Venue News: St. Louis Rams Owner Plans to Build Stadium in L.A.; 2018 PyeongChang Olympics Announce Venue Names

The owner of the St. Louis Rams plans to build an NFL stadium in Inglewood, which could pave the way for the league’s return to Los Angeles, according to the Los Angeles Times. Rams owner Stan Kroenke, who bought 60 acres adjacent to the Forum a year ago, has joined forces with the owners of the 238-acre Hollywood Park site, Stockbridge Capital Group. They plan to add an 80,000-seat NFL stadium and 6,000-seat performance venue to the already-massive development of retail, office, hotel, and residential space…

…Organizers of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics on Friday announced the names of the venues for the quadrennial competition, writes The Korea Herald. The organizing committee for the Olympics said it has consulted with the province of Gangwon and national federations of each sport since March last year, and the names were finalized after discussions with the International Olympic Committee.  PyeongChang will be the first South Korean host of the Winter Olympics…

…Twenty-four years after the NHL awarded Ottawa the franchise that should have gone to Hamilton – where they had the money, but asked to pay in installments – the Ottawa Senators have set records for futility, declared bankruptcy, changed ownership three times, gone to the Stanley Cup Final and, this month, have been looking at moving to where they should have been in the first place. Not Hamilton – but downtown Ottawa. According to The Globe and Mail, the leaked story that the Senators are sniffing around one of the oldest parts of Bytown, LeBreton Flats, has sent shockwaves through the nation’s capital. The west end is worried it is losing a franchise; downtown thinks it is getting one.

…The owners of the Milwaukee Bucks are hitting the ground running in 2015 with their new-arena planning process expected to yield news on the site by the end of January, according to the Milwaukee Business Journal. Announcing their preferred site — the owners say they continue weighing two or three possibilities in downtown Milwaukee — will set in motion a series of events that they hope will result in breaking ground on the project by the end of the year…

…Last week, the city council for the nation’s capital gave final approval to a financing plan for the city’s Major League Soccer franchise, D.C. United, to build a new stadium, writes Think Progress. Under terms of the deal, the city will borrow $106 million and re-purpose $32 million of existing budget funds to acquire land for the stadium, while D.C. United will pay for the actual construction. It’s not the worst deal in the world (that’s a high bar in the stadium finance world, so it isn’t exactly a point in D.C.’s favor), but even though completion of the stadium deal was greeted with a sigh of relief from council members, the outgoing and incoming mayors, and fans of the team, there are still major questions — and potential problems — about the deal that went unanswered before approval is granted…

…The University of Akron is considering plans to renovate the on-campus arena used by its basketball teams rather than waiting to see whether the community builds a downtown facility to host games and events, writes the Associated Press. The basketball and volleyball teams currently play in James A. Rhodes Arena, which opened in 1983. Local leaders discussed using part of a proposed sales tax increase to fund a new downtown facility, but that was pulled from a ballot proposal later rejected by voters.