even bigger.

Minnesota United FC, the state's professional soccer club, plans to fund a $1.5 million, 7,000 square foot addition to the Woodbury facility currently undergoing a $21.8 million expansion.

President of the club Nick Rogers has been in talks with city staff to negotiate an agreement to use the new, football size field house and build their own training facility with locker rooms and showers to the west of the building.

Minnesota United players currently practice out of Blaine's National Sports Center, but Rogers said Woodbury's new and improved field house will allow the team to play in a larger space year-round and during morning hours.

"We're filling a vacancy," he said, noting that the 9 a.m. to noon time frame isn't typically utilized by local youth athletic clubs.

If the council grants final approval, Minnesota United will fund the additional dollars and build the attached facility in conjunction with the current project. The entire facility is slated for a spring 2014 opening.

The preliminary agreement also includes access to one outdoor field at the complex.

Woodbury City Council members heard the proposal at a workshop Wednesday, where they expressed excitement over the plans.

Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens said the additional revenue from the club is a plus that will benefit the city in the long run.

The council also discussed the potential for advertising revenue, however, officials said details and policy decisions regarding that will have to get hashed out at a later date.

City Administrator Clint Gridley said Minnesota United would act as the city’s agent for sponsorship opportunities, but the marketing plans are still conceptual at this point.

Parks and Recreation Director Bob Klatt said the partnership is an exciting venture for the city and the newly expanded Bielenberg Sports Center complex.

Although local athletic clubs will have priority over prime time hours, he said future plans for more broader community partnerships are also possible in the hockey arenas as well.

Riham Feshir
Riham Feshir is a reporter and photographer for the Woodbury Bulletin. Her coverage includes Woodbury City Hall, Washington County Board of Commissioners and business news.  Follow Riham on Twitter @RihamFeshir for the latest updates.