ST. LOUIS – The new home of Major League Soccer’s St. Louis CITY SC, CITYPARK stadium, will host its first match Wednesday when CITY2 hosts Bayer Leverkusen.

“The Arch is a wonderful iconic symbol,” said Lee Broughton, chief brand architect of St. Louis CITY SC. “Gateway Mall is a beautiful area of pedestrian walkways and coffee shops, and then it abruptly ends without any pomp and ceremony.”

Management hopes the stadium serves as an anchor for the Downtown West neighborhood, helping the club establish a bond with the community.

St. Louis CITY SC leaders thought about the east and west terraces, which will provide a game day experience for fans. There is no back door in the stadium.

Broughton and Chief Experience Officer Matt Sebek said they did not want to build a spaceship-like stadium for those that live and work in the area. They wanted to make sure the stadium’s height was not foreboding.

“We’re a post-pandemic club and really able to take advantage of researching other clubs and seeing how fans are reacting and how their behaviors have changed,” Sebek said. “Taking advantage of the latest and greatest technology. We’re a paperless venue, cashless venue, ticketless venue, and being frictionless. Using technology to bring people around the space.”

The deliberation was done by the ownership to think about variety, from the architecture and overhang panels that mimic the Gateway Arch to the food options, with Gerard Craft.

“Then these pillars echo what the Arch is doing on the west side of the mall,” Broughton said. “The other piece is by moving the stadium north; it was a real symbol of making sure north, south, east, and west are invited to the stadium. This is why the corners are porous, completely open. Each side is a gate—as you’re a ticket holder—to come in.”