Jacology: Dome Deal
(KPLR) – In Tuesday’s Jacology, Charles Jaco takes on the rams dome deal and wonders how much owner Stan Kroenke is willing to cough up to keep the team in town.
Negotiations between the Rams and the city over the dome may have been more theatre than anything else. That’s because both the Rams and the Convention and Visitors Commission would be better off financially if the Rams get out of the dome. The CVC knows it. The team knows it. But the contract required negotiations on upgrading the dome, so it was negotiations we got.
But the arbitrator’s decision at the end of those talks told us what we already knew; that the dome can’t be among the top stadiums in the NFL without tearing most of it down and doing a major re-build. That would cost around $700 or $750 million dollars and would put the dome out of commission for two, maybe three years during construction.
The CVC won’t agree to that. They make more money from conventions at the dome than they do from the Rams. If the Rams leave the dome, the CVC suddenly has an extra four months a year to use the dome for more conventions. The Rams meanwhile don’t like the dome because it’s relately small and at 18 relatively old. Unlike other NFL teams, the Rams don’t get any revenue from parking all those cars on game day.
So to both sides, this was always about getting the Rams out of the dome. Rams owner Stan Kroenke is the 358th richest person on planet earth. Forbes magazine estimates his net worth at around four billion dollars. He owns the venues where his other pro sports teams play in the U.S. and England. Chances are he’d like to own a new football stadium in which the Rams would play.
But taxpayers here won’t cough up much to help pay for it. So here’s the basic question; is Stan Kroenke willing to spend up to a billion dollars of his own money to build and own a new football stadium in St. Louis? The future of the NFL in St. Louis will be determined by the answer.
I’m Charles Jaco and that’s Jacology.