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Nashville Mayor John Cooper stated last week that “doing nothing is not an option” when it comes to the Tennessee Titans’ stadium situation but stressed that there are things he – and the city – will not do to accommodate the local NFL franchise.

Cooper penned an op-ed piece for The Tennessean in which he outlined the current status of Metro Nashville’s negotiations with the Titans and briefly detailed the steps that have led to this point, namely plans to build a new, enclosed stadium at an estimated cost of $1 billion (give or take).

In it, he stressed that Davidson County residents will not bear any burden via property or sales tax increases and that they city’s financial commitment to the project will be a hard cap. Metro Nashville is expected to contribute $500 million, the same amount the state already has committed through a hotel-motel tax hike that will generate the necessary funds from tourism. The rest, likely a minimum of $700 million, will come from the team.

“In the event of construction overruns, I have asked that they be covered by the Titans,” Cooper wrote. “I will not sell public land, raise the sales tax, or spend your property tax dollars to fund the stadium.”

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He also noted that a new stadium would result in a new lease agreement between the Titans and Nashville, one that will remove the city from responsibility for upgrades and maintenance to the facility via Metro’s General Fund, as been the case since Nissan Stadium, the team’s current home, opened in 1999. The current lease runs through 2038.

“Both Nashville and the entire state have benefited tremendously from having the Titans here, and now, we have the opportunity to expand those benefits by getting the city out of the stadium maintenance business,” Cooper wrote. “… Those are general fund dollars that we need for other essential priorities impacting neighborhoods and families – like our public schools, first responders, homelessness, and housing.”

Franchise officials have said they hope to open the new facility, which is still in the planning stages, in time for the start of the 2026 season.

In his piece, Cooper characterized the process, which started approximately 18 months ago, as “near a final proposal.” He also specified that any final agreement would – among other things – ensure the Titans remain in Nashville “for the long-term” and that the city will work toward meaningful and productive development in the area around the new stadium, which will be built adjacent to the current one.

“Rather than pouring over a billion dollars into an aging stadium, we began working with the Titans and the state on the idea of building a new enclosed stadium for Nashville,” Coopoer wrote. “… We are working on plans for a new stadium because doing nothing is not an option, and renovating the current stadium would be financially irresponsible.”