Opening of $2.6B Rams, Chargers stadium delayed to 2020

Dive Brief:

  • Record rainfall in the Los Angeles area will push back the opening of the Rams' and Chargers' new $2.6 billion NFL stadium in Inglewood, CA, to 2020, according to the Los Angeles Times.
  • Team officials hoped to have the new venue ready in time for the 2019-2020 season but lost two months of the schedule during excavation work when rain brought 12 to 15 feet of standing water to the hole, holding up work until it was drained. The Turner–AECOM Hunt joint venture cannot make up the lost time, as the already-tight schedule was designed to accommodate a maximum of 30 rain days.
  • Super Bowl LV is scheduled to be played at the new facility in February 2021, but officials must now seek a waiver from NFL owners to get around the league rule that a stadium cannot host the event in its first season of operation.

Dive Insight:  

In January 2016, both the Rams and Chargers won approval from the NFL to relocate to the new Los Angeles-area stadium. The Chargers attempted to win voter approval for a new stadium and conference center in their previous home of San Diego, but the tax measure that would have supported the project was rejected by voters last November.

The Inglewood stadium was designed by HKS — the same architecture firm for the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis — and it will be part of the nearly 300-acre mixed-use development called the L.A. Stadium and Entertainment District. The project will feature more than 1 million square feet of retail, 2,500 residential units, a hotel, 25 acres of open space and a 6,000-seat concert venue. 

The team also had to wait out a Federal Aviation Administration review of the project while the agency determined if the stadium's height would interfere with Los Angeles International Airport's radar functionality. The FAA approved the design in January on the condition that the Rams pay $29 million for a supplementary radar system to ensure safe air traffic.

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Top image credit: Los Angeles Rams/HKS