The tagline of Detroit City FC’s unprecedented community investment campaign to rehabilitate Keyworth Stadium in Hamtramck, Mich., has been “Save History, Make History.”
On February 15 at 11:59 p.m., history was made.
To DCFC’s knowledge, it is the largest project of its kind in state history. Utilizing the Michigan MILE legislation, 527 verified Michigan investors pledged $741,250.
The campaign, which began on October 29, spanned a total of 109 days. The club aimed to raise between $400,000 and $750,000 in order to fund the improvements. Investment tiers ranged from $250 to $50,000.
Renovation of the 80-year-old stadium has begun in time to allow Le Rouge to take to the pitch for the start of the 2016 season in May. The construction planning includes structural improvements to the grandstands, and mending of bleachers, locker rooms, restrooms, and lighting.
The final investment figure will be released to investors in April. The number may fluctuate based on attrition from those who pledged an amount, but never signed a subscription agreement or sent in an investment payment prior to the deadline.
The results of City’s community-based campaign are a resounding boost to the future of the city and the sport of soccer in Michigan.
“Detroit City FC was created around the principle: for soccer to succeed in Detroit in the long-term, it needs to be done right with a grassroots focus on supporters and the community,” Detroit City FC co-owner Sean Mann said. “From the everyday supporters to household personalities, from start-up businesses to some of the region’s largest corporations, each of their investments in the Keyworth campaign has been a resounding endorsement of this approach to finding a home for soccer in Detroit.”
Detroit City FC partnered with Sidewalk Ventures, LLC, MichiganFunders, and Hamtramck Public Schools on this project.
“With over 500 investors making a commitment to this campaign, it has been a delight to see all the different reasons why people support the project and believe in the quality of the investment,” Sidewalk Ventures founder Jeff Aronoff said. “And closing the investment offering is just the end of the beginning. The real fun will be discovering everything this club and its supporters can accomplish at Keyworth.”
“It’s been amazing to watch the people of greater Detroit, whether old or new fans of DCFC, come together to make this happen,” MichiganFunders founder Niles Heron said. “That DCFC was able to pool and pull this much capital from the community in which they live and breathe is a testament to the power that this model has. Many small hands working together, can truly wield significant economic power, and this is proof of that. MichiganFunders is incredibly proud to be a part of this story, and is excited to see everyone at Keyworth this summer.”
“The excitement in the Hamtramck school community is building as the reality of DCFC actually playing at Keyworth continues as our goal has been reached,” Superintendent of Hamtramck Public Schools Tomas Niczay said. “Once the games start the school community excitement likely will be at a fever pitch.”
With this historic accomplishment behind the club, the work is far from done for DCFC. In the upcoming weeks, the team will be releasing updates on their continuing construction at Keyworth Stadium, as well as ticket releases and details about the 2016 season.