The Titans are finalizing the last piece of the NFL’s next expensive stadium

The Titans are finalizing the last piece of the NFL's next expensive stadium

Nashville, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans have the final financing piece for the NFL’s next most expensive stadium with the largest public investment yet, which they hope to open for the 2027 season.

The Metro Nashville City Council approved by a 26-12 vote early Wednesday morning to authorize its sports authority to issue $760 million in bonds. That joins $500 million in state bonds for $1.2 billion in public financing committed to the Titans’ shuttered stadium.

That’s on top of New York’s $850 million commitment to Buffalo’s new $1.5 billion stadium, giving Tennessee the largest public bid for a stadium.

The total cost of the stadium is estimated at $2.1 billion. The Titans, with help from the NFL and individual seat licenses, will provide the remaining $840 million. Controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk thanked everyone involved as the Titans begin a new chapter.

“For more than 25 years, Nashville, Tennessee, has been the home of the Titans, and with the approval of the new stadium agreement, we are grateful to know that the Titans will be a part of this great city and state for decades to come,” Strunk said in a statement.

Council meetings began Tuesday night for taxpayers to argue for and against a proposal to use Nashville’s bonding authority to pay for a second stadium for a privately owned NFL team. It took the council about six hours before the final vote.

The new stadium will have a translucent roof with a capacity of approximately 60,000.

The stadium will allow Nashville and the Titans to bid for the Super Bowl, Final Four, College Football Playoff games and more. Titans President and CEO Burke Nihil said they are excited about the opportunity to host some of the best events in the world.

“This is a generational opportunity to address our city’s priorities and ensure its health and vitality for the next 30 years,” Nihil said. “Our city and our state have a bright future ahead of them, and we are humbled by the opportunity to continue to be a part of it.”

The deal shifts an estimated $1.8 billion in costs for future maintenance and investment of the stadium through 2039 from Nashville taxpayers to NFL franchises, who will also be on the hook for budget and maintenance overruns, rather than local taxpayers.

In the deal, the Titans agreed to forgive $32 million owed by Nashville for money spent on maintenance of Nissan Stadium over the past four years. The Titans will also pay the remaining $30 million in bond payments for the current stadium.

A new 1% hotel/motel tax would pay off all in-stadium sales tax and 50% of the sales tax bond from the 130 acres surrounding the stadium. The Titans and city officials announced an agreement in October that includes a new 30-year lease. The team also agreed not to leave Nashville during that lease.

Nashville hired an independent consulting firm that confirmed the Titans’ estimate of what the city would pay to maintain the stadium under a lease signed in 1996. Venue Solutions Group agreed that renovating the current stadium would cost between $1.75 billion and $1.95 billion over the remaining years. on lease.

The Titans are clearing the money for their portion of the stadium, and team officials hope to open by mid-2024 for the 2027 season. Strunk has already paid for an expansion of the team’s headquarters that essentially doubles the size of the building that opened in August 1999.

Nissan Stadium originally opened in 1999 as the Adelphia Coliseum. The deal cost $292 million to convince franchise founder Bud Adams, who died in 2013, to move his Oilers from Houston to Tennessee in 1997.

The Titans originally planned to renovate that stadium until a study doubled the original estimated cost from $600 million to $1.2 billion.

The new stadium will be built on a parking lot between the current stadium and Interstate 24. The deal would return control of 66 acres, including the current site of Nissan Stadium, to Nashville. City officials are planning a renovation that will feature parks, greenways, affordable housing and a new road.

Nashville has already hosted the 2019 NFL Draft, drawing an estimated 600,000 people over three days.

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