Venue News: NFL Stadiums Make Lockout Plans

Tampa, FL, City Council members approved a plan this week that would prevent higher surcharges on tickets, concessions, and parking at Raymond James Stadium if a proposed NFL lockout disrupts the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ upcoming season. Under the plan, the Bucs would cover a nearly $1 million revenue shortfall to avoid the price increases. The Hillsborough County Commission approved a similar plan this week. The Tampa Bay Sports Authority, which operates the stadium, would reimburse the Bucs if revenue from future ticket surcharges exceeds $1.93 million, according to the agreement unanimously approved by the City Council…

…Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf is optimistic the NFL lockout won’t hamper the team’s push for a new stadium, the Star Tribune reported this week. Wilf spoke publicly Monday for the first time since Jan. 3, when the club promoted Leslie Frazier from interim coach. “We’re working very hard with everybody [at the Capitol] in Minnesota to get the stadium thing worked through,” he said. “We realize that it’s an important asset to the community and that it’s to everyone’s interest to [make] sure that we get a stadium that would serve not just football but all the other events the Metrodome served proudly for the last 30 years. We’re working hard to get that done, and I’m optimistic that it will get done”…

…The Santa Clara, CA, City Council called a special meeting this week and voted to spend millions of dollars on a new stadium for the San Francisco 49ers before the state government can take the money away. City Council members essentially told the state “hands off” with their 5-2 vote. The vote on the stadium funds was the one and only item on the agenda. They voted to spend $4 million in redevelopment funds, money which Governor Brown wants to use to help with the estimated $26 billion budget deficit…

…Opponents of a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings say polls show broad opposition among Minnesotans to building stadiums with tax dollars. A proposed new stadium would cost $700 million-$900 million, depending on whether it has a roof. Under a funding proposal, the Vikings would pay one-third of the cost, and the rest would come from the state and a local government partner, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported Monday. Opponents say they would prefer to see the existing debt-free Metrodome renovated.