The basics, per the UPoR:

The city of Charlotte is considering using tourism money to help demolish and rebuild American Legion Memorial Stadium in Elizabeth to become a home for a Major League Soccer franchise.

Local investors who bought a Charlotte minor-league soccer team last year have said they would like to land a Major League Soccer team in Charlotte.

Jim McPhilliamy, president and managing partner of the team, the Charlotte Independence, has had several meetings with the Mecklenburg Park and Recreation Department – which owns the stadium – the city and the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority.

A favored concept would be to demolish the existing stadium, which was built in the 1930s. After being rebuilt, the field would be wider – 75 yards across – to accommodate an MLS team.

It would first be rebuilt with about 9,000 seats to handle events such as high school football that the stadium hosts. The stadium now has about 20,000 seats.

It would be expanded to as many as 20,000 or 25,000 seats if the city lands an MLS team. That second phase of construction would likely include suites and other amenities that an MLS team would desire.

Questions, in no particular order:

• How much would it cost to rebuild Memorial Stadium? And what’s the split between the city, county, and “local investors.” If the project goes over budget, who pays?

• How much professional sports can Charlotte actually support? And if Charlotte doesn’t support McPhilliamy’s vision, who’s on the hook?

• How much “tourism money” does this leave the city with? And is this the best use of such funds, given that the Panthers will eventually come calling seeking big bucks for either additional Bank of America Stadium upgrades or a new football palace?

• Is rebuilding Memorial Stadium even the best use of that land? (I’m pretty sure that CPCC would love to put something on the site.) And how would a more modern stadium with more large-scale events impact CPCC?