Mar 27, 2024 - Sports

Haslams weighing Browns stadium options

Dee and Jimmy Haslam watch the Cleveland Browns during practice.

Weighing the options. Photo: Nick Cammett/Getty Images

Browns owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam used the NFL's Annual League Meeting in Orlando this week to address the future of Cleveland Browns Stadium.

The latest: During an interview with reporters on Monday, the Haslams confirmed they are exploring two possibilities:

  • A $1 billion renovation to the current stadium or a new, domed stadium outside the city in Northeast Ohio with an estimated cost of $2 billion.

What they're saying: "We're looking at both options," Dee Haslam said. "Not one option is above the other.

  • "But I do think that Cleveland deserves to be thought of as this evolving, forward-thinking, creative city, as opposed to not thinking big."

The intrigue: The Haslams also confirmed they have an option to buy a 176-acre tract of land in Brook Park, adjacent to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.

  • Jimmy Haslam said a dome is not feasible downtown, because it would be in the flight path of planes at Burke Lakefront Airport, according to Cleveland.com's Mary Kay Cabot.
  • That doesn't appear to be an issue in Brook Park despite Hopkins' proximity.

The big picture: The city's Lakefront Master Plan includes a $20 million land bridge connecting downtown to a piece of land just north of the stadium.

  • On Monday, the Haslams denied that the Brook Park property is a leverage play to get the city to split the bill on a stadium renovation.

Between the lines: The Haslams also said they are close to extending the contracts of general manager Andrew Berry and head coach Kevin Stefanski.

  • During his meeting with reporters Monday, Stefanski said quarterback Deshaun Watson is "right where he needs to be" in rehabbing from season-ending shoulder surgery.

The bottom line: If the Haslams are OK with a renovation and the city's contribution to it, Browns Stadium will probably remain downtown.

  • If they're set on a dome, fans will be traveling to a suburb for home games after the lease on the current stadium expires in 2028.
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