Development company Global Sports Ventures is making a play to woo Americans over to the traditional English game. They’re teaming up with the real estate firm JLL to build professional cricket stadiums in eight U.S. cities in the hopes of establishing the sport as a new professional league on par with the NFL or MLB. The stadium developments alone have an estimated cost of $2.4 billion.
The teams and cricket stadiums are likely to be located in California, Washington, DC., Georgia, Florida, Texas, Illinois, and New York or New Jersey—regions where cricket “already has an established following,” according to WXIA in Atlanta.
The league is set to launch in 2020—an ambitious timeline considering the build-out. Every cricket stadium in the franchise has a projected cost of $70 to $125 million and will include a cricket pitch, parking lots, and club house. Additional mixed-use developments at each site—such as retail, restaurants, hotels, offices, and even residential space—will cost another $80 to $100 million.
Though cricket is one of the most popular sports in the world, it’s gained relatively little traction in the U.S. compared to the rest of the globe. Opportunity? Perhaps.