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L.A. gives AEG more time to find a team for a downtown NFL stadium

Shown is an artist's rendering of the proposed NFL stadium, called Farmer's Field in Los Angeles, provided by Anschutz Entertainment Group. AEG received a six-month extension for its agreement with Los Angeles to build a professional football stadium next to the L.A. Convention Center.
(Associated Press)

The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday granted developer Anschutz Entertainment Group another six months to find a team for its proposed downtown NFL stadium, while also giving it more influence over any backup plan for the site.

On a 12-0 vote, the council agreed to make AEG a participant in what city officials have been calling Plan B -- the effort to figure out how to upgrade the Los Angeles Convention Center if no stadium is built.

AEG struck a deal with the city in 2012 to construct a stadium next to the convention center. As part of that plan, a new wing of the convention center would be built using stadium revenue and other funds. However, the two-year agreement hinged on AEG first getting an NFL team.

Council members did not discuss the extension during Tuesday’s meeting. As part of the agreement, AEG will provide $750,000 for design work on a convention center modernization that would not include a stadium.

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AEG did not make any remarks to the council. But in an appearance before lawmakers last week, AEG’s chief legal and development officer, Ted Fikre, said his company had been engaged in a “renewed dialogue” with the league on securing a team.

“That was encouraging enough to us that we felt it was worth taking some more time to continue the effort,” he said.

Los Angeles has not had an NFL franchise since the Raiders and Rams left after the 1994 season. If AEG manages to land a team by mid-April, it would then receive another six months -- or until Oct. 16, 2015 -- to finalize all the agreements with the league and the city.

AEG already has a contract with the city to run the convention center.

Follow @DavidZahniser on Twitter for what’s happening at Los Angeles City Hall.


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