Current Stadium & Arena Deals
Stadiums & Arenas (1990-Present)
Current Naming Rights Deals
Summary of Current National Football League Stadium Deals (from conception to completion)
Updated September 9, 2003
Figures compiled by Shawn McCarthy, League of Fans.
League of Fans
Sources: FieldOfSchemes.com, National Sports Law Institute of Marquette University Law School's "Sports Facility Reports", Cato Institute, ballparks.com, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and wire and newspaper reports published on or before September 9, 2003.
Stage of Progress for Current NFL Stadium Deals (from conception to completion)
Stage #1 = Announcements, Rumors & Threats with no Proposal on the Table:
Stage #2 = Proposal on the Table, Subject to Vote, Approval, or Financing:
Stage #3 = Proposal Approved, Advanced Planning Underway, Financing Secured:
Stage #4 = Stadium Under Construction:
(listed alphabetically by franchise)
New Stadium Estimated Cost:
County Public Subsidy:
Status (Stage #4):
Voters narrowly passed a stadium referendum (Prop 302) on election day, November 7, 2000, to finance a retractable-roof stadium as part of a $1.8 billion sports-and-tourism package, to be funded by car-rental and hotel taxes.
This was a reversal of a referendum in May, 1999, when voters in Mesa, Arizona overwhelmingly turned down a similar deal by a 60-40 margin. To help turn the tide, the pro-stadium "Arizona Wins", outspent stadium opponents by a margin of $1,700,000 to $215, helping to erase what had been a 15-point poll deficit for the stadium plan just over one month before the vote.
Stadium construction finally began on March 12, 2003 and is expected to open in August, 2006.
Status (Stage #1):
"The Dallas Cowboys issued their long-rumored pitch for a new stadium . . . proposing a $900 million complex of restaurants, shops, a 1,000-seat hotel, and, oh yes, a stadium - the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink paradigm that's become increasingly popular with teams hoping to get around charges that stadiums themselves are a bad economic investment. The second most valuable sports franchise on earth wants the public to kick in $400 million or more in construction costs; if team owner Jerry Jones gets his way, a voter referendum could be on the ballot as early as November." - from FieldOfSchemes.com (4/2/03)
Status (Stage #1):
The Indianapolis Star reported (04/05/02) that Colts' owner James Irsay has begun negotiations with Indianapolis officials that could lead to another overhaul of the 18 year old RCA Dome, or possibly a new retractable-roof stadium. Irsay is thought to be considering moving the team to Los Angeles if revenue streams fail to lift the Colts to the league average.
As part of a 1998 leases renegotiation, the city provided $20 million for renovation to build bigger and better suites and more club seats to the RCA Dome. In addition, the new lease agreement provides the team with 100% of suite license fees, where it had previously been 50%.
". . . the Indianapolis Star reports that neither the city of Indianapolis nor the Indianapolis Colts are talking about a new stadium for the NFL team, which plays in the 20-year-old RCA Dome. That notwithstanding, rumors are that the city and Colts are indeed close to cutting a deal for a new stadium. Since January, Indianapolis has been paying Rick Horrow, a longtime stadium booster and paid consultant to the NFL, $14,000 a month to renegotiate its lease with the Colts. . . ." - from FieldOfSchemes.com (7/21/03)
Kansas City Cheifs
Renovated Stadium Estimated Cost (from latest proposal):
State Public Subsidy:
Status (Stage #1):
The Kansas City Star reported that on April 8, 2002, Missouri Governor Bob Holden endorsed a proposal to use $294 million in state money for renovations to the Truman Sports Complex which includes Kauffman Stadium (MLB's Royals) and Arrowhead Stadium (Chiefs).
For the plan to take effect, the Missouri State Legislature must approve the proposal and voters in the state of Kansas and the state of Missouri would have to renew a bi-state sales tax for cultural projects, which would generate an estimated $300 million. Half of the bi-state money would go for renovations at the Truman Sports Complex, and half would go for cultural projects in both states. The bi-state proposal has reportedly been put on hold until 2004.
