The National Football League (NFL) owners voted 30-2 to ratify the St. Louis Rams’ relocation application for an immediate move to Los Angeles.
The team will begin playing at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum before eventually moving to a new stadium in Inglewood, Calif., in 2019, according to nfl.com.
After 21 years, the, NFL and the Rams will move back to the country’s second-largest media market. The San Diego Chargers have a one-year option to decide if they also want to relocate Inglewood. The Oakland Raiders will have a one-year option to join the Rams in Inglewood if the Chargers decide to stay in San Diego.
While the move is a win for Los Angeles and the NFL, not everyone is a fan of the deal.
“The NFL ignored the facts, the loyalty of St. Louis fans who supported the team through far more downs than ups, and the NFL ignored a strong market and viable plan for a new stadium,” St. Louis mayor Francis Slay said in a statement. “I am proud of our effort and what St. Louis was able to accomplish in an extraordinarily short period of time.”
The Rams played in Los Angeles for 48 years before moving to St. Louis prior to the 1995 season. While the city submitted a $1.1 billion riverfront venue plan, Rams owner Stan Kroenke was set on Los Angeles.
“We understand the emotions involved of our fans and it’s not easy to do these things,” Kroenke says. “They are purposely made hard, but we’re here today. We made a decision and we worked long and hard at the various alternatives. When they didn’t succeed we worked to this point.”
For more information, visit nfl.com. — J.B.