The Washington Commanders just dropped over $100 million on land in Virginia, stoking the speculation of a possible new site for the team’s next stadium.
According to a report by ESPN, the Commanders completed the deal last week, but it has yet to be filed with Prince William County, where the land is located.
The deal was said to be for around 200 acres and would be used to construct a new stadium, apartment complexes, and retail shops.
Commanders Keeping Their Options Open
While one of ESPN’s sources called the Virginia location the team’s preferred site, the Commanders are said to be leaving their options open. For instance, There’s been chatter about the team purchasing another 70 acres just 23 miles from D.C. off of I-95 in Woodbridge, Virginia.
According to the ESPN report, the team likes the layout of this land and would use it to construct a 60,000-seat domed stadium with a translucent roof that would allow it to be used year-round.
The site would also include a team practice facility, a 15,000- to 20,000-seat amphitheater, an indoor concert venue, residential living spaces, as well as high-end shopping, bars, and restaurants.
The Commanders are keeping their Maryland possibilities open as well. The state has said it would commit to $400 million to help develop the area near the current stadium in Landover.
The team would then build a domed stadium near its existing home, FedEx Field.
The Commanders would also like to return to the site of RFK Stadium in D.C., a place they called home for over three decades from 1961 to 1996. However, that option seems unlikely since the site is on federal land and would involve plenty of red tape and hoops to jump through.
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Sold To The Highest Bidder?
With Maryland, Virginia, and D.C. all possible spots for the team’s next stadium, it’s likely to come down to what makes the most financial sense to Commanders’ owner Dan Snyder.
Maryland has said it would contribute $400 million, while the Virginia legislature is discussing creating a ‘Stadium Authority’ fund which would be used to help pay for a new stadium. One proposal suggested that Virginia would be offering around $350 million.
How much the Commanders are willing to fork out of their own pockets for their new home has not been disclosed.
The team is determined to leave FedEx Field, which opened in 1997. The Commanders own the stadium and surrounding property, but their contract to play there expires in 2026. While the contract can be renewed if necessary, it doesn’t appear to be in the team’s plans.
AP Photo/Alex Brandon