Chargers, Raiders secure land deal in Carson

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SAN DIEGO - One day after San Diego officials unveiled a financial plan aimed at keeping the Chargers in town, the Chargers and Oakland Raiders have completed a land transaction in Carson.

The complex land deal for the proposed stadium shared by the Chargers and Raiders in Carson closed Tuesday morning after months of closed-door negotiations, Los Angeles Times reported.

The deed for 157 acres adjacent to the 405 freeway transferred from Carson Marketplace, which had previously planned to build a mixed-use development on the site, to a joint powers authority controlled by Carson.

Eleven acres transferred, as well, from Carson Marketplace to Carson Holdings, a newly-created company jointly owned by the Chargers and Raiders.

Mark Fabiani, point man on stadium issues for the Chargers, declined to release the purchase price for the 11 acres. Fabiani said that Carson would retain control of the 157 acres if the $1.7-billion stadium isn’t built.

Earlier this month, Carson authorized $50.5 million in bonds to finish the cleanup of the former landfill site.

Fabiani said that California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control has consented to the land transfer.

On Monday, an advisory group appointed by San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer unveiled a proposed $1.4 billion financing plan for a 65,000-seat stadium for the Chargers near the team's existing home at Qualcomm Stadium.

Fabiani said Monday the team would review the financial plan.

Backers of the Carson stadium collected thousands of signatures to get the stadium proposal directly before the City Council, bypassing the need to complete extensive environmental reviews.

A similar tactic was employed in Inglewood, where the City Council voted unanimously Feb. 24 to approve an initiative allowing for construction of an 80,000-seat stadium planned by St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke at the former Hollywood Park racetrack site. Although Kroenke is behind the project, the Rams have not announced any intention of moving back to the Los Angeles area.

An NFL team has not played in the Los Angeles area since 1994, when the Raiders and Rams relocated.

According to a Carson staff report, the 157-acre site -- located on a former landfill -- is in the Boulevards at the South Bay Specific Plan area, which calls for a mix of commercial, retail, hotel and housing projects. The council's vote last month essentially created a "stadium overlay,'' which allows the stadium as an alternative use of the property.

The report also notes that the Boulevards plan "has already undergone a significant amount of detailed land use, planning and environmental analysis, and a certified Environmental Impact Report for the Specific Plan was adopted by the city in 2006.''

Despite city approval of the plans, the project was never developed due to the recession, according to the report.

In addition to the stadium, the latest project would also include a 350- room hotel, 850,000 square feet of commercial, entertainment and other uses, and a minimum of 10,000 parking spaces.

Read more at Los Angeles Times.

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