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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Cleveland Mayor Wants Browns to Develop Stadium, Lakefront

  • Cleveland's mayor wants to make a deal with the Browns at the right ROI.
  • The team could renovate its stadium or build a new one.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland mayor Justin Bibb wants any new or renovated Browns stadium to be a community asset.

“It’s going to be important that we, as a community, find a way to not just think about the stadium, but the lakefront as an asset for the entire region,” Bibb told a Cleveland TV station on Monday.

  • The Browns’ lease at FirstEnergy Stadium expires in 2028.
  • The team hasn’t committed to building a new stadium or renovating their existing one, but seems to be exploring both options.
  • Bibb noted that “prior deals haven’t had the right ROI for the residents of Cleveland.”

Bibb didn’t explicitly state that the city would put up public funds, but added, “We need to look at all options.”

As for adding a dome, the mayor said, “We shall see. It’s a big price tag.”

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Stay or Go?

A report from June said that the Browns wanted a new, publicly funded $1 billion domed stadium and had two sites picked out. Owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam reportedly feel like FirstEnergy stadium is aging poorly.

The Browns denied the report, saying their focus is on renovating their current home.

That same month, the Cleveland city council passed a nonbinding resolution stating that the team should remove the FirstEnergy name following a bribery scandal. The energy company’s $107 million naming rights deal runs through 2030.

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