OAKLAND (CBS SF) — The possibility of building a new football stadium for the Oakland Raiders adjacent to the current O.co Coliseum remains alive after the last-minute addition of financial adviser Floyd Kephart to a group of investors who want to develop the site.
A planning team has been trying for two years to get Oakland’s Coliseum City project off the ground.
Plans call for at least one new sports stadium at the Coliseum complex plus housing, retail stores, hotels and housing.
The planning team’s exclusive negotiating agreement with the city Oakland was set to expire on Tuesday but the City Council voted on Tuesday to grant the group a 90-day extension after it added Kephart, the chairman of the board of Renaissance Companies, a San Diego firm that advises hedge funds, private equity groups and financial institutions.
The group hopes to name a developer for the site within 60 days, according to City Councilman Larry Reid, who represents the East Oakland area where the Coliseum is located and previously was skeptical that the planning group could follow through on its development plans.
“The team previously didn’t have the capacity to do this but Mr. Kephart and his team have the wherewithal to move this forward,” Reid said Wednesday.
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan said in a statement that the addition of Kephart and the 90-day extension is “an important step forward in the work we kicked off three years ago, when my administration began the process of developing the master plan and environmental impact report for Coliseum City.”
Quan said, “I am grateful to the Raiders for their continued commitment to Oakland and I expect the negotiating team to reach out to the Oakland A’s and Golden State Warriors as well.”
The city envisions up to three new sports venues at the site: a new football stadium for the Raiders, a new baseball park for the A’s and a new arena for Warriors basketball games and other events. But so far only the Raiders have expressed interest in participating in the Coliseum City project, although A’s owner Lew Wolff has said he might be interested in a development project at the site if he could control it.
Reid said Kephart “will reach out to the A’s” to try to get them involved in the proposed Coliseum City project.
Reid also said there’s room for the Warriors at the site if their plans to move to San Francisco don’t materialize.
The lone City Council member to vote against the 90-day extension was Rebecca Kaplan, who is running against Quan in the mayoral election on Nov. 4.
Kaplan said Wednesday that she voted against the extension because the city still hasn’t been given the terms of the proposed deal, financing details or the name of a developer, all of which were supposed to have been completed by now.
“A plan hasn’t yet been submitted and the deadline passed many months ago,” Kaplan said.
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