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Proposed Stadium Needs More Than Football

Plans to build a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles hinge on more than football. A major element in making the idea work financially for the city is to make it an attractive site for conventions and conferences.
March 18, 2011, 8am PDT | Nate Berg
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But it's still unclear whether the project will be able to lure convention planners and their potentially lucrative events to the city.

"Football is the public focus of a bid by Anschutz Entertainment Group to add a downtown stadium to its portfolio of arena, hotel and theater venues adjoining the Los Angeles Convention Center. But the massive project, using public land, also rests heavily on a hope that a simultaneous overhaul and expansion of the center itself will lift the city into the top ranks of the nation's conference destinations.

"What's driving this vision is the Convention Center.... It doesn't work right," said Timothy J. Leiweke, the AEG chief pushing the stadium deal.

Some convention experts and Los Angeles tourism officials are optimistic that AEG's plan to move a wing of the Convention Center to create room for the stadium would make Los Angeles more attractive to event planners. But others said the project would have to overcome a number of substantial hurdles."

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Published on Wednesday, March 16, 2011 in Los Angeles Times
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