On Tuesday, March 3, 2015, Real Salt Lake Owner Dell Loy Hansen was joined by West Valley City Manager Wayne Pyle in signing a Letter of Intent between the two parties, agreeing to move forward on an exclusive 60-day negotiating window regarding an 8,000-seat stadium in the city, home to the USL Real Monarchs.
“West Valley City’s mantra of ‘UNITY. PRIDE. PROGRESS.’ perfectly encapsulates the spirit of this partnership between our soccer group, our stadium development folks and the City’s view of how a stadium creates energy, growth, jobs and momentum for the area,” said Hansen. “This is an extraordinary city with diverse business interests. We’ve always been impressed by their ability to bring private sector investment to their community. Their level of commitment is impressive, and their unique ability to embrace public/private partnerships is attractive.”
Should both sides agree to move forward, construction for this project is expected to begin later this spring, with the Monarchs kicking off league play at the new venue during the club’s 2016 season. In addition to the Monarchs’ games, it’s envisioned the stadium will also host many other events and teams, including a concert series, a professional women’s soccer franchise, a men’s lacrosse and rugby franchises, community adult soccer games, and other activities.
“We are so excited to be part of this announcement and bring yet another major entertainment venue to our fair city, as the commitment and skill of those working tirelessly behind the scenes has resulted in another major milestone in the progress of West Valley City,” said City Manager Wayne Pyle. “The commitment of our elected officials to a vision of quality development for our community is again proven wise. Particularly, we are very happy with the opportunity we have to work with a successful organization such as Real Salt Lake and it’s leader, Dell Loy Hansen.”
Slated to kick off later this month, Hansen formed the USL Monarchs as an elite lower-division professional squad which bridges the gap between Real Salt Lake of Major League Soccer and the club’s highly-lauded academy at the Grande Sports complex in Arizona, which has produced a perennial pipeline of NCAA Division I players, young professionals and has consistently competed for numerous national championships at the U-18 and U-16 levels in recent years.
“We are excited to welcome the Real Monarchs and all fans of professional soccer to our city,” said West Valley City Mayor Ron Bigelow. “This is a great opportunity for our residents to enjoy soccer. West Valley City and the Monarchs are a great match and they will be a terrific addition to our community as we build toward the future.”
For the inaugural 2015 Monarchs season, the club will play a 28-game regular-season slate in the 12-team Western Conference, with additional participation in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The club will share Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy with MLS Real Salt Lake. The Monarchs, led by Head Coach Freddy Juarez, wrapped up public tryouts today, and are expected to unveil its inaugural roster in the coming days in preparation for its first-ever game on Saturday, March 21 at Los Angeles. The club’s inaugural home game is Wed., April 8, at 7:00 p.m. MT against Portland. For tickets and more information, please visit www.RealMonarchs.com.