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KANSAS CITY, KS-The Kansas City Wizards will break ground next week on a new soccer stadium to go up in Village West. The $400 million project will locate in Kansas near the Kansas Speedway, as opposed to Missouri, which was vying for the stadium to anchor its $1 billion redevelopment of the Bannister Mall area.

The project, which has been on the drawing board for months, was up in the air over concerns about the ability to sell $147 million in STAR bonds to finance the construction. Both states were attempting to sweeten the deal with incentive plans.

The current plans call for a 18,500-seat stadium as well as an office park for Cerner Corp.

“Based on the information that we’ve received from the bond financing community, we are now confident that bonds can be sold,” says Robb Heineman, president of the Wizards, in a statement. “In fact, although the formal agreements have yet to be inked, we’re confident enough in the pace and direction that, starting next week, you’ll begin to see yellow machines on site at Village West in Kansas moving dirt, at our expense.”

Lane4 Property Group Inc. has been named developer of the projectBy the beginning of March, the Wizards will work to finalize the stadium design, begin construction, sell the STAR bonds and get all the formal agreements in place.

“I anticipate that we will have a formal announcement with all the partners on stage following document signing – OnGoal, Cerner, the State of Kansas and the Unified Government,” Heineman says. “It’s going to take us through the holidays to get the agreements completed, but we’re feeling very good about what great partners we have on this project and the progress being made.”

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