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Politics

Study Confirms New Chargers Stadium In San Diego Is Likely To Cost $1B Or More

An overall view of the San Diego Chargers playing against the Oakland Raiders at Qualcomm Stadium, Nov. 16, 2014.
Gregory Bull / Associated Press
An overall view of the San Diego Chargers playing against the Oakland Raiders at Qualcomm Stadium, Nov. 16, 2014.

It looks as if a new NFL football stadium in San Diego really could cost $1 billion or more.

A study released Wednesday by the National University System Institute for Policy Research confirms previous estimates that a new stadium in San Diego will cost at least $725 million — and more likely more than $1 billion.

The costs are controversial because public funds may be used to complete the project.

Last month, the chairman of a task force that's developing a financing plan for a National Football League-quality stadium in Mission Valley estimated the price tag would be between $700 million and $1.5 billion.

"Developing a financing plan for a new stadium requires estimating the amount of money that will be required," said National University System Institute for Policy Research President Erik Bruvold. "This report seeks to help with that effort — providing a rough estimate for what San Diego will need to spend to construct a stadium similar to those going up in other NFL-cities."

Bruvold said the average cost of the last 20 NFL stadiums to be built was $618 million.

However, when adjusted for inflation and given the reality of construction costs in Southern California, the number increases to $898 million.

Bruvold said NFL franchises are clamoring for state-of-the-art facilities that can attract fans away from their "large TVs, dedicated viewing areas in their homes and who have a multitude of viewing options available to them," which just add to the costs.

Amenity-heavy stadiums built in Dallas, New Jersey and Santa Clara — and under construction in Atlanta and Minneapolis — would cost $1.7 billion if built in Southern California, he said. The five most recently built facilities — excluding Dallas and New Jersey — would cost $1.4 billion in 2020, according to Bruivold.

He said the San Diego price tag by 2020 could reach $1.7 billion.

The financing plan from the task force is expected to be made public next month.