“Gurgling blood” is an unfortunate term to use, but it appears that plans to build the Raiders a stadium in Oakland are nearly dead.
Sources close to the plans in Oakland indicated to the San Francisco Chronicle on Monday that the obstacles standing in the way of building a stadium in the Northern California city are real.
First off, the Raiders want “free land” to build a stadium on. This is obviously something city officials are against.
Second, the Raiders and the National Football League have a total of $500 million to build a stadium right now. This means that at least another $500 million would be needed from either investors or public funds (taxpayers). Needless to say, acquiring public funds is not realistic in Oakland.
Finally, the Raiders are insisting that Oakland Coliseum be destroyed the minute a new stadium breaks ground. That’s also an unrealistic scenario considering the Oakland Athletics are co-tenants with the Raiders in the archaic venue.
“But the real poison pill is the Raiders’ insistence that the minute we start working on the new stadium, the old one comes down,” the source said, adding that owner Mark Davis does not want to be “playing in the middle of a construction zone” that would be required for a new A’s ballpark to be built.”
The source went on to tell the San Francisco Chronicle that “losing the A’s would be suicide for all of us.” This is yet another indication that baseball may be taking precedence over football in Oakland.
This comes on the same day that the Raiders and San Diego Chargers hired former San Francisco 49ers president Carmen Policy to work on persuading the NFL to approve their joint stadium plan in Carson.
After all being quiet on the stadium front for a couple months now, it appears the wheels are in motion here. While the NFL isn’t expected to fully take up relocation until after the 2015 season, it will be interesting to see what comes out of the owners’ meeting in San Francisco this week. That could tell us a lot about the process moving forward.
Photo: SF Chronicle