The New York City Football Club’s proposed 25,000-seat stadium in Willets Point plans to go fully electric. It would be the first MLS stadium and first professional sports stadium in New York City to do so when it opens in 2027 nearby Citi Field and the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
The NYCFC’s announcement of a fully electric building falls in line with the club’s stated desires to build out a meaningful sustainability plan. The first fully electric venue in professional sports is in Seattle where Climate Pledge Arena, home of the NHL’s Seattle Kraken, also became the first net zero carbon certified arena.
Plans in New York for an all-electric building include constructing a stadium with an array of solar panels installed on the roof, along with an emergency backup generator to operate during a utility power outage. Along with the all-electric effort, the proposed stadium for NYCFC, designed by HOK, will features a water harvesting system below the field to capture rainwater for irrigation. The water system will also include strategies to reduce water usage throughout the venue.
During construction of the new venue, the team pledges to source local materials whenever possible to reduce transportation impacts. The finished product will also include natural ventilation to reduce energy consumption.
Once open, NYCFC says it has committed to reducing waste at the source and plans to explore options for on-site composting of waste.
“New York City Football Club is proud to release details of what would be a historic first-ever fully electric professional sports stadium for both MLS and New York City,” Brad Sims, NYCFC CEO says in a statement. “Sustainability is at the heart of this project, and we’re focused on ensuring that the club is leading the way when it comes to reducing environmental impact. We’re committed to building a stadium that serves as a model for projects in the future.”
Sims says that through renewable energy, the use of efficient materials, waste reduction and compliance, they believe they can deliver a sustainable home.
“New York City Football Club’s sustainability plan sets out clear priorities on our journey to credible net zero by eliminating risk, building resilience and creating opportunities,” Pete Bradshaw, City Football Group’s director of sustainability, says in a statement.
The proposed stadium comes as part of a new planned community. The $780 million privately funded stadium is meant as an amenity to the community.
“Our design team has created a sustainable, technology driven experience and integrated the stadium into the context of a future district,” says Rashed Singaby, HOK principal and senior project designer. “Our goal is to establish a connected urban amenity for the community and an unprecedented live event experience.”
HOK’s design will position the stadium along the edge of 126th Street (Seaver Way). With a “pedestrian-friendly scale,” the team says the stadium will feature technology and flexibility while including a grand arrival experience in the form of the cube entranceway.
Combined with the tennis center and Citi Field, NYCFC believes the addition of the soccer venue will add to the sports and entertainment destination offerings in Queens.
Alongside the stadium, which shows mixed-use potential for the site on non-match days, the team plans a community with affordable housing. The site’s renderings show 2,500 units of affordable housing to anchor the redevelopment that features open common areas. The stie also makes space for small business retail, a pedestrian-friendly main street with local retail, 40,000 square feet of new public open space, a 650-seat public school and a 250-key hotel with ground-floor retail shops.
It all connects to the 25,000-seat soccer-specific—and now fully electric—stadium.