By a margin of 31-1, NFL team owners have granted conditional approval for the Oakland Raiders to relocate to Las Vegas.
After spending considerable time lobbying for a new stadium in the city, the Raiders submitted their proposal to relocate in January. Owner Mark Davis had been eyeing a move to Las Vegas, where $750 million toward the construction of a new stadium was authorized by the State of Nevada last fall. That will be a key piece of the funding puzzle for stadium’s development, which also has the backing of the Raiders and Bank of America.
With that plan in place, NFL owners signed off on the team’s relocation Bid. ESPN has reported that Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross provided the lone dissenting vote.
The Oakland Raiders have received conditional approval from the National Football League to relocate the franchise to Las Vegas, Nevada.
“My father always said, ‘the greatness of the Raiders is in its future,’ and the opportunity to build a world-class stadium in the entertainment capital of the world is a significant step toward achieving that greatness. I would like to thank Commissioner Goodell, the National Football League and my 31 partners. I would also like to thank Governor Brian Sandoval and the Nevada Legislature for their commitment. Finally, I would like to thank Sheldon Adelson for his vision and leadership, without which this project never would have become a reality.
“The Raiders were born in Oakland and Oakland will always be part of our DNA. We know that some fans will be disappointed and even angry, but we hope that they do not direct that frustration to the players, coaches and staff. We plan to play at the Coliseum in 2017 and 2018, and hope to stay there as the Oakland Raiders until the new stadium opens. We would love nothing more than to bring a championship back to the Bay Area.”
The Raiders are the latest in a flurry of moves to be announced within the NFL since the beginning of last year. In January 2016, the St. Louis Rams announced their intent to relocate to Los Angeles, while the San Diego Chargers exercised their option to move to LA in January–a decision that will allow them to eventually join the Rams at a new stadium in Inlgewood that is slated to open in 2019.
Plans for the new Raiders stadium in Las Vegas call for the facility to open in 2020. It will seat 65,000, and host both the Raiders and UNLV football, along with other events.