Charlotte must start new Panthers stadium talks by 2037 if city OKs $650M for renovations

When the Carolina Panthers kick off the start of the 2046 season, it could be from inside a new stadium, according to the Charlotte City Council’s agenda for Monday’s meeting.

The agenda outlines terms of ongoing discussions about spending $650 million in public money renovating Bank of America Stadium, the current home of the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte FC. But for the first time publicly, Charlotte officials say in the terms that the city would agree to begin negotiating for a new stadium by 2037.

The new stadium would be located in Charlotte and potentially be ready for the 2046 season, according to terms of the agreement set to be voted on Monday by the City Council.

Terms say the negotiations would be about design and construction of the stadium and the “need for potentially new funding sources.” The $650 million in public funding being discussed for renovations now would come from hospitality taxes — money that must be spent on tourism-related projects.

The General Assembly last year extended Mecklenburg County’s meals tax until 2060. But the hotel occupancy tax wasn’t similarly extended past its 2038 expiration.

If the Charlotte City Council approves renovations Monday, the city and Tepper Sports & Entertainment “will negotiate the use of hospitality funds for the purposes of studies and analysis regarding a new stadium” as part of the talks set to start in 2037. That’s two years before the earliest the Panthers could leave under the $650 million renovation deal.

Some of the proposed renovations include a reimagined South Lawn Pavilion area, upgraded restrooms and new seats throughout the lower bowl. The renovations would not include the construction of a roof or dome.

The council’s Monday business meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Monday in the council chamber of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center at 600 East 4th St.