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City Attorney Reviews SDSU West’s Mission Valley Proposal

A rendering of the SDSU West plan to redevelop SDCCU Stadium is shown in this...

Credit: San Diego State University

Above: A rendering of the SDSU West plan to redevelop SDCCU Stadium is shown in this undated image.

San Diego’s city attorney has reviewed the SDSU West proposal to redevelop the Mission Valley SDCCU Stadium site and she sees a lot of uncertainty in the initiative.

The city’s mayor and several city council members asked Mara Elliott to review the initiative now that it has enough valid signature to qualify for the ballot. She said the SDSU West proposal comes without a lot of guarantees.

The measure calls for the development of a 35,000-seat Joint Use Stadium, a River Park and open space, facilities for education, research and entrepreneurial programs, commercial space and housing.

Document

Report To The Honorable Mayor And Members Of The City Council SDSU West Campus Research Center, Stadium And River Park Initiative

Report To The Honorable Mayor And Members Of Th...

The San Diego City Attorney reviews the SDSU West proposal for the development of the Mission Valley stadium site.

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The 15-page analysis of the SDSU West Campus Research Center, Stadium and River Park Initiative is an effort to give the proposal the same review the city attorney gave to the SoccerCity plan being offered by FS Investors.

Elliott called the measure difficult to analyze because there are a lot of uncertainties, including whether SDSU or another government entity ends up buying the site, what the purchase agreement with the city involves, and what happens after the sale.

In a statement, SDSU West supporters said their proposal provides a "framework":

“We appreciate the City Attorney’s thorough review of the SDSU West Initiative. SDSU West creates a framework for San Diego State University and the City of San Diego to reach a sales agreement that is in the public’s best interest and begin a public and transparent planning process for the future of the existing stadium site. Ultimately, SDSU West provides the strongest protection to the City and taxpayers that this critical land is preserved for public benefit,” the statement read.

RELATED: San Diego State Might Tap Taxpayer Funds To Expand Into Mission Valley

Board of trustees

Once the sale is complete, the land will be developed by San Diego State University but final approval over that development will fall to the California State University System board of trustees.

The report said there is no guarantee any of SDSU’s proposed plans for the site would be built as currently being proposed.

Elliott’s report also found there are no guarantees a stadium, River Park or affordable housing would be built. The document said development control of the site will belong to state officials, meaning it is unlikely city development guidelines would apply.

In the report, the city attorney asked and answered specific questions:

Q: Will adoption of the initiative require that the development outlined in the initiative be built?

A: No.

Q:Does the initiative require a stadium to be built?

A: No.

Q: What happens if a stadium is not built?

A: There is no remedy for the city if a stadium is not built within seven years of the sale, or at all.

Q: Does the Initiative require the purchaser to build a River Park?

A: No. There is no remedy in the initiative if the River Park is not constructed within seven years or at all.

Q: Will the Development include affordable housing?

A: That is unclear. The city could not enforce those (affordable housing) requirements against the state.

Q: Would the initiative require city taxpayer funds?

A: That is unclear. The initiative doesn’t state who will pay for River Park improvements on city land.

Q: Can the purchaser transfer its interest in the site?

A: Yes. The State Board of Trustees will make the ultimate use and development determination for the Existing Stadium Site including whether the site will be sold to a third party.

San Diego’s city attorney reviews the SDSU West proposal and she sees a lot of uncertainty in the initiative.

San Diego’s city attorney reviews the SDSU West proposal and she sees a lot of uncertainty in the initiative.

Transcript

San Diego’s city attorney has reviewed the SDSU West proposal to redevelop the Mission Valley SDCCU Stadium site and she sees a lot of uncertainty in the initiative.

KPBS is a service of San Diego State University.

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