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MLS Expansion: Opposition to San Diego plan mounts
by Paul Kennedy, May 18th, 2017 4:40AM
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TAGS:  mls


FS Investors has a plan for the Soccer City development of San Diego's Mission Valley, centered around replacing Qualcomm Stadium, that includes the construction of a 30,000-seat stadium and could go to city voters for approval in November. But talks with San Diego State to go in on the deal have broken off, prompting the university to request that other plans for the development be considered.

The 166-acre Soccer City plan is more than just a stadium plan for an MLS and college football stadium, but it includes housing, commercial development and parking, as well as park land.

San Diego State acknowledged that it had been in talks with the MLS group over a possible partnership on the stadium for the Aztecs, who play at Qualcomm Stadium, the former home of the departed Chargers,

"Unfortunately," the school said in a statement, "a fair, equitable deal that would provide opportunity for the long-term success of SDSU and Aztec football, as well as a transparent deal for the citizens of San Diego, could not be reached. Recently, Mayor Kevin Faulconer reached out to SDSU in an attempt to facilitate a deal on behalf of SDSU with FS Investors. SDSU reiterated our offer to purchase land and to provide our fair share of infrastructure costs, but still no agreement could be reached."

Nick Stone, the MLS group's project manager, issued a statement that San Diego State's move was a "sad chapter in the saga of departing university leadership moving the goal posts. Unbelievably, they continue to walk away from people trying to help them. It's clear this decision will jeopardize Aztec football."

Without Qualcomm Stadium, SDSU has no long-term home for its football team. The only other alternative is baseball stadium Petko Park, but it is not clear that it is a long-term solution for Aztec football.

The battle over Mission Valley has become a huge fight in San Diego. The San Diego Union-Tribune reported two weeks ago that FS Investors has spent about $1.5 million promoting its bid, while rival developers H.G. Fenton Company & Sudberry Properties have spent almost $600,000 to defeat the soccer development.

In a Facebook post, Landon Donovan, who has joined the FS Investors bid group, said he respected San Diego State's efforts but insisted the land shouldn't be given away to the university.

  1. Quarterback TD
    commented on: May 18, 2017 at 11:40 a.m.
    No wonder many pro clubs leave San Diego.. it's a political mess.. At this stage this may get rejected because of so many different entities vying for attention.
  1. James Thomas
    commented on: May 18, 2017 at 1:07 p.m.
    San Diego is a bad expansion target for other reasons as well. Much like Miami, there is a ton of things to do there and the fan bases are indifferent. Soccer is rich there but that doesn't translate. I used to live in San Diego but I know the area. The less said about SDSU the better. They have always been a presumptuous entity that thinks they are bigger than their britches. They are NOT a tpp 25 program, never will be and have crappy fans in many ways. MLS needs their owners to to own their SSS stadiums and control revenue streams. Nothing less. But presumptuous and arrogant SDSU would never agree to that. Its time for MLS to move on.

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