The San Diego Chargers wasted no time in ripping the city and county’s updated plans for a $1.1 billion stadium in the city’s Mission Valley, saying the entire project is “ill-fated.”
The Chargers made a presentation to the NFL’s Los Angeles Committee on Monday and plan to update the league’s owners on Tuesday on a plan to share a $1.7 billion stadium with the Oakland Raiders in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson.
St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke also plans to update the league on his proposed $1.86-billion, 80,000-seat NFL stadium in Inglewood, across from Hollywood Park.
During a press conference announcing a new financial plan for the stadium, San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer also presented new stadium renderings and a draft of an environmental impact report (EIR).
Falconer said the stadium would be built with $362.5 million from the Chargers, a $200 million loan from the NFL and $187.5 million in personal seat licenses. The city will also contribute $200 million with another $150 million coming from the county.
Falconer says the public contribution will be capped at 32% of the total project, and the Chargers would be responsible any overruns.
“Both history and current polling show it will be extraordinarily difficult to persuade voters to devote hundreds of millions of General Fund tax dollars to a stadium, but in the end any funding plan is going to be dragged down into the quicksand of the City's legally inadequate environmental review process—a process that will be bogged down in court for years before it is eventually declared illegal,” Chargers stadium point man Mark Fabiani said in a statement.
Last month, the city of San Diego approved a $2.1 million plan for the EIR, which the Chargers have said is “full of holes and will be thrown out by the courts.”
San Diego’s city council has until Sept. 11 to approve the EIR and agree to a deal with the Chargers for the city to schedule a Jan. 12 public vote on the stadium because of a California law requiring at least an 88-day time period between an issue being placed on a ballot and a public vote commencing.
“We will not have an election in January unless we have a final deal that has been agreed to," Faulconer said.
The Chargers have long maintained that is it impossible for the city to complete a thorough EIR by the deadline, saying that most environmental studies take up to 18 months to finish.
- Scooby Axson