• 9 Investigates actual cost to shift location of Orlando soccer stadium

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    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - It's appears to be a small change for Orlando's soon-to-be-built soccer stadium, but 9 Investigates has learned that moving the site of the stadium just one block will cost taxpayers $15 million.
     
    Last month Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said the city would save money by moving the stadium and avoiding an expensive legal battle with a small church.
     
    Channel 9's Lori Brown has learned that the move will cost more than the mayor suggested.
     
    After Faith Deliverance Temple refused to give up its land for $4 million, Dyer announced the city could shift the stadium west for about the same amount.
     
    "We know it will cost about $4 million to locate the stadium on the western property," Dyer said at an Aug. 4 news conference.
     
    Brown said the only city document she found with a $4 million estimate was a hand-scratched note from the same day Dyer spoke at the news conference.
     
    Other documents Brown uncovered show moving the stadium will cost $15 million.
     
    Among the expenses: 

    • New traffic signals: $700,000
    • Closing Parramore Street: $100,000
    • Moving the fire station: $4 million
    • Creating a temporary fire station: $984,000
    • Demolishing the north pond: $2.8 million 
    • Modifying the south pond: $2.3 million
    • Building a new pond: $3.9 million

     
    At the same, time city leaders are considering raising property taxes by 18 percent. They said that would raise about $17 million.
     
    "It's outrageous to think our taxes are being increased, our services are being cut, all while the city is spending millions on projects like this," said Mike Cantone, with Orange County Tax Watch.
     
    A city representative said a new pond -- costing $4 million -- may not be needed and said the City Council already voted to move the fire station back in February. But that vote came well after the church refused to move.
     
    "I think the mayor has been dishonest," said Cantone. "Are they fighting for taxpayers, or are they fighting for private millionaires?"
     
    The final vote on the proposal to increase taxes is Monday.
     
    The total public cost of the soccer stadium now stands at $45 million.
               
     
     


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