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USL Super League's Tampa Bay team wants to make Blake High School its temporary home

A rendering of an expanded waterfront stadium next to the Hillsborough River.
Super League Tampa Bay
Super League Tampa Bay said it seeks to partner with Hillsborough County Public Schools to play at Blake High School. The team would provide permanent upgrades to the stadium, which is located along the Hillsborough River in the city's West Tampa neighborhood.

The team wants to partner with Hillsborough County Public Schools to play at the school's waterfront stadium. If the proposal is approved, the team will expand the stadium's capacity from 1,800 to around 5,000.

A new women's pro soccer team wants to open play next year in an expanded waterfront stadium in downtown Tampa.

Super League Tampa Bay said it seeks to partner with Hillsborough County Public Schools to play at Blake High School, according to a news release. Blake High, which opened in 1956, was one of only two high schools open to Black students during the segregation era.

“Our schools have been the site of so much history, and the birthplace of so many important traditions,” Tampa Mayor Jane Castor said in the release. “It will be wonderful to add to that legacy with this new soccer team. There’s something special about sports that brings out the best in people and brings people together.”

The team would provide permanent upgrades to the stadium, which is located along the Hillsborough River in the city's West Tampa neighborhood. It will also install new turf and pay for enhancements along the Blake campus.

“The spirit of competition is very strong in us, but so is the spirit of community. Our team is ready to deliver a positive impact that benefits families in Tampa Bay, and this partnership would elevate everyone,” Super League Tampa Bay President Christina Unkel said in the release.

If the proposal for the stadium is approved, the team will expand the stadium's capacity from 1,800 to around 5,000. The Hillsborough County School Board will vote on the partnership on Tuesday, Oct. 17.

The Tampa Bay franchise, announced back in May, is part of a new United Soccer League Super League. It still does not have a team name, colors or crest.

In July, the University of South Florida announced its longtime women’s soccer coach Denise Schilte-Brown would join the club. She will assume her new position at season’s end.

The team plans to kick off in August 2024. It would play its first several seasons at Blake as it develops a plan for a permanent soccer stadium.

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