A new stadium that would keep the Chargers in San Diego is now on life support.
This isn’t just because AEG’s boss—Philip Anschutz—is committed to building a downtown Los Angeles stadium without public funds.
It’s because governor Jerry Brown is proposing to eliminate all redevelopment agencies in the state, take their funds and apply them to the state’s massive deficit.
Without a redevelopment arm in San Diego, a new stadium is more impossible than improbable.
“We’re done, finished,” Chargers stadium point-person Mark Fabiani told the Union-Tribune’s Tim Sullivan on Friday. “Redevelopment money is an essential part of the downtown concept and without it, the project is dead.”
According to the UT, Brown hopes to take the money allocated to redevelopment agencies in California and apply it to the state budget next year. He would then continue to apply those same funds to education and city and county general funds.
So, the city may have the money for redevelopment, but it will not be protected as such if it is in the general fund. There, the city can allocate the money to where ever it pleases.
But the city has not given up on the possibility of funding a new stadium, even without the redevelopment agency.
“We will look at every other possible option if the redevelopment dollars go away,” said Jerry Sanders spokesman Darren Pudgil told the UT. “But that certainly doesn’t bode well for a new stadium … We don’t want to overreact, but the bottom line is losing redevelopment dollars would be devastating for San Diego.”
All this comes at a time when AEG has promised Los Angeles that not a single dollar of taxpayer money will go into building what is being called the Los Angeles Event Center.
“There will be no public dollars invested in the stadium,” AEG chief executive Tim Leiweke told the Los Angeles City Council.
Located adjacent to Staples Center and L.A. Live, AEG sees this new development as the final piece of its more than a decade’s long redevelopment of the southern area of downtown Los Angeles.
There has been a question of how much the project will cost. However, AEG has not confirmed a price tag yet.
Apparently, since the stadium will be built on AEG’s tab, it doesn’t have to disclose the final asking price.
“The important thing here is that this is our money, so it shouldn’t matter to anyone else whether it’s $1 billion, $1.2 billion or $1.5 billion,” Leiweke told the Los Angeles Business Journal. “We’re going to pay for the stadium—whatever it costs. Period.”
If AEG is able to fund a billon dollar facility on its own, and if Brown’s proposal to end redevelopment agencies in the state comes to fruition, then Chargers fans will get their downtown stadium—not in San Diego, but in L.A.
For more info: Visit the San Diego Stadium Coalition website. Visit our San Diego Chargers Examiner, Dave Thomas. For more on the NFL, visit our NFL Examiners, Jeff Bergen and Reid Kerr. Follow me on Twitter.