Bali Hai Golf Club on short list of possible Las Vegas stadium sites

The Bali Hai Golf Club has emerged as a potential site for a 65,000-seat domed stadium, joining four other sites as leading locations for the project.

The number of sites under serious consideration for the project narrowed at Thursday’s Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee meeting.

Development partners Las Vegas Sands, Majestic Realty and the Oakland Raiders told committee members they have made initial contact with the operators of the 18-hole golf course south of the Mandalay Bay resort about the possibility of building there.

The other sites that are preferred by the developers are 113 acres at the Wild Wild West truck plaza on Tropicana Avenue west of Interstate 15; a 62-acre site at Russell Road and I-15, west of Mandalay Bay; and two sites on or near the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, campus.

The UNLV sites include 61 acres near the Thomas &Mack Center and the “Trop 42” site at Tropicana and Koval Lane.

The Raiders have promised to pursue relocation to Las Vegas if a stadium financing plan is approved by state lawmakers. The project will cost an estimated $1.7 billion to $2.1 billion and, as proposed, would have a public funding component.

New Raider stadium site proposal at Bali Hai Golf Club (Gabriel Utasi/Las Vegas Review-Journal)

The stadium also would house the UNLV football team and events that are too big for existing Las Vegas arenas.

Although the developers haven’t rejected them, three other sites haven’t received as much scrutiny and are considered secondary options: the 36-acre Rock in Rio festival site at Sahara Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard owned by MGM Resorts International; the Wynn Golf Club east of the Wynn Las Vegas and Encore resorts; and Cashman Center, a 50-acre site in downtown Las Vegas that houses Cashman Field, the current home of the Las Vegas 51s minor-league baseball team.

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman, a member of the 11-person committee charged with making recommendations for the valley’s tourism infrastructure, on Thursday made an impassioned plea to the developers to reconsider the Cashman option. Majestic Realty’s Craig Cavileer said he would schedule a meeting with city officials next week.

Developers hope to have the list of prospective sites narrowed to two by the committee’s next meeting, Aug. 25.

The Bali Hai site first came to light Thursday. It was the unnamed 10th location developers referred to at the committee’s July 11 session.

The golf course land is owned by McCarran International Airport and leased to Walters Golf.

Committee members noted that the Bali Hai location, positioned just off the western end of McCarran, could face the same type of scrutiny the Trop 42 land has had because of its proximity to the western ends of the airport’s parallel east-west runways.

Developers would be required to file for a Federal Aviation Administration review if the project exceeds a height of 200 feet. Because the site is near the end of the runway, there may be even greater scrutiny.

FAA reviews are underway on the two UNLV sites.

Jeremy Aguero of Las Vegas-based Applied Analysis offered site reviews of the UNLV site near the Thomas &Mack Center and the Wild Wild West, Rock in Rio and Cashman Center sites.

The 105-acre Wild Wild West site has the largest footprint of the four, and the Rock in Rio site has the most expensive land value at $128.6 million for 36 acres.

The 61 acres at UNLV has a land value of $30.4 million; the Wild Wild West site, $35.4 million; and the 50-acre Cashman site, $5.3 million.

The Review-Journal is owned by the family of Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Find him on Twitter: @RickVelotta

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