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San Diego State Rejects Latest Plan To Redevelop Qualcomm Stadium Into SoccerCity

San Diego State Rejects Latest Plan To Redevelop Qualcomm Stadium Into SoccerCity

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Developers of the proposed $4B SoccerCity development in San Diego on Thursday "released revisions to their plan to redevelop the Qualcomm Stadium site, but the proposal again was swiftly rejected" by San Diego State Univ., according to a front-page piece by Roger Showley of the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE. A campus leader said that the changes "didn’t do much to improve the offer the university turned down months ago." SDSU on Tuesday had said that it was "ending all negotiations over the plan" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 5/19). In San Diego, Kevin Acee reported new terms of FS Investors' agreement with Mayor Kevin Faulconer show the development group "won’t be paying a mere $10,000 for the Qualcomm Stadium land." The group, which is seeking an MLS club for the development, also would be "building a stadium that holds 33,500 spectators right away," something SDSU had wanted. The terms would be "built into the lease and be legally binding should SoccerCity be approved by voters in a November special election." With the concessions from FS Investors in hand, Faulconer is "expected to endorse the project." The terms stipulate the lease would be "voided and the property would remain with the city if FS Investors did not secure an MLS expansion franchise." If SDSU agrees to a "binding stadium joint venture by Dec. 1, FS Investors will contribute half the cost to build a stadium that holds 33,500 for football (32,500 seated, 1,000 standing) and 'will be designed to accommodate expansion to 40,000 seats in a manner that balances cost and revenue for those new seats'" (SANDIEGOUNIONTRIBUNE.com, 5/18).

FUTURE IS UNKNOWN: In San Diego, Mark Zeigler wrote SDSU cutting off all negotiations over the plan is a "bold, brash, move ... fraught with risk." However, the alternative is to take a "flawed deal that, in their estimation, could ensure the program’s demise." Play in a "tiny stadium where expansion to 40,000-plus is cost prohibitive, remain on a land-locked campus with little hope to become the kind of Top 50 research institution that attracts interest from power conferences and their television riches," and SDSU football will "die a slow death as the gulf between Div. I’s haves and have-nots inexorably grows wider" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 5/18).

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