Sad that we no longer have the crazy Seattle-Sacramento bidding war over the Kings to provide us with daily entertainment? Fear not, for there’s still the utter insanity that is Las Vegas and its umpteen stadium plans for teams that may or may not ever exist. Or rather, make that umpteen plus one:
Just two months after UNLV dumped Majestic Realty as a partner in a new stadium, Majestic is pushing an alternative that would bypass the university and instead partner with the state itself.
Craig Cavileer, Majestic’s point-man on the project, said his company will commit $385 million toward the $770 million project. In recent weeks he has been quietly lobbying lawmakers and Gov. Brian Sandoval, seeking support for a $1.50 per trip taxi fee in the Las Vegas area that would pay the state’s half of construction costs.
This article is accompanied by renderings of the proposed Majestic stadium, which seems to include the superstructure for a retractable roof of some kind, though given that it’s not even clear where the drawings came from, it’s probably best not to take them too seriously at the moment.
The Las Vegas Sun raves that the Majestic plan would be cheaper than UNLV’s plan ($770 million vs. $800-900 million), simpler (because all the money would come from Majestic and the state of Nevada, as opposed to UNLV, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and local casinos), and “fair” (because Majestic and the state would evenly split costs and profits, though it’s not entirely clear how “profits” would be determined). On the down side, state assembly leaders hate the idea, with majority leader William Horne saying that “trying to float such an endeavor at this late hour with a $1.50 cab ride fee in there has almost zero chance of happening” and calling the Majestic plan “sour grapes because they are not part of the project anymore.” Plus UNLV doesn’t want to do it.
Still, total lack of support has never been a reason for Vegas to back off of stadium plans before, so why start now? At least now we can all look forward to months and months of posturing by the two competing stadium proposals, if we’re lucky. Because when you’re talking about spending almost a billion dollars on a college football stadium, really the most important question is “Which developer should we provide with state money to help build it?”