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San Jose Stadium Plans Boosted by Economic Analysis

The San Jose Mercury News has the latest on Earthquakes owner Lew Wolff's ongoing quest to secure the blessing of the city for a new soccer stadium. Wolff wants to rezone industrial and retail land in Edenvale, Calif. and turn it into 1,300 homes. The sale of that land would then help him finance a $100 million stadium. The Merc says the plans reached a crucial stage on Tuesday when the San Jose City council approved an economic analysis of the project, which said the new stadium would infuse $62.3 million a year into the city's economy.
There's still one major setback. According to the analysis, the San Jose Redevelopment Agency would rake in between $5.4 and $6.5 million annually if the stadium goes through, but the new homes would suck money out of the city's general fund, which would have to pay for things like police officers and firefighters. The city would also lose sales tax revenue by replacing the commercial property with residential, and the redevelopment dollars couldn't be used to offset the loss to the general fund.
Bob Brownstein, a policy director for the think tank Working Partnerships USA, urged the city to impose a fee on tickets to temper the hit taken by the general fund. "Even $2 a ticket would produce an impact on the general fund equal to half of a serious shopping center, and that would make the project a win-win," Brownstein said.

Read the whole story at San Jose Mercury News »

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