Vi Lyles Says She Hasn't Been Informed About Reported Panthers Plan For Expansion In SC

Dec 13, 2018

Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles said she has not been told about a possible move of the Carolina Panthers' headquarters to South Carolina.

The Post and Courier reported yesterday that the NFL franchise is planning to build a new team headquarters and practice facility just over the state line in York County. The development would also include hotels, stores and restaurants.

The move would add 300 jobs to York County.

Lyles, who said she finds Panthers owner David Tepper to be straightforward, hasn't heard about the possibility.

"He hasn't said anything to me about this, and I'm going to rely on his ability to communicate and be straightforward around this," Lyles said during an appearance on Charlotte Talks.

Mick Mixon, the team's play-by-play voice, hinted at a York County Regional Chamber of Commerce meeting in November that the project was in the team's near future in a piece of audio posted on WRHI.

He later backtracked, saying that he has "no idea" if the purchase will happen in the immediate future. David Swenson, executive director of York County Economic Development, said that no one from the Panthers has reached out to him about the possibility.

Tepper bought the team in July for $2.2 billion in cash, an NFL record, and has voiced his desires to upgrade team facilities, including a practice field.

He has said that he is not interested in moving Bank of America Stadium from Charlotte.

Charlotte in 2013 agreed to make $87.5 million dollars of capital improvements to the stadium in return for a “hard tether” that would keep the Panthers in Charlotte. That tether will expire in 2019.

"I don’t read anything into this except a newspaper story that came out that has a lot of 'maybes' and 'might bes,' " Lyles concluded.