SDSU And Soccer League Fight For Qualcomm Stadium

Zachary Daudet, Staff Writer

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With the absence of the San Diego Chargers, 166 acres of valuable land that once was known as Qualcomm Stadium in Mission Valley is up for grabs. Two entities: San Diego State University (SDSU) and Major League Soccer (MLS) are battling to win the hearts and minds — and votes — of residents in San Diego to get one of their respective plans for revitalizing the site, approved.

 

San Diego State football has a history of playing at Qualcomm Stadium; they’ve been there for many years. In fact their football team has earned a big fan base amongst the city’s football fans.  SDSU wants to turn the lot into a 35,000-seat stadium for football games. In addition, they’d like to expand their campus by adding student housing units along with SDSU office buildings. It would cost about $3 billion and the university plans to pay for the stadium without raising student fees or tapping state funds but will cost taxpayers money.

 

MLS has formed a group called Soccer City that wants to locate a professional soccer team in San Diego. They think San Diego is a perfect place for a MLS team, as soccer’s popularity has increased in the city over the last few years. Michael Stone, leader of Soccer City said, “San Diego is a soccer town and deserves a Major League soccer team. Soccer is the world’s most popular sport and we’d like nothing more than to bring it, with all its excitement and pageantry to one of the world’s greatest cities.” Their proposal would consist of 4,800 homes, 2 stadiums, parks and commercial space. It will cost about $4 billion and they say will not cost taxpayers any money.

 

Soccer City has proposed to share a stadium with SDSU because both of the plans are very similar, each stadium will seat about 35,000 people and have similar outside features. But SDSU rejected the proposals saying, “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.”

 

As you may suspect, the citizens of San Diego have very mixed opinions about the two plans. SDSU football fans have been watching their team play at the old stadium for years but with a growing interest in soccer, an MLS stadium seems like a popular option also. When news hit Clairemont High School students, people had different stances as well.

 

Peyton Hijar, freshman soccer player, said, “I am in favor of Soccer City because there is a bigger soccer fan base in San Diego than other cities, and it wouldn’t cost any money for taxpayers.”

 

Jayden Cruz, senior JV soccer player and varsity football star said, “I’d like the SDSU football stadium because no one knows about the MLS. I think that most people would rather watch college football than soccer.”

 

SDSU football season ticket holder Justin Rice stated, “San Diego State has been here so long I think it would be nice to give them their own stadium.”

 

As you can see there are many opposing views on what to do with the old stadium. San Diego City Council member voted unanimously to send the SoccerCity proposal and SDSU proposal to voters in November of 2018. Both sides are pushing hard to advertise their plan but in the end it will be up to the voters of San Diego to decide what stadium they want.

 

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