UPDATE 11:29 a.m.: In what's being touted as a "major milestone," the city of Los Angeles and Anschutz Entertainment Group signed an "implementation agreement" Wednesday for the construction of an NFL stadium downtown.
During a ceremony in front of the L.A. Convention Center, officials talked about what they see as some of the project's benefits: The construction of a 76,000-seat stadium, upgrading Gilbert Lindsay Plaza and modernizing the 50-year old convention center.
The group Play Fair at Farmers Field Coalition has sued the State of California over a law that allowed AEG to expedite environmental concerns related to the stadium. A hearing date for the lawsuit has not been set.
In a statement, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said: “We are a giant step closer to bringing NFL football back to Los Angeles. But this project means more than a potential NFL stadium. It also means a modernized convention center and thousands of new jobs for LA.”
PREVIOUSLY: The President of Anschutz Entertainment Group, Tim Leiweke, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and City Councilwoman Jan Perry have scheduled a Wednesday meeting to sign an "implementation agreement" for the construction of an NFL stadium in downtown Los Angeles.
The L.A. City Council unanimously approved plans to build the Farmers Field football stadium last week.
The implementation agreement inks the commitment from Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) which is financing the $1.5 billion project.
AEG is up for sale, but Mayor Villaraigosa has said that any buyer must agree to the terms negotiated for the new stadium.
Those terms include tearing down the West Hall of the L.A. Convention Center and replacing it with a new wing.
The original cost was estimated at $280 million, but city officials recently learned that it has risen to about $315 million.
But the convention center work will not happen unless an NFL team agrees to locate in L.A.