Since the beginning, proponents of SoccerCity have touted a state-of-the-art, multi-use sports stadium as the defining feature of the development, which could accommodate not only professional soccer and collegiate football, but also double as a music and entertainment venue. That would be phenomenal for San Diego, if only it were even remotely true.
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In reality, the fine print of the SoccerCity initiative only states that the investors need to build a joint-use stadium, but the stadium does not have to be able to accommodate college or NFL football. And, if the stadium isn’t built within seven years, the property reverts back to the City of San Diego, but the City must continue to honor any leases executed by FS Investors during those seven years, and the sublessees are not required to build the stadium or River Park.
In other words, FS Investors could decide not to build the stadium, but could lease the rest of the land and then profit off it, without ever building a stadium at all.
Adding insult to injury, FS Investors has said repeatedly that a soccer stadium must be complete by 2020 to accommodate their new MLS team, but the fine print of the SoccerCity plans say they don’t have to complete construction of the stadium until 2025 and the finer print says they have seven years to build the stadium without specifying an exact date. In the meantime, the initiative leaves the City on the hook for all costs related to the existing stadium until it’s demolished, which won’t happen until after the new stadium is completed. That equates to more than a hundred million dollars – your tax dollars – to cover maintenance fees, bond payments and other costs for a building that is going to be bulldozed.