Here are the biggest questions about the Jaguars’ stadium renovation proposal
Artist Casto Solano’s concept rendering of public art for the Jaguars’ team facility.

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If the Jaguars 'Stadium of the Future' is to become a reality, these questions must be answered first.

The Jacksonville Jaguars are presenting their plans for renovations of TIAA Bank Field — what they are calling “The Stadium of the Future.”

In truth, it’s as close to a new build as you are likely to see in the NFL.

If the renderings are realized, the ambitious project would transform the stadium into a state-of-the-art, modern NFL stadium, something team owner Shad Khan and team president Mark Lamping have been talking about for years.

The plan calls for a seating capacity of approximately 62,000 with the ability to expand for events like the Georgia-Florida game or a college football playoff game, an event noted in the presentation.

The presentation was impressive — nobody does renderings like the Jaguars — but there are a lot of questions remaining. Among the biggest questions:

How much will the project cost?

Lamping said if the stadium were being built from scratch, the cost estimate would be around $2.4 billion. Because it’s a renovation, albeit an extensive one, the cost will be significantly less than that. Projections hover around the $1 billion mark to transform the stadium.

Who will pay for it?

The proposed plan includes a split of costs between the Jaguars and the City of Jacksonville. The city’s contribution will have to be approved by the City Council and the Mayor’s Office. It’s worth noting outgoing mayor Lenny Curry had a supportive relationship with the Jaguars. Mayor-elect Donna Deegan has said she plans to bring in a special negotiator to represent the city in talks with the Jaguars.

How long will it take?

The plans for the stadium renovation are expected to take about two years to complete. That would mean if the construction were to start at the conclusion of the 2024 season, sometime in January or February of 2025, the Jaguars would not be able to play in the stadium until the 2027 season.

Where will the Jaguars play in the meantime?

Yet to be determined, although it’s reasonable to expect Orlando’s Camping World Stadium and Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville to be considered. Also, the possibility of playing two home games in London, as was the plan before the pandemic scrapped international games in 2020.

What happens if the city doesn’t agree to pay half?

This is the looming question. Does the city really have a choice? It’s very difficult to see a scenario where the stadium renovation does not go forward. The final price tag and some of the features could change. For instance, the difference between the Jaguars’ renderings for the Daily’s Place amphitheater and the final product are worlds apart. The same thing could happen with the football stadium. Aside from a solution for shading and cooling the stands, everything else is likely to be a part of the negotiations.

The Jaguars have scheduled 14 community huddles to hear more from fans about their questions and concerns. How much that input will impact the final design remains to be seen.

Cole Pepper

Cole Pepper has covered professional, college and high school sports in Florida since 1996. Originally from the Kansas City area, Pepper came to Jacksonville to launch a sports radio station, the first step in a career that has included work in radio, television, and online reporting. He was the studio host for the Jaguars radio network for 15 seasons and now consults for JAX USL, the group bringing professional men's and women's soccer to northeast Florida. You can reach Cole at [email protected] or on Twitter @ColePepper

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