FRISCO - A stadium that helped to pave the way in Major League Soccer is going to be the new home of the sport's history in this country.
In a press conference at Toyota Stadium featuring local and national dignitaries, $39 million plans were unveiled to make Toyota Stadium the host of the National Soccer Hall of Fame with a nearly 100,000 square foot structure and complete re-design of the south end of Toyota Stadium.
"We grew up going to hall of fame museums and with dad [Lamar Hunt] as a member of the National Soccer Hall of Fame class of 1982, it was not only important for us to return the National Soccer Hall of Fame to prominence but to also share the story of soccer in America with the general public," said FC Dallas President Dan Hunt. "For those who have been inducted in the past and those who will be inducted in the future, they deserve the hall of hame to be a first class facility with a permanent home."
- READ: FC Dallas teams up with US Soccer, City of Frisco & Frisco ISD for $39 million stadium renovations
Among the slated changes include new stadium clubs, a party deck, the largest team store in MLS, audio/visual improvements and much more. Toyota Stadium will close the south end in 2016 and 2017 before a grand re-opening currently slated for December 2017.
"It’s an exciting time for our sport," said US Soccer CEO Dan Flynn. "And I think this project is just another example of more excitement for our sport."
Until today, the US Soccer Hall of Fame was without a home after closing the location in Oneonta, New York at the beginning of the decade. The process to get the hall to Toyota Stadium was a strenuous one, but the home of perhaps the youngest and most exciting team in MLS will now be the home of soccer history in the United States.
"It’s been a journey, but a good journey and when Dan Hunt approached me about a year ago I knew he had something good and it’s been exciting to watch FC Dallas and Toyota Stadium go to a whole new level over the last couple years," said Frisco Mayor Maher Maso. "You can see the dynamic shifting to holding larger events and bringing national recognition to the team, the stadium and the city of Frisco."
Dan Hunt summed it up best.
"Our beautiful game deserves this."