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Will Raiders Share Newly Approved Santa Clara Stadium? Fan’s View
The Oakland Raiders need a new stadium. They currently play in the aging O.co Coliseum on a lease that runs out after the 2013 season. The facility first hosted a professional football game in 1966 and while there have been renovations, it just doesn't compare to a modern facility. Playing in the stadium isn't just inconvenient and uncomfortable for the team, I think they are losing money each year, compared all the revenue sources a new facility can provide.
I want the team to return to Los Angeles, to play in one of the two proposed NFL stadiums to be constructed for them, but I really have a feeling they will end up moving across town to Santa Clara, instead of south to L.A. The city of Santa Clara, a suburb of San Francisco, has just approved a deal and a lease for a proposed new stadium for the San Francisco 49ers. The $1 billion dollar project will provide a lot of revenue for the city and to me, represents the future of public - private partnerships for building large projects like this. The city receives revenue from the 49ers and NFL games, along with money from non-NFL events like concerts. The city also owns the parking lot where most stadium visitors will park.
The proposed stadium could handle two teams and I really think the Raiders will end up playing there, as opposed to moving down to Los Angeles. The facility is expected to open in 2014 and I think the Raiders will end up signing a shorter lease deal, like ten years, which would still allow them to pursue a new facility in Oakland or even negotiate a move to Los Angeles.
I get the idea legendary Raiders owner Al Davis had long been opposed to sharing a stadium. In fact, it was just the possibility of that happening in Los Angeles that killed a stadium deal in the 1990s that would have kept the team in L.A. A new stadium project to be built next to the Forum was financed and even approved by the league. When the league demanded the Raiders allow for the future potential of sharing the facility with another team (probably the Rams at that time), Davis said no, packed up the team and moved them back to Oakland.
The city of Oakland has no viable plans to build the team a new stadium. There are proposals to build a Sports Village multi-use development on the site of the current stadium, which would include a new NFL stadium, but no financing is in place.
Although born and raised with Eagles fans in Philadelphia, Freddy Sherman has always been a citizen of Raider Nation at heart. Since his dad got him a signed George Blanda football as child, to meeting Lyle Alzado in the 1980s, he hasn't looked back. Follow him on twitter @thefredsherman
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