Could area near the Raiders stadium in Vegas be next Gaslamp Quarter?

StayBridge Suites overlooks the construction site for the future Las Vegas Raiders’ Stadium, Thursday Feb 8, 2018.

When the home to the Las Vegas Raiders opens in the summer of 2020, some of the stadium site’s neighbors may relocate, willingly or not.

The area is mainly home to industrial, automotive and small businesses, but as land and property values rise, as the anticipated summer 2020 completion of the 65,000-seat, $1.9 billion stadium project gets closer, the landscape is expected to change.

Many property and business owners surrounding the site were reluctant to speak to the Sun last week when asked about their plans with stadium construction now in full swing.

The unwillingness is likely due to their uncertain future in the area, said Greg Tassi, senior vice president of advisory and transaction services, industrial and logistics for CBRE. The real estate firm represents owners of various industrial parcels in the vicinity.

“The type of users that I represent, there’s probably more of a concern for that type of use (stadium) coming in because of the effect it’s going to have on their rent,” Tassi said. “Industrial is typically the least expensive price-per-square-foot basis, compared to retail and office types of rents. Once things start to open, the industrial users that are there won’t want to move, but if rents are going to go 30 to 40 percent up, they’re probably going to have to move.”

Hot Rod City, a group of nine buildings near the corner of Dean Martin Road and Ali Baba Lane featuring mainly automotive businesses, including the Hollywood Car Museum, plans to stick it out for the time being, said Steve Levesque, who handles leasing on the site.

Originally bought by MD Properties, headed by billionaire Michael Dezer in 2006, plans for the business complex were to build condominium towers on it. But once the recession hit, plans changed and Dezer brought in Levesque to lease out the spaces. Now running at near capacity, once a tenant leaves, a new one is line ready to fill in the space.

Those tenants aired concerns to Levesque about whether the site would change with the stadium coming in. Meeting with Dezer, who also owns all the entertainment-themed vehicles in the museum, Levesque was assured there were no immediate plans for redevelopment.

“He’s not a seller. He has all these classic cars and he never wants to sell them,” Levesque said. “He’s a buyer and a developer. As far as this complex, he said he has no desire to do anything with it, probably for the next five-to-seven years, at least, because he’s busy with all his developments in Florida.”

As the area starts to develop and change, the land values go up and it make more sense to do some other projects that would benefit from the stadium.

Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak envisions an entertainment district similar to the Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego near Petco Park the home Major League Baseball’s San Diego Padres.

Raiders Stadium Neighborhood

Construction is in full swing at the site for the future Las Vegas Raiders' Stadium, Thursday Feb 8, 2018. Launch slideshow »

“Obviously at this point it’s underutilized being 100 or 200 yards away from a 65,000-seat, $2 billion stadium,” Sisolak said. “There’s been discussion with people trying to do assemblage back there.”

With a large amount of the property being divided into quarter or 2 1/2 acre pieces, potential developers are trying to assemble 5 to 10 acre sites. Talks have surfaced about possibly changing the zoning in the area to bring some entertainment, retail, and food and beverage establishments in the stadium area, Sisolak said.

Sisolak said he sees “foodie-type” establishments, featuring various types of restaurants and sports themed bar and restaurants, including team specific ones.

“There’s a couple that talked to me about a Raiders theme and one that talked to me about a UNLV theme, trying to capitalize on the UNLV sports part of it,” he said. “I think you’d get a combination of all of that.”

Additionally Sisolak said he’s heard talks of possible boutique hotels going up in the area, but that would require amassing a large portion of property, which will take more time than a site for a bar or restaurant.

EJM Development Co. owns some properties in the Raiders stadium site vicinity and said discussions have intensified since the groundbreaking ceremony in November.

“We expect big things to happen, but right now we’re in a wait-and-see mode,” said Brad Meyers, regional director for EJM. “There’s a lot of people that have shown preliminary interest, but if they can make it happen, I don’t know.”

One of the plots of land EJM owns is a vacant corner piece of land directly across Russell Road from the stadium site that is zoned for a hotel. The land is being used as a temporary parking lot for construction workers after EJM stepping in to temporarily aid parking issues the construction workers are facing.

“We have a short-term lease with one of the contractors to let them park their vehicles there,” he said. “The site is so tight they don’t have room to accommodate parking for all the construction workers. Might as well generate some revenue while we wait to see what goes on in the area.”

As far as activity on the site goes, it’s mainly been ground work thus far, including being utilized to caliche blown up and removed and a new flood channel being constructed.

“They have to remove around 600,000 cubic yards of dirt and caliche. So, it’s a lot of underground work right now,” Sisolak said. “I think it will late summer or early fall before we start seeing any work go vertical.”

Real Estate