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Politics

Qualcomm Property May Have Future As University Campus

Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Jan. 12, 2016.
Associated Press
Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Jan. 12, 2016.

Qualcomm Property May Have Future As University Campus
A former state senator said the city of San Diego should consider transferring ownership of the Qualcomm Stadium property to a local university if the Chargers move to a different location.

San Diego State University could be a big winner if the Chargers abandon their Qualcomm home for downtown or Los Angeles.

Former state senator Steve Peace said it might make sense to turn the property over to a university and allow the school to redevelop that area.

The public would have to approve the idea and a benefactor would have to buy the land and gift it to the school, Peace said.

He argued the project could add jobs to San Diego's tax base.

"The city will make more money over time converting this property to a shared park and university use than they would ever get by selling the property and getting whatever money they got out of the land value," Peace said.

A university could put classrooms, labs, and a smaller stadium there without worrying so much about profits, he said.

University control of the development removes the time and profit pressure off efforts to develop the area.

"If you don't have that command and control capacity of the university, you're just not going to be able to organize the capital because every financing entity wants to know what plan B is," Peace said.

City residents would have to approve the idea and a benefactor would be needed to buy the land and gift it to a school, but Peace said that's possible. He said creating jobs on the site could be a huge financial boost for the city over the long term.

San Diego State is an obvious first choice, but Peace said the idea could include other schools.

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