This proposal was tied to state subsidies for a new ballpark for the St. Louis Cardinals (MLB). Kansas City area legislators upset at the Cardinals repeated attempts to secure legislative approval to force state taxpayers to subsidize a new ballpark in St. Louis insisted that Kansas City must be part of any proposal for stadium funding.
The push for the renovated Royals and Chiefs stadiums along with the new Cardinals stadium collapsed on May 17, 2002 as the Missouri state legislature declined to vote on the bill prior to adjournment.
Status (Stage #1):
Recent proposals have the Vikings sharing a new stadium with the University of Minnesota's football team on the school's campus. A football stadium could potentially cost as much as $440 million. The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that the University is skeptical of the Vikings' position which might push the school into developing a facility that's plusher than needed, and that the school would get stuck with the debt if the Vikings were sold or left Minnesota.
The Vikings' lease agreement at the Metrodome runs through 2011, yet have threatened to relocate to San Antonio (McCombs' home and business location) or Los Angeles because the Metrodome doesn't provide them with enough revenue.
"On the non-threat threat front, you gotta give props to Minnesota Vikings stadium lobbyist Lester Bagley, who recently told local sports editors: ‘This community needs to find a solution to keep the team in this market,' then when asked where else the team would go, added: ‘We try to get our ownership not to talk about other markets. It's not helpful in a public relations sense.'" - from FieldOfSchemes.com (7/21/03)
New Orleans Saints
Status (Stage #1):
A state-appointed commission has been assigned to study and make recommendations as to the future of the 27-year old Louisiana Superdome. The recommendations, mainly between renovation of the Superdome and construction of a new stadium, are not due until 2004.
In the meantime, to prevent Saints' owner Tom Benson from relocating, a ten-year, $186 million "inducement" package was approved by the Louisiana State Legislature in March 2002. The New Orleans Times Picayune reported that the package will be financed mainly through local taxes and stadium-generated money, such as giving the team free use of the Superdome, a bigger cut of concessions and profits from the sale of naming rights to the facility. In addition, the state will provide $6 million from its general fund for the majority of the cost of an indoor practice facility for the Saints.
New York Jets
Status (Stage #1):
Robert Wood Johnson IV, owner of the Jets, stated that after the Jets lease with Giants Stadium expires in 2008, the team would leave for another facility on Manhattan's West Side.
The initial rumors for this plan involves a $1 billion retractable-roof structure. Planned as an expansion of the Javits Convention Center, this stadium is tied to New York's bid to land the 2012 Olympics. Mayor Michael Bloomberg seems interested as, prior to his election, Bloomberg was on the Board of Directors of the Olympic bid, "NYC2012." And the founder of the bid, Daniel Doctoroff, was selected by Bloomberg as his Deputy Mayor.
Local neighborhood groups say that it appears to be turning into a massive land grab to free the far West Side for developers and corporations to extend Manhattan's central business district into the Chelsea and Hell's Kitchen neighborhoods where taxpayer subsidies would be used, via eminent domain, to uproot and displace West Side neighborhood residents and local businesses.
