Mayor Faulconer talks SoccerCity endorsements
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — One of the hurdles for FS Investors to move forward with its stadium and development project in Mission Valley is to get endorsements from the mayor, the city council and San Diego State.
There have been no endorsements so far, but on Good Morning San Diego, the mayor was sound like he’s getting close.
The endorsements are critical to send a message to the public that the city and the university support the council approving this project outright in June, without having to go to the voters.
Not having the voters weigh in is another hurdle. If the council doesn’t endorse, it goes to the voters next fall, killing San Diego’s chance to get a Major League Soccer franchise this fall.
To that end, city officials will get together with representatives from San Diego State Tuesday to discuss the university’s concerns about its reluctance to date to partner up with SoccerCity.
While not endorsing the project, on Good Morning San Diego, the mayor was coming pretty close.
"I think it’s a great vision because it takes a lot of elements for things we’ve been talking about for a long time now there on the site. When you talk about all of the plans that have been out there taking all of the elements that are not only important to me, but I think to most San Diegans," Mayor Faulconer said.
Mayor Faulconer had waited until the eleventh hour to endorse the Chargers’ downtown stadium. Politically, he had little choice. It involved a tax increase, it had convention space off site, which he opposed and going against it meant the city losing a $2 billion company.
"I think it’s exciting as I said. It’s not just soccer but an opportunity for Aztec Football, a river park and creating a place there in Mission Valley," the mayor said.
The plan includes open spaces, affordable housing, office and retail space and a sports entertainment center.
" … putting all that together in the mix is important, and making sure it’s done right that’s part of my job, but it’s up to the public as they’re out there looking at signatures," Mayor Faulconer said. "To get my endorsement, it requires doing the right thing and I felt very strongly about that with the Chargers."
The mayor said SoccerCity creates a lasting benefit for the city.
" … have educational facilities for families and kids to come down and enjoy, having soccer amenities for kids and families is good, having MLS come to San Diego I think its a great opportunity," he said. " … not only from a financial standpoint but also all the elements and all the parts, get all the things I think make sense, then I"ll support it."
But still San Diego State?
SoccerCity plans a 22,000 seat stadium. The university wants 30,000 seats and may have to finance an expansion itself.
The university also has concerns about future expansion for dormitory rooms and research labs.