The next step was a crucial one; to agree on a stadium lease and have it approved by today. Well, that lease was approved unanimously board member Steve Hill announced at the Las Vegas Stadium Authority at their meeting Thursday.
The reason for the urgency was that the lease needed to be done before the NFL league meeting next week, May 22 in Chicago.
Had a lease not been agreed to today, and ready for the league meetings next week, the next chance the Raiders would have to present the lease to the NFL wouldn’t occur until the next league meeting in October.
That kind of delay would almost certainly mean they would not break ground on time in January in an already ambitious 30-month construction window in order to open for the 2020 season and therefore the opening would be pushed back a year until 2021.
Just today we saw this happen with the Rams/Chargers shared LA stadium project. Due to record rains this year, the construction has been slower than expected. They were on a 32-month timeline for opening in 2019. Now that opening has been pushed to 2020.
That means should the Raiders continue to clear hurdles in a timely fashion, all three teams would open their new building in 2020 in a great big show of NFL muscle.