Months after the Inglewood City Council approved construction of a stadium project seemingly headed by St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke, both the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders received the go-ahead to construct a NFL stadium in Carson, California.
The city council unanimously approved construction of a privately financed $1.7 billion project in the Los Angeles suburb on Tuesday. In doing so, Carson followed the lead of Inglewood, who also bypassed a city-wide vote on the construction plan.
This comes months after the Chargers and Raiders announced a plan to build a joint stadium in Carson. It also comes at a time when talk of relocation in the NFL is heating up.
And while this is just the first step in what will be a drawn-out process, it does signify that something will happen in the nation’s second-largest media market at some point in the not-so-distant future.
The NFL had previously indicated that it would hold off on deciding what plan to support until each one was further along in the process. Now that Inglewood’s plan is set to start construction on the stadium later this year, with Carson to follow shortly thereafter, the league may be pressed into action sooner rather than later. Though, it also has to think about market deficiencies should there be a firm commitment of relocation by any of these teams prior to the end of the upcoming 2015 NFL season.
As it relates to which plan might draw support from the league, it’s way too early to tell. Inglewood is currently months ahead in its plan, but the NFL isn’t going to choose simply based on expediency.
With a backdrop of Los Angeles based Chargers and Raiders fans, council member Albert Robles declared that “football is coming to Carson” shortly after the unanimous vote. While that may be premature, everything is leaning towards a team relocating to L.A. in time for the 2016 season.
The only question that remains is what teams will end up moving. Even as the second-largest media market in the United States, it’s hard to imagine L.A. being able to play host to three squads.
Photo: UT-San Diego