There’s a new mayor in San Diego, and the Chargers are all ready to greet him with their new stadium demands:
After meeting with a ballot lawyer on Tuesday, Fabiani said the team likely is looking at a city-wide special election in June 2015 to seek approval for a long-sought replacement for 70,000-seat Qualcomm Stadium.
“I think that because our issues are going to go to a vote, this is not going to be some kind of backroom deal that someone can characterize as a giveaway to downtown interests,” [Chargers stadium czar Mark] Fabiani said. “It potentially could be one of the most heavily campaigned issues in San Diego, maybe the most campaigned issue ever.”…
Plans for that project have fallen through, so the Chargers hope to build an open-air stadium east of Petco Park, home of baseball’s Padres. It would seat roughly 62,000 fans, with the ability to be expanded to 70,000 seats for Super Bowls. That stadium would cost between $800 million and $900 million, Fabiani said. Besides contributions from the Spanos family and the NFL, the Chargers still want to use proceeds from the sale or lease of the city-owned Qualcomm Stadium site and possibly the sale and lease of the city-owned site of the sports arena.
Okay, so what does new mayor Kevin Faulconer actually think of all this, since the Associated Press apparently didn’t think to check? Faulconer hasn’t said much in the way of specifics, but did earn the backing of U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester, who has already established that he has no patience for anyone who isn’t a “cheerleader” for a Chargers stadium, so that’s probably a decent sign for the Spanos family. If they need to convince not just the mayor (and city council) but the voters in a referendum, though, that could be a tougher nut to crack. Presumably when Fabiani says “heavily campaigned issue” he means “we have a stockpile of unmarked twenties ready to go” — which he’ll probably need to, given the 100-1 rule.