As they consider their future facility options, the Washington Redskins are said to be seeking a downtown type of experience surrounding the venue.
Washington is exploring its options for a future facility, as its lease at FedEx Field runs through the 2027 season. Since its opening in 1997, a frequent knock against the Prince Georges County, Maryland-based venue is the lack of development surrounding it, leaving event attendees with little in the way of amenities in the nearby area.
It appears that the Redskins would like for this to change down the road. According to Prince Georges County executive Rushern Baker, the team has expressed its desire for an atmosphere that is the exact opposite of the area around FedEx Field and instead wants to see a downtown-type setting surrounding their stadium. Baker added that he believes that his county can offer that opportunity at a few locations, including the current FedEx Field site and at National Harbor. More from The Washington Post:
“When we talk to the Redskins organization, what they said to us is they want amenities for the fans to come there; they want a downtown experience,” Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III told 106.7 The Fan on Thursday morning.
Baker, who is running for governor in Maryland, said he has pitched the Redskins on both a new stadium in their current location, and an oft-discussed move to National Harbor.
“If you look what we’ve done in the county and downtown Largo, which will be redeveloped, they’re actually going to be in a downtown area” in the current location, Baker said. “It won’t be just a stadium by itself. Once we put the hospital there, redevelopment of The Boulevard, it’s going to give it a downtown feel, as if you were in D.C. The other thing, if they’re looking for areas, we’ve got areas that I think are entertainment areas. I told them that area they’re in is going to be great, but also if you look at National Harbor and that area — which is an entertainment district already — you’ve got everything there. Just think about it, you’ve got [the new MGM casino], you’ve got National Harbor Gaylord, Tanger Outlets, and it’s right next to D.C., Virginia [and] Maryland.”
As Baker points out, development at National Harbor–which is located near the Woodrow Wilson Bridge–has been taking shape over the last several years. The MGM National Harbor, one of its major amenities, just opened this past December.
Maryland and Princes Georges County might not be the only options for the Redskins. Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe has openly expressed interest in bringing the team to the state, with Loudoun County mentioned for a possible stadium site. There is also still plenty of sentiment for seeing the club construct a new facility at the site of RFK Stadium.
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