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Earthquakes New Stadium Gets a Face, But Not Funds
San Jose Mercury News, September 21st, 2009 4:15PM

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The San Jose Earthquakes have yet to procure funding for their new stadium, but the team has still unveiled architectural renderings of its proposed 15,000-seat soccer stadium on a lot near Mineta San Jose International Airport. The drawings of the $60 million proposed project show a European-style, horseshoe-shaped stadium that hopes to have the closes sight lines in Major League Soccer. "It is one more step, not a guarantee we will be there," Earthquakes owner Lew Wolff said in an interview last week.

The Earthquakes' plans to open the stadium by 2012 have been derailed because of the economic downturn. Wolff declined to predict when the project would be completed, saying it would take about two years from the moment they start. Meanwhile, executive vice president David Alioto aims to show fans that the team is serious about keeping soccer in San Jose. "The year hasn't been perfect but we're doing a lot of things to improve," he said of the team's poor performance on the field and the stadium delay. "Keep coming out and have faith in us." The team plans to reduce ticket prices next year to help grow the fan base and possibly attract more sponsors who could help offset the price of a new stadium.

But Wolff says he realizes that it will take a quality on-field product - more than spiffy new digs - to attract a loyal and larger fan base. It would be unwise "to say everything will be fine with a new stadium," he said. The Earthquakes (5-12-6) look destined to finish last place in the West for the second straight season in MLS.

 

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