A day after Temple postponed plans to study building a $100 million campus stadium, Mayor-elect Jim Kenney said Wednesday he wants to know more about the arrangement between the university and the Eagles regarding use of Lincoln Financial Field.
Earlier on Tuesday, Kenney stated his opposition to the plan in an interview with the Philadelphia Business Journal. That caused the Board of Trustees to postpone its plans until talking to Kenney.
After a panel on community development, Kenney said he wasn't aware the Board of Directors was voting until Tuesday.
"They didn't necessarily have to hold off on the vote if they were going to do planning and design stuff," Kenney said. "My problem is I need to understand better the relationship between Temple and the Eagles and the Linc as it relates to relationship between Pitt, the Steelers and Rooney family. Part of what has driven Temple to want to build a stadium is the amount of money it costs them to use the Linc which is a heavily publicly subsidized facility which increased the value of the Eagles considerably."
Kenney said he wants to explore how Temple could use the Linc at an affordable price or no cost.
"I think it's something we need to have a discussion about because that's what's driving this," he said.
Kenney noted a stadium of 35,000 would not hold the crowds the team would want to see when the Owls face opponents such as Notre Dame and Penn State.
"You're still going to need the Linc," he said. "And if you're going to build a stadium for concerts and other events, you need to explain more to Council and specifically the Council president how it's going to affect the area."
Kenney then added: "Do I think Temple should continue to expand its Division I capabilities and become a Game Day site more than just once? Yeah, I think it's wonderful. My daughter is just transferring there. I'm a Temple lover. However, I also have a responsibility to make sure community is respected, to make sure when we have a publicly invested facility it's available to a university at a cost that's not prohibitive."
Temple president Neil Theobald said Tuesday that the Board of Trustees hoped to meet with Kenney sometime next week to discuss the matter.