Manchester stadium plan: Could it succeed?

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — Over the last 15 years, there have been multiple proposals to build an NFL stadium in San Diego.

All have failed and the city lost the team to Los Angeles.

Can local developer Doug Manchester succeed where others have failed?

In a letter to the NFL dated Feb. 8, Manchester is proposing a several billion dollar NFL entertainment center that includes a 70,000-seat stadium.

He would invite the Raiders, Chargers and the NFL to participate in the stadium. His group of investors would provide all of the funding and no voter approval would be required. 

Related Link: San Diego developer – Doug Manchester – offers to build NFL stadium at Qualcomm site

He promises a timely shovel ready project and would upgrade Qualcomm while the new stadium is being built.

Here’s a little history about past stadium projects in San Diego.

The Chargers proposed a mega development in 2004. In 2009, Manchester’s development partner —Perry Dealey — proposed a similar project. At the time, urban planners said such an intense development in Mission Valley was impossible.

That was followed by Manchester proposing to replace the 10th Avenue Marine Terminal with a stadium complex. The San Diego Port Authority opposed.

Then, there was an East Village site by the Chargers, which died when Governor Brown killed re-development.

The mayor’s task force offered up a Mission Valley plan, which the mayor later backed away from. Councilmember Scott Sherman had a Mission Valley plan that went nowhere.

Related Link: State lawmaker reveals plans for the future of Qualcomm Stadium

In the meantime, downtown remained in limbo until the Chargers went to the voters for a stadium and Convention Center project, which the voters rejected.

There we also sites in National City, Chula Vista, Oceanside and Escondido. All of these plans had site or financing problems.

While Manchester’s new plan is privately funded, it has other major issues. The NFL, early on, had said Mission Valley was a non-starter and that doesn’t seem to have changed.

Then there’s this: All large projects that run into environmental problems that delay them for years. The Navy Broadway project has been in the works for over a decade.

Factor in the density problem in Mission Valley. Who pays for reconfiguring traffic patterns impacting the I-15 and I-8 freeways? And building a stadium without a team? The reason previous projects failed in Los Angeles.

The Manchester plan apparently leaves SDSU out of the picture and it has to compete with a soccer stadium plan that’s on the table. 

Read Doug Manchester’s full letter below.

Categories: Local San Diego News