While sports fans are excited about football’s return to Los Angeles and a forthcoming stadium in Inglewood, real estate industry players are capitalizing on the momentum by filling the untapped market for housing, offices, retailers, and entertainment venues in the city.
The projects, some underway and others on the drawing board, have the potential to transform Inglewood into an investor’s darling just a few years after the city hovered on the brink of bankruptcy.
Stan Kroenke’s Hollywood Park Land Co. is poised to anchor the changes with an estimated $2 billion stadium that will leap onto the world stage when it hosts the Super Bowl in 2021. A theater, hotel, office campus, shopping and dining district, and parks will fill the rest of the 300-acre site. The restored Forum opened next door in 2014, and the revamped Hollywood Park Casino is scheduled to reopen this fall. A 300-home project is in the works across the street, and plans are in progress to build a mixed-use development at the end of Market Street in Inglewood’s downtown. The Crenshaw-LAX light-rail line is slated to tie things together with three stations opening in the city.
Inglewood Mayor James Butts sees the Forum’s packed calendar as a sign of domino effect already underway.
“Entertainment is a key element of cities that are going to prosper,” he said. “If you have entertainment, you have people and cars. With people and cars come cash, credit cards, and debit cards.”
Hollywood Park is poised to be another catalyst as the largest privately financed construction project in the United States.
“There will be thousands of jobs and billions of local spending in Inglewood that would not have occurred if the dying horseracing business at Hollywood Park had been left intact,” said Terry Fancher, executive managing director at Stockbridge Capital Partners, a partner in Hollywood Park Land.
But developers haven’t been able to spike the ball just yet: One remaining challenge is ensuring that people visit Inglewood more than the roughly 10 days a year that the Los Angeles Rams will play each season. Even if the San Diego Chargers choose to join the team in the stadium, the number of game days would only reach 20.
“They really need to focus on what’s going to draw people outside of the stadium,” said Joe Clarke, director of commercial real estate at Keller Williams Silicon Beach. The developments should also be in sync with the needs of long-established families and businesses.
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