There was a touch of history to the first phase of the San Jose Earthquakes' stadium project -- an M2 Bradley carried members of the Earthquakes and a worker to the the FMC plant that was once used to assemble the Bradley Fighting Vehicle and that a demolition man began ripping into on Thursday to make way for the Earthquakes' proposed $60 million stadium.
A crowd of about 250 fans, community leaders and team officials was on hand in Santa Clara, next to the Mineta San Jose International Airport, for the ceremonial start to the demolition project.
Earthquakes President Dave Kaval said the symbolic gesture showed "the transformation from an old manufacturing base to more of an entertainment district." After the factory is demolished, the site is cleaned up and a building permit secured, the Quakes can begin work on their stadium.
"Built out over time, this site will increase property tax revenues, add jobs and a soccer venue for sports fans, especially youth,'' said City Councilman Pierluigi Oliverio of the project that includes a training center already in use by the Quakes.