Stadium Authority Chairman Steve Hill chats with the media after a recent stadium board meeting. He said the stadium contractors meeting locals this week is an example of the Raiders "engaging" the community.

UNLV Needs Time to Determine Game-day Rent at New Raiders Stadium in LV

By ALAN SNEL

UNLV will spend the next two months
figuring out how much it will cost to stage football games at the Raiders’ new domed stadium before a joint-use agreement can be hammered out between the university and the NFL team.

UNLV spends about $75,000 to $80,000 on game day to put on football games at Sam Boyd Stadium, said Mike Newcomb, executive director of Sam Boyd and the Thomas & Mack Center.

One thing is for sure when UNLV’s football team moves into the Raiders stadium in 2020 — it will cost UNLV more to put on a football game at the palatial domed $1.9 billion venue at the 62-acre site off I-15 at Russell Road and Polaris Avenue than at Sam Boyd. The public is contributing $750 million toward building the stadium.

The update on the UNLV-Raiders agreement was discussed at the Stadium Authority meeting held today at the county government center. It was a short one-hour session.

UNLV will keep its football game-day revenues generated from home games held at the Raiders stadium while the playing surface for UNLV football games — grass or artificial — still has to be determined, Newcomb said.

In effect, the Raiders stadium will turn into a UNLV football venue on game day so that UNLV sponsors can have their signage and digital messages. That’s common in cities that has an NFL stadium also renting out the venue for local college teams. A good example is Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, where the Tampa Bay Bucs home is also rented out to the University of South Florida Bulls.

Newcomb, also one of the stadium board members, said UNLV could pay rent to the Raiders based on a sliding scale of game-day attendance. For example, game-day rent for UNLV football games could go up if the university draws more fans at the games. And UNLV would pay less for smaller crowds.

UNLV owns Sam Boyd Stadium, which is about seven miles from the UNLV campus and home to the football team.

The Raiders have to sign off on the UNLV deal because the NFL team will run the 65,000-seat stadium. No Raiders representatives addressed the stadium authority today. The stadium authority owns the football venue, but the Raiders will manage it and receive all revenues from moneymakers such as the stadium naming rights, parking and food concession contracts

Clark County Commission Chairman Steve Sisolak, a Raiders fan, watches the stadium authority board today.

The Raiders also have to deal with a shortage of on-site parking at the stadium, which is scheduled to open in 2020. Clark County rules require 16,250 spaces at the stadium, but the Raiders report submitted a week ago showed only 2,400 parking spots.

Jeremy Aguero, the stadium board consultant, said the parking issue is just one part of the Raiders overall traffic study and that the county development agreement is on track with the NFL team.

Stadium board consultant Jeremy Aguero addresses the stadium authority board members during today’s board meeting.

“Yes, it’s something we’re concerned about,” Aguero said of the parking situation.

The Raiders plan to wide Polaris Avenue from 60 to 80 feet, build a 30-foot-wide pedestrian walkway from the east side of I-15 to the west side and work with shuttle services to move fans to the eight regular-season home games, according to the report.

Contact Alan Snel at asnel@LVSportsBiz.com

Alan Snel

Alan Snel brings decades of sports-business reporting experience to LVSportsBiz.com.

Snel covered the business side of sports for the South Florida (Fort Lauderdale) Sun-Sentinel, the Tampa Tribune and Las Vegas Review-Journal. As a city hall beat reporter, Snel also covered stadium deals in Denver and Seattle.

In 2000, Snel launched a sport-business website for FoxSports.com called FoxSportsBiz.com.

After reporting sports-business for the RJ, Snel wrote hard-hitting stories on the Raiders stadium for the Desert Companion magazine in Las Vegas and The Nevada Independent.

Snel is also one of the top bicycle advocates in the country.

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