Next move: Assembly must back NFL deal Answering questions about coming steps in football return

February 10, 1996|By Brad Snyder | Brad Snyder,SUN STAFF

What happens next?

First, the Maryland Stadium Authority and the governor are going to spend up to 30 days making sure the General Assembly is behind them, stadium authority executive director Bruce Hoffman said. That will allow them to go to the Board of Public Works for approval of the stadium project.

What will happen at the Board of Public Works?

The stadium authority will go before the board on two occasions: first, to get approval for the financing plan; second, to be able to sell bonds. Opponents of the stadium will be able to speak at those two hearings, but opposition on the board is supposedly minimal.

What can be done before receiving the support of the General Assembly and the Board of Public Works?

Not much. But if that approval is not received by March 1, stadium authority officials may go ahead and begin making improvements to Memorial Stadium, because that money already has been appropriated.

What has to be done to Memorial Stadium?

About 10,000 to 15,000 seats must be added to bring the seating capacity up to 65,000. Improvements also need to made to the lighting, field, press box, locker rooms and other facilities. "There's a lot of work that has to be done on the stadium for it to be up to NFL standards," Mr. Hoffman said. Getting the stadium ready by late August is one of the state's biggest concerns.

Where will the team play?

The team is scheduled to play the 1996 and 1997 seasons at Memorial Stadium before moving into a new stadium at Camden Yards.

Where will the team train?

At the Colts' former training facility in Owings Mills. The team, using money from its permanent seat licenses, will renovate that facility before building a new one and team offices. The new facility also will be built with money from PSLs, and the team is looking at locations in the city and in several surrounding counties, Mr. Hoffman said. Owner Art Modell said several local colleges have approached him about holding training camp on their campuses.

What are permanent seat licenses and how much money will the team and the state make off them?

A PSL is a one-time fee that fans must pay in order to purchase season tickets. It is estimated that the licenses will average $1,500. Under the deal Mr. Modell signed with the state, the team can receive $75 million to offset moving expenses. PSLs could raise $80 million, and any license funds that exceeded moving expenses are to go to the state.

What will the stadium authority do when it receives approval from the Board of Public Works?

It will begin drawing up detailed plans of the new stadium with the Kansas City, Mo.-based HOK architectural firm. It will take about two months of planning before contractors can begin moving public utilities around.

When will ground officially be broken?

Probably not until August or September. Mr. Hoffman said he prefers August because that gives the stadium authority two years get the team's new home ready.

What will the team be called?

"Browns" stays with Cleveland. The team plans to conduct a fan poll for a new name. And Mr. Modell has not totally ruled out bringing "Colts" back to Baltimore.

How can tickets be ordered?

The team has not made any plans beyond those in place since Nov. 6. Fans interested in purchasing tickets should call (800) 881-8559 for information. No money is being taken yet. Those who signed up during the 1993 expansion ticket drive will receive priority.

What television stations will carry the games?

NBC (Channel 11) generally carries games involving teams from the American Football Conference, which includes Mr. Modell's club. However, when a National Football Conference team plays here, the game will be carried by Fox (Channel 45).

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