Will the Commanders Stadium Stay in Prince George’s?

It’s hard to imagine that the Dan Snyder ownership era is finally over.  Since almost the moment Snyder purchased that Washington Redskins in 1999, there has been little to cheer for. But at long last, this fan base, which has endured more “bad news stories” off the field than “good news” stories on it, finally has something to cheer for. With news breaking that the ownership team led by Josh Harris, and notably Magic Johnson, will soon own the Commanders. From what the Philadelphia press reports, Harris is willing to spend what it takes to win on the field (or court of ice- he owns the 76ers & New Jersey Devils too) and is well liked by players and staff alike.  Harris has also earned a reputation for being generous philanthropically and committed to the community while leaving the sports related decisions to the experts.

Putting aside football related questions (Is Sam Howell actually a QB1? Is Chase Young going to ball out for a big contract?), lets focus on the most interesting off the field story that the new ownership group is going to have to tackle…where to build a new stadium. 

  • Redeveloped FedEx Site: While no one associates FedEx Field with the team’s glorious history, the team owns the land (approximately 250 acres) and that counts for a lot from a financial standpoint.  Plus, what better way to turn the page and start anew then with a new owner and the dedication and fire power to make a true mixed-use project in the heart of the Prince George’s County.  Plus, the political will, with the county and state, will be there to make something happen.
  • RFK Site: The “spiritual home” of the franchise, RFK makes a lot of sense by most fan standards but there are large obstacles that remain. Typically, the term ‘an act of Congress’ is meant to imply the something will be very difficult to achieve. But in the case of building a stadium on the RFK site, it would take an act of Congress. In addition, the neighborhood around the RFK site is constrained, not allowing for any larger mixed-use project and now has new communities and new neighbors who might not like a noisy stadium as a neighbor. One “plus” for the RFK site, is the DC government has A LOT of money to play with and would love to see the team back in Washington if they could ever get on the same page. Last Week, a Commanders spokesperson was quoted saying that they are supporting the efforts for the District to gain control of the site in a statement released by the Associated Press via NBC Washington. But that doesn’t guarantee that it will land in DC.
  • Virginia: Virginia came close to putting together a big package together for the Commanders stadium in 2022 but pulled back because of Snyder’s inability to win enough supporters.  With Snyder gone, Virginia will likely revisit an incentive package to build a stadium in the Old Dominion.  The Commonwealth also has a governor who has signaled his support for a stadium deal, the team’s current headquarters, and a large percentage of season ticket holders. Virginia has identified several possible stadium sites, but some are far from the DC and Maryland, and if you have driven on I-95 anytime not between 1-4am, you know what that trip would look like.
  • Short Term Renovation of FedEx & Concentrate on Winning Games:  Josh Harris and his partners just spent A LOT of their money buying an NFL Franchise. Is it possible that Harris “punts” on building a new stadium for, say 10 years, while he builds up a better product on the field and wins over the fanbase?


Previous Article

EMILY’s List endorses Angela Alsobrooks in crowded Maryland Senate primary

Next Article

As the COVID public health emergency ends, prepping for a new pandemic is next

You might be interested in …

Greenbelt’s Zion Church Hosts Homeownership Forum

WASHINGTON INFORMER: With the goal of equipping first-time home buyers for the road ahead, Greenbelt’s Zion Church hosted a free homeownership forum on July 22, in tandem with guest speakers from several financial and real estate organizations. […]

25 Years of Maryland Day

Join the University of Maryland as we celebrate 25 years of Maryland Day! Bring family and friends to our signature campus event dedicated to learning, discovery and new ideas. To learn more about all of […]