POSTED: January 21st 2016

Olympics: NFL relocation of the Rams to boost LA 2024 Bid

The Rams will play at a new, state-of-the-art, privately-financed stadium in Inglewood in the Greater Los Angeles area / LA 2024
The Rams will play at a new, state-of-the-art, privately-financed stadium in Inglewood in the Greater Los Angeles area / LA 2024

The stadium will be covered by a transparent roof and seat 70,000 to 100,000 spectators / LA 2024
The stadium will be covered by a transparent roof and seat 70,000 to 100,000 spectators / LA 2024

DR. ERIC C. SCHWARZ / Sports Features Communications  

(SFC) The National Football league (NFL) last week announced that it has approved the move of the St Louis Rams back to Los Angeles, 20 years after leaving the City of Angels.  The NFL has also given the San Diego Chargers one year to decide if they would like to join the Rams in Los Angeles.

A major part of the NFL's return to Los Angeles is centered on a brand-new 80,000 seat stadium complex and entertainment district on a 300-acre development in the Inglewood section of the city.  The stadium, which could be converted to a capacity of 100,000 spectators for special events, is expected to be the most expensive stadium built in the world, with an expected price tag of $2.6 billion USD.  To put this in perspective, MetLife Stadium in New York - currently the most expensive stadium project to date - cost more than $1 billion USD less than this new stadium project in Los Angeles.

Speaking on behalf of the LA2024 bid committee, Chairman Casey Wasserman said "The best sports city in America just got better. On behalf of LA 2024, we are thrilled to welcome the news that the NFL's Rams will be returning to Los Angeles and playing in a brand new, state-of-the-art stadium in the 2019 season. The Rams and their elite facilities will be another asset to LA's already world-class sports portfolio, and another demonstration that Los Angeles offers compelling sporting and commercial opportunities. It is for good reason that LA is home to ten professional major league teams and over 1,000 Olympians and Paralympians.

While the NFL fans of Los Angeles are the big winners in that football returns to their city, there is another significant benefactor to this stadium project - the Los Angeles 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic bid committee also becomes a significant benefactor to this stadium project.  With the new stadium expected to open in 2019, the bid committee can now include this privately-funded state-of-the-art facility, as well as the anticipated additional 6,000-seat performance venue as part of an entertainment district expected to be twice the size of Disney World in Florida, in their bid plans.

According to Wasserman, "The wealth of existing and planned infrastructure in the City of Angels means LA 2024 has the luxury of selecting the best choices for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, not building them from scratch. And the new NFL stadium represents an opportunity to add to the array of high-quality venues we already have in our Games Plan."

In consideration of Olympic Agenda 2020, this also provides another opportunity for the LA2024 bid committee to reduce costs as they now have another facility at their fingertips for use which is privately funded, and becomes one less facility that would have to be paid for, built, or renovated.

So now the biggest question... will the Los Angeles Coliseum hosts its third opening and closing ceremonies for an Olympics (previously in 1932 and 1984)... or does LA2024 now have an option to promote these hallmark events in the new state-of-the-art facility?  Stay tuned....

**DR. ERIC C. SCHWARZ is a tenured Senior Lecturer of Sport Management at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia.  He has been an academician for 16 years in the areas of sport business management, international tourism, and hospitality management - with special focus on the areas of sport marketing, sport finance, tourism, and facility/event management.  He speaks globally and is the author of numerous publications in these areas, as well as been actively involved in consulting projects working with a multitude of sport and community organizations ranging from grassroots efforts to hallmark events.  

Keywords · Olympics · Los Angeles 2024 · Rams · NFL · Eric Schwarz

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