Photo via CSN Bay Area
The NFL has not only left three cities behind in the past 15 months, but it has also left about $220 million in debt for those cities to pay off on the table, according to USA TODAY’s Brent Schrotenboer.
Among the cities impacted will be Oakland, St. Louis and San Diego. Below is the financial breakdown of each.
When the Oakland Raiders returned to East Bay in 1995, the city paid for renovations and the addition of “Mount Davis” to the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. Those improvements have already cost the city $110 million, with close to $90 million still left to pay off over the next decade.
Shortly after the Raiders’ return to Oakland, the Coliseum had quickly become the worst revenue-draining facility in the NFL.
Despite the enormous debt they will leave behind, the Raiders will now move on to Las Vegas to enjoy their new $1.9 billion digs opening in 2020.
St. Louis lured the Los Angeles Rams back by constructing a $300 million domed stadium in 1995. Of that $300 million, St. Louis still has $85 million left to pay off for the original construction.
Kitty Ratcliffe, the president of the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission, said Rams games produced a net loss of $400,000 each year, per Schrotenboer.
Despite the relatively young age of their facility and large amount of debt to pay off on it, the Rams moved back to L.A. last year as they await the privately financed, $2.6 billion stadium to be located in Inglewood and set to open in 2019.
In the 1990s, San Diego borrowed $68 million to pay for renovations of Qualcomm Stadium as well as for an upgraded Chargers practice facility. The city was also forced to pay $12 million each year for stadium maintenance.
In 2017, the city still owes $47 million on those renovations despite the fact the Chargers bolted (you see what I did there?) for Los Angeles, where they will play in a soccer stadium before ultimately joining the Rams in Inglewood.