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A Streetcar Named NFL Desire: AEG Chief Tim Leiweke Says if We Build it, They Will Come (On Taxpayer-Funded Light Rail)

A famed "red car."
A famed "red car."

This downtown NFL stadium idea isn't even at the blueprint stage, and already the folks behind it are asking taxpayers to support a downtown streetcar that would take you ... (you guessed it) .. right by the venue.

"The Los Angeles streetcar will have an incredible return with major benefits for Los Angeles -- over $1.1 billion in new development and thousands of new jobs,'' said Tim Leiweke, chief of Anshutz Entertainment Group, which wants to build the stadium next to its Staples Center.

That $1.1 billion is mostly stadium money, and even with that kind of cash critics have wondered if there will be enough parking in dense downtown.

Well, with a taxpayer-funded streetcar, you can park and ride.

"The streetcar will provide easy, safe access for thousands of people to enjoy shopping, dining, cultural events, hockey, basketball and football games, along with other sporting events throughout downtown,'' Leiweke said.

Proponents of the rail project, which is included in Metro's long-range transportation plan, unleashed a study Tuesday in favor of the streetcar system downtown.

It states the $125 million streetcars could produce 9,300 jobs and generate about $47 million for L.A.

Not bad. We think it was a mistake for L.A. to get rid of the famed "" in the 1950s.

And this sure has to be better than those Dash buses that go around downtown.

But still, this kinda sounds like a pitch for the NFL stadium rather than one for L.A. as a whole.

-With reporting from City News Service. Got news? Email us. Follow us on Twitter, too: @dennisjromero.


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