SBD/March 5, 2013/Facilities

AEG's Farmers Field Plan For Downtown L.A. Reportedly "Dead To The NFL"

NFL officials believe the $1.8B cost will make the stadium "unworkable"
AEG’s proposed Farmers Field in downtown L.A. is "essentially dead to the NFL” less than six months after the L.A. City Council voted unanimously to support it, according to sources cited by Jason Cole of YAHOO SPORTS. The problems with the plan are "numerous, but the most essential one is the economics.” A source said, “The numbers just don't work, no matter how you look at the deal. It's either too hard for AEG to make money (and pay the debt on the stadium) or too hard for the team. I just can't see a way for it to work." Cole wrote, “Unofficially, the NFL believes that the cost of the AEG plan, which the league believes will be at least $1.8 billion, will make it unworkable.” AEG has been “hoping to build a stadium on space that currently occupies the convention center and is across the street from the Staples Center/L.A. Live complex.” While the league had been “intrigued by the idea for a couple of years, the economics and the cramped conditions that would come with shoe-horning a stadium into that area would leave the site unacceptable for what the NFL wants and needs to be successful when it returns to the city.” AEG President & CEO Tim Leiweke has said that his company is “open to changing the plan.” But any system that involves an NFL team renting a stadium from AEG "seems unworkable.” There also is "the issue of who's going to buy AEG.” The NFL in the meantime “has again started to focus on other locations" around L.A, such as Hollywood Park in Inglewood and Majestic Realty President & Chair Ed Roski's site in City of Industry. A source said that the “only answer may be for a particularly wealthy owner to pick a site and make it work” (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 3/4).
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