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New Stadium Faces Stubborn Obstacles

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Stadium proponents are urging San Diegans to keep an open mind as the city considers building a new multi-million dollar facility for the Chargers.

— San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders and his team recently returned from a whirlwind tour around the country to see how several other cities have created sports and entertainment districts.

But a new stadium in San Diego faces several obstacles, including needing two-thirds of voters to approve any new taxes specifically for the project. There are also reports that backers of an expansion to the Convention Center don’t see a stadium fitting into their plans.

But Fred Maas, special assistant to the mayor on the stadium project, said those aren’t necessarily deal breakers.

"We need to engender a spirit of cooperation and collaboration so that we work together, not feel as though we’re in competition," he said. "And if that’s the result of all this then our city will be better off, not just the facility."

Maas said he’s not denying any political reality, but he said the project could be much more than a stadium and would be a regional asset.

It is estimated the public contribution to a new stadium could be about $500 million. The mayor has said he'd like a public vote on the project in November 2012.

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