Inglewood Approves NFL Stadium Plan

The 1951 Los Angeles Rams NFL Championship was also the State of California's first major professional championship. Photo Courtesy: Andy Moursund
The 1951 Los Angeles Rams NFL Championship was also the State of California’s first major professional championship. Photo Courtesy: Andy Moursund

By Michael Hanley

Tuesday night, the Inglewood City Council voted unanimously to approve an NFL stadium project, clearing the way for a return to LA for the NFL.

The NFL stadium is part of a $2 billion plan that calls for office space retail shopping and housing for residents to move into. This is all done with having Stan Kroenke, the St. Louis Rams owner, on aboard as a partner in all of this.

Construction for this is to start later this year. Some reports have the shovel going into the ground no later than December of this year, which would put it on a timetable to have the stadium complete come the start of the 2018 season.

This would mean that if a team does relocate to Los Angeles, it will have to play its first two seasons somewhere else during the interim. That place looks like it will be the Rose Bowl, since it has just gone through a major renovation, like reinstalling tiles for the bathroom, which has made it an even more suitable stadium to handle an NFL team if that time does indeed come to pass.

This major step forward does have validity to it over other moments in the past where an NFL stadium was proposed for the city of angels and was on track until it hit a snafu of some sort that lead to its demise. This Inglewood project is much different in that the first city council approved it 5-0 in a vote and second it took the step to adopt the redevelopment plan without putting it to a public vote.

That enables this project to hit the ground running, with being able to avoid having to go through  a lengthy wait for a vote  by the citizens and also skip the timely and costly step of going through an environmental review, which can take months, even years in some cases to finish out in California.

The fact that this redevelopment plan will not cost the citizens of the city any tax dollars or new taxes is  a major plus to being able to have it be pushed through so quickly. This also helps build their lead on the competing NFL stadium plan in Carson which looks to add as much as two teams, currently the Chargers and Raiders, to its location as soon as possible.

The move taken Tuesday night has made their lead a vast one and puts more pressure on Carson officials to speed up their process and get to the point of where Inglewood is right now, which will not be easy to do.

Now a team must still commit and be willing to leave its current location for this new stadium deal to work 100%. The Rams have long been rumored to comeback to southern California and Kroenke has made moves to get them on the path toward Los Angeles.

The hurdle will be getting enough votes from the other owners in the league to approve relocation of a team such as the Rams. It is unknown how that would shape up but he now can point to having a city council approved project that is ready to construct and be one that is taxpayer free cost wise.

This by far is the best chance Los Angeles has had in 20 plus years to land a team again and if Kroenke gets his way, their will be a lot of Rams fans in California digging out their old gear again to put on for use on Sundays.