- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 26, 2017

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - The Portland Timbers have unveiled plans for a privately funded addition to Providence Park that would add 4,000 seats.

The estimated cost of the expansion project is $50 million, paid for by the Timbers. It would add four levels to the east side of Providence Park.

The Timbers are popular in Portland with 112 straight sellouts of their downtown stadium that seats 21,144. There are some 13,000 fans on the waiting list for season tickets.

“For the last several years we’ve been studying how we can expand Providence Park, and keep this amazing essence and environment that we’ve built, but also allow up to 4,000 more fans to attend our games on a regular basis. So today we announced plans to do just that,” Timbers President of Business Mike Golub said Wednesday.

The MLS club will have its first meeting with the city’s Design Commission on May 11. The commission must approve the plan before it can move forward.

The team’s operating agreement will also have to be amended to reflect the expansion, which must be approved by the City Council.

If the expansion is approved, the Timbers expect complete it in two phases over the course of two offseasons, possibly starting late this year.

The process really started back in 2012, the Timbers’ second season in Major League Soccer.

“We saw where our demand was, we also saw where the league economics and growth as going, and we know that for us to be viable and competitive not and well into the future that we had to make plans,” Golub said. “We’ve been thinking about it for quite some time.”

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