Edward Jones Dome Negotiations Handed Off to The State

Dilip Vishwanat

The St. Louis CVC has decided paying $700 million for renovations isn't going to fly, so they're passing the problem on to Missouri Governor Jay Nixon. It's hardly surprising at this point. The commission in charge of the Eward Jones Dome showed they were out of their depth when they low-balled Rams' owner Stan Kroenke earlier in the negotiations. When the Rams took them to arbitration and won, the CVC was left with little choice. Now the Rams and Jay Nixon will face off in a battle to save the Rams before the 2014 opt out year.

While some would see this as a political move by the CVC, I doubt it. Nixon was re-elected in November of 2012, so he doesn't really have any "voter heat" on him to make things happen prior to the Rams 2014 "improve the EJD or we're bugging out" date.

Still left to consider is how Stan Kroenke will approach the issue. Past rumors of the Rams heading back west to L.A. have all but died, with the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders now leading candidates to fill any stadium in the U.S.'s #2 television market. After seeing the cost of the 49ers' new stadium continuing to spiral past the $2 billion mark (including all infrastructure improvements), it's less likely Kroenke would try to build his own facility in the even more expensive - and competitive - L.A. sports market. There's still a chance Kroenke could opt for building his own stadium in the St. Louis area, which sounds - and is - a better long term business move when you consider construction costs. The Indianapolis Colts built a brand spanking new stadium for around $700 million with state and local help, plus input from the NFL's investment fund.

The problem lies in what's happened lately in other NFL markets, when it comes to new stadiums funded by taxpayers. You only have to look at the current debacle going on with the Miami Dolphins to see how involving state bureaucracies can spiral things out of control.


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