Among the first hurdles in bringing the idea to life was finding a suitable location. Site selection began near RFK stadium, then it moved to locations in Northern Virginia and Laurel, Maryland, before finally settling on Prince George’s County, Maryland, just five miles from the Washington Redskins’ original home in the District of Columbia.
In the early phases of the project, Dillon helped put in place $70.5 million in state grants for transportation improvements. The funds were used for parking lots, new Interstate 95 ramps, and upgrades to existing county roads to facilitate traffic.
As Vice President of Finance, Greg Dillon was part of the executive team involved in most every aspect of the stadium development project.
“The $180-million stadium was completed in 17 ½ months, to everyone’s satisfaction”
Dillon concentrated his initial efforts on the economic impact study, then on the important cash management issue, which allowed construction to begin one year before securing the loans. Based on a stadium business model, Dillon’s team negotiated and secured a $155 million construction loan from the Bank Group, which included a complex set of financing documents — serving the competing interests of owner, banker and National Football League.
Dillon was involved throughout construction, working on compliance with Minority Business Enterprise program requirements, clearing punch lists items to comply with the county code, and negotiating a proposed $8 million in change orders — which were resolved for a $4.5 million cost savings.
The $180-million stadium was completed in 17 ½ months, to everyone’s satisfaction.
A later project added Club and Executive Suite level improvements, which required:
- preparing the construction budget;
- negotiating and closing $22.5 million bank financing;
- selecting a development team and negotiating the contracts of architects, engineers and contractors;
- managing all facets of construction (design approval, permit approval, inspector approval and completion); and settling contractor claims, saving $5 million of the proposed $13 million.