LA NFL stadium developer releases impact plan

By ROBERT JABLON - Associated Press
    2012-04-05 17:28

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A group seeking to bring the NFL back to Los Angeles unveiled a massive environmental plan Thursday, laying out ways to deal with the traffic nightmare that throngs of fans could create around the proposed $1.4 billion downtown stadium on game days.

Required under a state agreement to make the planned 72,000-seat Farmer's Field environmentally friendly, Anschutz Entertainment Group said it will spend about $35 million to reduce the traffic footprint by, among other things, expanding the nearby U.S. 101 freeway and a commuter train station.

The environmental impact report has a goal of having 25 percent of fans use alternative transportation, with 5,000 people estimated to walk or bike to games.

``We have to change people's habits from the day they buy their first ticket,'' AEG President Tim Leiweke said at a City Hall news conference.

Leiweke stressed the stadium's green credentials in unveiling the 10,000-page document, which is a key step in returning professional football to Los Angeles for the first time since 1994. Leiweke said he hopes the stadium will be ready in time for the 2017 season and added that if an NFL team arrives before the stadium is ready, it can use temporary venues such as the Rose Bowl in Pasadena or the Los Angeles Coliseum.

The report, which took two years to complete, is a milestone on the way to luring back a team to Los Angeles, which lost both the Raiders and Rams in 1994. After a 45-day public comment period, the report goes to the City Council. It also could face legal challenges but Leiweke praised the completion the $27 million report, which he called ``the world's most expensive piece of paper.''

``In terms of football, we are now in the offensive zone, not the defensive zone,'' Leiweke said at the news conference where he was surrounded by helmeted construction workers, janitors and other union laborers who back the stadium.

The report estimates the stadium could provide 11,000 permanent new jobs in addition to thousands of construction jobs, and generate $1.7 billion for the local economy. However, some analysts have argued that the benefits are overstated.

Traffic is a crucial concern. The report itself says the stadium will have ``unavoidable significant impacts,'' including nearly 20,000 additional car trips downtown on weekends.

Leiweke said he was confident that the mitigation plans could deal with the upsurge and even the crush from a Super Bowl, noting that 365,000 people currently travel in and out of downtown every day.

``We can do that on a Sunday for 68,000 people,'' he said. ``We can do this. We just have to teach people and reward them for using mass transportation.''

One idea would be to give mass transit users first crack at tickets, he said.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa issued a statement of support for the project - and especially for returning pro football to the city.

``As the development of Farmer's Field moves forward, Los Angeles is closer to bringing an NFL team here than any time since the Raiders and Rams left,'' Villaraigosa said. ``I'm working hard to bring a team to LA, and a world-class stadium is an important part of that effort.''

But some critics were skeptical. Kevin James, who is running for mayor next year, said football's tailgate party culture is hard to change. He said the percentage of fans who take public transportation to games in other cities has been low.

``You can't put your barbecue on the subway,'' he said.

The environmental review could be approved by late this year or the first quarter of 2013, Leiweke said. With a political plan and $1 billion in private funding in place, Leiweke said, ``we'll be able to look the NFL in the eye and tell them there is no more excuse, there is no more reason, there is no more delay, and there should be no more negotiation on why we cannot bring football back to Los Angeles.''

A rival group, Majestic Realty, has proposed building a stadium in the City of Industry, outside Los Angeles.

Farmer's Field got help from the state in September with the passage of a law that will help it quickly resolve legal challenges to the project by sending lawsuits over its environmental impact directly to the California Court of Appeal and bypassing the Superior Court. The appeals court would have to make a ruling within 175 days.

In return, AEG pledged to build a ``green stadium'' and make it public-transit friendly.

Earlier in the week, Leiweke addressed reports that the company and the NFL were at odds over team ownership and stadium revenue, saying developer Philip Anschutz is willing to buy a team himself in order to make the deal work.

Leiweke told the Los Angeles Times that Anschutz is ready to write a check for both the downtown stadium and a team as long as he can get a ``reasonable'' deal out of the football league.

Reports, including one from Yahoo sports, said the NFL was unhappy with Anschutz's proposal that he own just a small part of the team but collect stadium revenues usually reserved for owners.

Leiweke has said he has spoken with several teams about moving to Los Angeles, but declined to specify which ones. He said he plans to follow the guidance of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell about which teams would be candidates.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Sean LeeOct 5 06:42p

Dallas Cowboys LB Sean Lee (concussion) is feeling better but will have to pass all of his concussion tests before he is cleared to play again, according to head coach Jason Garrett.

Lance DunbarOct 5 06:42p

Dallas Cowboys RB Lance Dunbar (knee) will miss the rest of the 2015 season because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament he suffered in Week 4. He scheduled [ More ]

Ronnie BrownOct 5 05:32p

Free-agent RB Ronnie Brown (Chargers) re-signed with the San Diego Chargers Monday, Oct. 5, according to a source. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Andrew LuckOct 5 05:12p

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) is expected to play in the Week 5 game against the Houston Texans Thursday, Oct. 8. Luck has a slightly separated throwing shoulder [ More ]

Sammy WatkinsOct 5 04:42p

Buffalo Bills WR Sammy Watkins' (calf) status for the Week 5 game against the Tennessee Titans is uncertain at this point, according to head coach Rex Ryan. 'He looked [ More ]

Jordan ReedOct 5 04:42p

Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed's (concussion, knee, ankle) head injury is a real concern, according to head coach Jay Gruden. Reed has a long history of head injuries dating [ More ]

Daniel FellsOct 5 04:42p

New York Giants TE Daniel Fells (ankle) was placed on the season-ending Reserve/Injured list Monday, Oct. 5, due to a staph infection in his ankle. TE Will Tye was [ More ]

Antonio GatesOct 5 04:22p

San Diego Chargers TE Antonio Gates is in great shape and will be play in the Week 5 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, according to head coach Mike McCoy.

