California NFL stadiums creep forward

California may be setting records for budget deficits, but that isn’t stopping it from also setting records for most NFL stadium projects all at the same time. Some recent developments:

  • The city of San Diego is about to hire a stadium consultant to explore ways to pay for a new downtown stadium for the Chargers near Petco Park. Chargers stadium czar Mark Fabiani told the San Diego Union Tribune yesterday that the total cost at that site could be less than $800 million, though it’s unclear if he was including land costs — the Union Trib notes that Fabiani had previously indicated that revenue from developing land around a new stadium “would play a big part” (their words) in funding construction.
  • Zennie Abraham, a former economic advisor to the city of Oakland, notes that San Francisco came out with an economic environmental impact report for its 49ers stadium plan the same time as Santa Clara issued its EIR, and claims the S.F. report looks better. (Abraham derides the Santa Clara report as “written as if by a snickering, snipping bureaucrat who had no patience with questions.”) Abraham further notes that with two cities in the running, “the NFL will use Santa Clara as a, well, pawn, in the creation of a deal that ultimately works for both the league and the 49ers.” Of course, he could just as easily have said that San Francisco will be used as a pawn to get a better Santa Clara deal. It’s how whipsawing works.
  • “Walnut’s most high-profile resident” came out in favor of the new NFL stadium proposal in neighborhing Industry, calling it “a great opportunity to provide a lot of jobs and to be an economic boost for the area.” This famous Walnuttian? Charlie Beck, who was just appointed to be the new chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, notwithstanding that he lives 20 miles from the city limits. (Also, Lance Parrish and Taboo may argue this designation.)
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6 comments on “California NFL stadiums creep forward

  1. Do note that Abraham is a vehement San Francisco/Oakland partisan so anything written by him should be read in that light about both the 49ers and Athletics.

  2. The “EIR” for Santa Clara is an ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT Report—not sure why anyone would compare this to an ECONOMIC impact report—and it should be obvious to all that there would be great disparity in tone between the 2 reports—Either Neil or Zennie should check their stories

  3. It’s Zennie. I read his article too and he mixes the two pretty good. He also pooh pooh’s the idea that Candlestick point, even the new stadium plan not just the existing Candlestick Park, has no transit access. He finds it totally acceptable that there’s a few buses that run to the various rail lines and would continue to do so at the potential Hunter’s Point site. I’ll give credit to Zennie however in that he prefaces his article by saying he’s a SF partisan. So you can take the rest of his article with a grain of salt.

  4. They’re both environmental impact reports – I just typoed. Though EIRs do typically include some projections on economic impact as well.

  5. Meanwhile, the clock continues to tick virtually silently for the Raiders with their lease at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum expiring after the 2010 season reportedly. Al Davis reportedly has feelers out in a number of other markets but is keeping a low profile concerning the future of the Raiders in Oakland, which is probably no better than 50-50. The big questions, of course, are where and how soon would a Raiders relocation take place. When it does happen it will be like a sudden bolt of lightning, and where they will go will probably rather surprising.

  6. Wow, that has to be the worst-timed comment in history:

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/11/19/SPAG1AMR7T.DTL

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