"To the surprise of no one, New York City's $3.7 billion plan to build an Olympic stadium and other development on Manhattan's West Side is running into money troubles. Deputy mayor for economic development (and former NYC2012 president, and West Side landowner) Dan Doctoroff abandoned his initial tax increment financing (TIF) plan in February in favor of payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT), which is largely the same plan under a different name. Now comes word from the city planning department that in order to generate enough revenue to pay off the mammoth project, they'll need to project 40 million square feet of office space development, double the initial estimate. ‘They are trying to make the finances fit by increasing the commercial space,' West Side community activist John Fisher told Newsday. ‘They're just pulling numbers out of the sky.'" - from FieldOfSchemes.com (6/1/03)
"The New York Jets are suing the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, saying the agency is overcharging them for rent at Giants Stadium by about $2 million a year. At issue is a lease extension the authority gave to the New York Giants in 1999, lowering their rent from 15% of ticket revenues to 10%. The Jets say a clause in their lease bars the authority from charging them more rent than the Giants; NJSEA executive George Zoffinger says that the minute the Jets agree to a lease extension of their own (the Jets lease expires in 2008), they can have a rent cut, adding: ‘This suit is an attempt to squeeze more taxpayers' money out of us at the same time they're trying to convince New York to build them a new $3 billion stadium.'" - from FieldOfSchemes.com (5/30/03)
San Diego Chargers
Status (Stage #1):
"The San Diego Chargers issued their long-expected demand for a new football stadium . . .: $200 million in public funds, to pay for half the construction costs of a $400 million facility that would replace Qualcomm Stadium. Team officials claimed that the public funding could be generated by selling part of the Qualcomm site to create an ‘urban village' that would generate additional property taxes; however, Citizens' Task Force on Chargers Issues David Watson pointed out that only part of that revenue would go to the city, with the rest reserved for other agencies." - from FieldOfSchemes.com (1/17/03)
"NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue has threatened that if San Diego doesn't build a new stadium for the Chargers,  will be the last Super Bowl played in the city. Most San Diegans, according to the L.A. Times, couldn't care less. Which is as it should be, say sports economists." - from FieldOfSchemes.com (1/26/03)
"San Diego Mayor Dick Murphy, in response to [a] move by the San Diego Chargers to initiate the ‘trigger clause' in their lease that would let them move out of town, has demanded financial records from both the team and the NFL to see whether the trigger conditions were legally met. (The conditions involve a complicated mechanism comparing team payroll to NFL revenues.) Meanwhile, city council members are taking an increasingly hard line against building a new stadium with public money: ‘The Chargers think the language means, ‘We trigger, so let's talk about a new stadium," councilman Michael Zucchet told the San Diego Union-Tribune. ‘I certainly don't see it that way.'" - from FieldOfSchemes.com (3/6/03)
"Recently, there has been the question of the so-called trigger -- a financial threshold that would permit the Chargers to compel the city to negotiate a new deal. When the Chargers said they could trigger earlier this year, the city relied on the word of a sports consultant who is paid to help pro teams maximize the amount they suck out of city governments. Councilmember Donna Frye hired a nationally known economist who said the Chargers could not trigger. The city ignored the economist and began negotiating with the team without saying whether the Chargers could trigger. ‘They adopted a policy of negotiating a new contract in secret without determining if they were required to negotiate a contract,' says attorney Mike Aguirre." - from the San Diego Reader (7/10/03)
"The Chargers claim they can put together a deal [for a new stadium] without tapping public funds. But San Diego has heard that twice before. There was the remake of what is now Qualcomm, with the purportedly wondrous 60,000-seat guarantee, and then the ballpark, which was to be financed by taxes thrown off by commercial structures, particularly hotels, that are nowhere in sight.
The new Chargers proposal will definitely drain city funds; the question is how it will be covered up. Watch for several things: the team will try to wiggle out of $150 million in rent owed for the next 16 years; the team will get the land virtually free from the city; promises will be neither memorialized nor enforced; there will be a promise of a luscious public park; and the city and team will claim the deal doesn't impact the general fund, which will be deceitfully defined.
Another distinct possibility: the Chargers will want to lose a 2006 vote, so they can leave town claiming they were shoved." - from the San Diego Reader (7/10/03)
San Francisco 49ers
New Stadium Estimated Cost (from latest proposal):
City Public Subsidy:
Status (Stage #1):
In 1997, San Francisco voters approved a cap of $100 million in city funds to help with the construction of a new stadium for the 49ers. Since then, legal troubles of team owner Eddie DeBartolo along with ownership and management changes in the organization have stalled the stadium deal.
The proposed stadium - shopping mall package at Candlestick Point was tabbed at $525 million in 1997 and would likely be over $600 million by now. The 49ers may decide to look at other locations since they would have to finance all but $100 million themselves. The team has yet to figure out a way to raise the rest of the project money not covered by the $100 million bond measure approved by San Francisco voters in 1997.