NV begins planning highway upgrades in anticipation of new Raiders stadium
- The Nevada Department of Transportation is forging ahead with highway improvements around a near-$2 billion proposed Raiders stadium even though the project is not yet a done deal, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
- An October report produced by Gov. Brian Sandoval's office said the bill for all the necessary upgrades around the NFL stadium site — such as the reorganization of highway interchanges, direct access ramps and carpool lanes — would total almost $900 million.
- The winning contractor for the interchange portion of the improvements could be announced as early as May.
The NDOT is proceeding with its plans even though financing for the stadium project took a hit at the end of last month when billionaire Sheldon Adelson, long-time stadium champion and $650-million investor, backed out of his financial commitment. The Raiders said it would make up the difference. Adelson's move was reportedly due to a disagreement about not being part of the lease deal for the stadium, not because of project viability issues. However, the move has still caused a wave of doubt among other investors.
The Raiders' initial proposal would see the Las Vegas Stadium Authority own the stadium, which the team would then lease from the authority for $1 a year. The authority's ownership position is in exchange for $750 million in financing via Clark County's hotel tax. The team said the pitch was just a first step in negotiations.
It's been a long road for the Raiders, who a year ago requested permission from NFL owners to relocate to Los Angeles. They were denied on that front, but the organization soon teamed up with Adelson and began pushing for a stadium in Las Vegas. The NFL owners are expected to vote on the move soon. Even so, Oakland is still lobbying the team's ownership to stay put.
In addition to the NDOT accommodations for the Raiders, the agency is also moving forward with improvements around the Faraday Future plant in North Las Vegas. However, Sandoval has called that need into question after the electric car maker shut down construction on its $1 billion plant in November. AECOM, which won a $500 million contract to build the facility, said at the time that remained committed to the project.
- Las Vegas Review-Journal NDOT pushes ahead on freeway projects near proposed Raiders stadium
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