Oakland Raiders owner considers move to Concord

The exterior of O.co Coliseum is shown before an NFL football game between the Oakland Raiders and the Kansas City Chiefs in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 23, 2011. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)
October 6, 2013 5:21:38 PM PDT
Big buzz in the Bay Area sporting world - there's word that an East Bay city could become the new home for the Oakland Raiders. The franchise could be on the move to the Naval Weapons Center in Concord where a new stadium would be built. And it may happen sooner than anyone expected.

The team may need a new home soon. Its current lease at the O.co Coliseum expires at the end of this season.

These days, the only inhabitants at the former Concord Naval Weapons Station are a lot of squirrels and some cows. But it could be the new home for the Oakland Raiders.

"I think it would be great if the Raiders found a new home," Concord mayor Dan Helix said. When asked if that new home could be in Concord, he replied, "Absolutely!"

Just days ago Mayor Helix gave a 90 minute tour of the 5,000 acre site to Raiders owner Mark Davis who's scouting for a new stadium location for the team.

Cornell: "Did he seem to like the property in the tour?"
Dan: "What I can say is he asked a lot of questions. And I think that questions are kinda like objections. If you get them, there's interest."

Davis told the mayor he liked the site's close proximity to the North Concord BART station.

The Raiders have been looking for a new home to replace the Coliseum, which was built in the 1960s.

Believe it or not, most fans say the Raider Nation will still be Raider Nation, even if it's in Concord.

"We used to go to Los Angeles to see Raider games, so Concord would be a closer step than Los Angeles," Raiders fan Johnny Martinez said.

Raiders fan David Rhodes adds, "They need a new stadium. I mean, they're topping off Mt. Davis. It don't matter, the fan base will be there. Concord would probably even be better, it's closer to most people."

However, Raiders fan Jolynn Piazza disagrees, saying, "Not Concord. We can't do what San Francisco is doing , going to Santa Clara? Come on now, can't do that. That's out."

The Navy has decommissioned the old weapons station, but is still cleaning it up. It could be ready for development next year.

The Raiders owner made no commitment to the property, telling the mayor he'd be in touch.

The O.co Coliseum is 47-year-old. The Raiders have been looking into their options for a while now.

Just last month, consultants hired by the team proposed building a 50,000 seat stadium at the exact location of the current Coliseum.

The team has also been looking at potential stadium deals in Los Angeles.

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