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La Jolla Investor Group Presents Plans To Redevelop Qualcomm Stadium

A rendering of the proposed soccer stadium in Mission Valley, courtesy FS Inv...

Credit: FS Investors

Above: A rendering of the proposed soccer stadium in Mission Valley, courtesy FS Investors.

A La Jolla-based investment group presented its vision Monday to develop the Qualcomm Stadium site in Mission Valley.

La Jolla Investor Group Presents Plans To Redevelop Qualcomm Stadium

GUEST:

Erik Anderson, reporter, KPBS News

A La Jolla-based investment group presented its vision Monday to develop the Qualcomm Stadium site in Mission Valley.

It would undergo a massive transformation if the FS Investor’s vision comes to pass. Their detailed plan includes a new river park, commercial development and a Major League Soccer stadium. Developer Nick Stone said the plan would also add thousands of homes in Mission Valley.

RELATED: Investor Group Wants To Bring MLS To San Diego

“Ultimately, we will build 480 units of on-site affordable housing, 800 units of on-site student-focused housing and 3,520 units of market rate residential,” Stone said.

The proposal needs to be approved by the city because San Diego would have to sell the property. Stone said his team wants to take the expansive parking lot and convert it into a vibrant place to live, work, dine and enjoy sporting events. However, he conceded there will be costs.

“We’re going to create some traffic. We recognize it. It’s going to add trips to the valley. Fortunately, traffic on our side of the valley flows a lot better than the traffic further to the west, within the valley,” Stone said.

The group plans for $50 million worth of mitigation to balance the traffic impact. The developers say their plan solves some major issues for the city, such as relieving San Diego of the cost of maintaining an underused stadium, a major river park would be built and there is a solution for San Diego State University football. The team currently plays games at Qualcomm Stadium and investor Steve Altman said this would give the team a new home.

“I’ve been an Aztec fan for a long time and what really attracted me to this is, not only the soccer and the park and the other development, but creating something that’s synergistic with the needs of San Diego State,” Altman said. “They inevitably have a problem with where they want to play football and I think we solved that problem for them.”

San Diego State University officials say that the density of the current project prevents the school from expanding the new stadium to 40,000 seats. In a statement, the university also raised questions about the plan to let the school have the stadium.

"While the proposed gift of stadium ownership may convey tax advantages to FS Investors, it conveys no revenue or rights of ownership normally associated with a gift,” the statement read.

The university said it looks forward to working with the community on building a multi-use stadium that meets SDSU’s needs. San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has publicly hailed the project. He was on the USS Midway Museum when the developers delivered their bid for a Major League Soccer expansion franchise.

In a statement released Monday, Faulconer said “it's time to examine the plan in detail to make sure it makes sense for taxpayers. I look forward to reviewing the proposal presented to the public today, as well as the public discussion to come."

Developer Doug Manchester has another vision. He wants to spend $500 million to renovate Qualcomm. The stadium could then house an NFL team, San Diego State football and a Major League Soccer team.

Manchester wants to add a new indoor sports arena, in addition to plans for 4,800 homes, 1,000,000 square feet of office space, 500,000 square feet of retail space, plus hotels and parkland. 

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