One college football team will have some professional company for a little longer than expected.
In making the move from St. Louis back to Los Angeles, the Rams used USC’s home, the iconic (United?) Coliseum, as its home for the 2017 season. As their $2.6 billion new stadium in Inglewood, which they’ll share with the Chargers, had not been scheduled to open until 2019, the NFL team will spend the next two seasons at the home of the Trojans as well.
That stay has been extended as, according to the Los Angeles Times, construction delays in the building of the stadium will push the opening back to 2020, meaning the Rams will spend the 2019 season in the Coliseum as well. And the reason for the delay? An inordinate amount of rain, with over 15 inches of the wet stuff falling from November, when construction began, and February. That total is more than double the average amount for those times of the year.
From the Times:
The continuing rains really knocked us for a loop,” Bob Aylesworth, principal in charge for the Turner/AECOM Hunt joint venture that is building the stadium, told The Times. “It was a very unforgiving two months for the project. And speaking from a building perspective, it really couldn’t have come at a worse time.”
The weather brought work on the project to a standstill for two months earlier this year. The rain fell at a crucial stage of construction when work centered on digging the enormous hole — 5 million cubic yards of dirt were excavated — in which the stadium will sit. At times, the site looked like a lake, with water standing 12 to 15 feet deep.
The Rams lease with USC and the Coliseum carried an option for the NFL team to play in the stadium, just in case delays such as this pushed the project behind schedule.