ROCK HILL, S.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – Construction has stopped on the new Carolina Panthers’ Rock Hill facility after one of its funding partners failed to make a payment, Tepper Sports & Entertainment confirmed Monday.

Team owner and billionaire hedge funder David Tepper, along with his group Tepper Sports Entertainment, announced last year that a new state-of-the-art facility housing the teams’ headquarters would be built just over the South Carolina state line in Rock Hill.

The Rock: Panthers new headquarters takes shape in Rock Hill

The project was said to be costing approximately $800 million in public and private money. That total was said to include improvements to area roads, sewage, and power.

The City of Rock Hill was expected to make a payment in March of 2021 and did not while the team continued in good faith with the project, TSE said. They say it is a ‘pause’ in work, indicating that work will ultimately resume at some point.

When Tepper took over as the team’s owner in 2018, the Panthers didn’t have an indoor practice facility.

The 600,000-square-foot structure is five stories high and will include 8,875 total tons of structural steel, more than 75 miles of PVC conduit, 2.5 million feet of wire, and 4,145 light fixtures. There are more than 340 workers on site, but those numbers will increase to 800 at maximum workforce, and the team is using 118 area firms as part of the project.

Tepper and the Panthers have also been in negotiations to buy land where Charlotte Pipe and Foundry is located nearby the current stadium to potentially build an entertainment district, and possibly a new stadium.

The Rock Hill headquarters, which would house practice facilities as well as administrative and medical personnel, was set to be completed in 2023.

TSE released the following statement to Queen City News:

“We are committed to bettering the Carolinas community that supports our team and players. To that end, while GT Real Estate Holdings, LLC has invested more than $170 million into the development in Rock Hill, our partners have been unable to contribute the agreed-upon investment to fund the construction of the public infrastructure. 

Given the economic realities, the difficult but prudent decision has been made to pause the project. The ongoing work will continue with our partners to find an economically acceptable solution for all parties to continue this project in Rock Hill.” 

York County sent a statement to Queen City News:

York County Government is aware of the announcement by the Carolina Panthers halting construction on the team headquarters and practice facility in Rock Hill.  Although York County is not responsible for funding the infrastructure at the site, County staff is in communication with the Carolina Panthers, and hopes to work toward a solution that protects County taxpayers.

City of Rock Hill sent a statement to Queen City News:

“The City was unaware of any planned pause in construction of the Panthers facility. The City has met all obligations required under the agreement, and is not aware of any March 2021 payment obligation. The City intends to continue honoring our agreement with the Panthers and fully supports the project.”

Courtesy – Fox 46 Charlotte & Nexstar Media Wire