Ryan MallettOct 5 02:42p

Houston Texans QB Ryan Mallett will be the starting quarterback for the Week 5 game against the Indianapolis Colts Thursday, Oct. 8, according to head coach Bill O'Brien.

Christine MichaelOct 5 02:42p

Dallas Cowboys RB Christine Michael will have a role in the offense, according to executive vice president Stephen Jones, with RB Lance Dunbar (knee) possibly out for the rest [ More ]

Dez BryantOct 5 02:32p

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant (foot) could return after the Cowboys' Week 6 bye, according to executive vice president Stephen Jones. Bryant recently had a positive examination of the [ More ]

Cecil Shorts IIIOct 5 02:12p

Houston Texans WR Cecil Shorts (shoulder) is considered doubtful for the Week 5 game against the Indianapolis Colts because of the dislocated shoulder he suffered in Week 4.

Alec OgletreeOct 5 02:12p

St. Louis Rams LB Alec Ogletree (ankle) will need surgery on his ankle, according to head coach Jeff Fisher. Ogletree is a candidate to be placed on the short-term Reserve/Injured list.

Dan CampbellOct 5 01:52p

Miami Dolphins tight ends coach Dan Campbell was named the team's interim head coach Monday, Oct. 5.

Julius ThomasOct 5 01:52p

Jacksonville Jaguars TE Julius Thomas (hand) is scheduled to meet with a doctor Monday, Oct. 5, and may be cleared for full practice after the meeting. His status for [ More ]

Caleb SturgisOct 5 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles PK Caleb Sturgis will remain the team's kicker for the time being, according to head coach Chip Kelly.

Will MontgomeryOct 5 01:22p

Chicago Bears C Will Montgomery (leg) will miss the remainder of the 2015 season after he suffered a fractured tibia during the team's Week 4 game. He will need [ More ]

Josh JohnsonOct 5 01:22p

Indianapolis Colts QB Josh Johnson was released Monday, Oct. 5.

Colin KaepernickOct 5 01:02p

San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick was 13-for-25 for just 160 yards and an interception in the Week 4 loss to the Green Bay Packers. He also ran for 57 yards on 10 carries.

Kyle BrindzaOct 5 12:42p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers PK Kyle Brindza was released Monday, Oct. 5, after missing seven kicks in the last two weeks.

Joe PhilbinOct 5 11:52a

Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin was fired Monday, Oct. 5, according to Sun-Sentinel.

Willie SneadOct 5 11:02a

New Orleans Saints WR Willie Snead played 48 snaps (66% of the offense) Sunday, Oct. 4, in Week 4, while WR Brandon Coleman played just 19 for 26% of the offense.

Andrew LuckOct 5 10:12a

Updating an earlier report, Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) is expected by the team to be under center Thursday, Oct. 8, against the Houston Texans. His shoulder injury [ More ]

Daniel FellsOct 5 09:52a

New York Giants TE Daniel Fells (foot) had an unexpected foot surgery and is likely headed to Injured Reserve, according to sources.

Jordan ReedOct 5 09:42a

Updating a previous report, Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed (concussion) was diagnosed with a concussion Sunday, Oct. 4.

Andrew LuckOct 5 08:52a

Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) has a short week to prepare for Week 5, but he's trending toward being ready Thursday, Oct. 8, against the Houston Texans. 'He [ More ]

DeMarco MurrayOct 5 08:42a

Philadelphia Eagles RB DeMarco Murray said he's not getting enough touches in the offense Sunday, Oct. 4. 'No, I'm not,' Murray said. 'I don't think I am. It's how [ More ]

C.J. SpillerOct 5 01:42a

New Orleans Saints RB C.J. Spiller carried just twice for 10 yards in the Week 4 game against the Dallas Cowboys, but he had an 80-yard touchdown catch and [ More ]

Willie SneadOct 5 01:42a

New Orleans Saints WR Willie Snead posted six receptions for 89 yards in the Week 4 game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Mark IngramOct 5 01:42a

New Orleans Saints RB Mark Ingram carried 17 times for 77 yards in the Week 4 game against the Dallas Cowboys. He also added six receptions for 51 yards [ More ]

Drew BreesOct 5 01:42a

New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees (shoulder) completed 33 of his 41 pass attempts for 359 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. His 80-yard touchdown pass to RB C.J. [ More ]

Brandon WeedenOct 5 01:12a

Dallas Cowboys QB Brandon Weeden completed 16 of his 26 pass attempts for 246 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions in the Week 4 overtime loss against the New [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
Player Notes:
Forum Posts:

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group