Los Angeles is probably better off without an NFL team, but the battle to build a professional football stadium is so full of bombshells, we should at least keep the fun going for a while: today the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders, both formerly of Los Angeles, are announcing a proposal to build a shared stadium in the South Bay suburb of Carson. Carson! Why not? It's already got an MLS stadium (StubHub Center) and that seems to be going well. Rumors surfaced in December that two unnamed NFL teams were sniffing around a roughly 170-acre site by the 405/110 interchange that's home to Victoria Park and a golf course (and which used to be a landfill). The teams told the LA Times that "We are pursuing this stadium option in Carson for one straightforward reason: If we cannot find a permanent solution in our home markets, we have no alternative but to preserve other options to guarantee the future economic viability of our franchises."
The Chargers and Raiders seems to have been forced into the big reveal by Stan Kroenke, owner of the St. Louis Rams (also late of Los Angeles), who announced in January plans to an NFL stadium at the site of the multi-use Hollywood Park redevelopment in Inglewood. That plan is moving very quickly; the developers cleverly collected signatures to put the plan on a city ballot rather than taking it through the lengthy and potentially litigation-laden environmental review process. And guess what the Chargers and Raiders have decided to do: they'll " immediately launch a petition drive for a ballot initiative."
(There are sixish total plans for NFL stadiums around Los Angeles, including pretty dead-looking ones in Downtown LA and Industry. The league, however, has made it clear that it is the only entity that can decide to move a team.)
The Chargers and Raiders' stadium plan would supposedly cost $1.7 billion, which they say will be privately financed, although the public generally ends up shelling out something in these affairs (for instance, for infrastructure improvements around the site, or in tax rebates, or tax rebates for infrastructure improvements).
The Chargers say a quarter of their fans are in LA and the OC; the Raiders say they just can't afford a stadium on their own. Both teams are on year-to-year leases and are hoping their home cities will shell out for new digs.
· Chargers, Raiders propose shared NFL stadium in Carson [LAT]
· Two NFL Teams Sniffing Around Possible Carson Stadium Site [Curbed LA]
· Rams Owner Planning to Build an NFL Stadium in Inglewood [Curbed LA]
· The Six Possible Plans For a Los Angeles NFL Stadium [Curbed LA]