SAN DIEGO — A spokesman for Mayor Kevin Faulconer said Monday the city was not surprised by news that the Chargers will apply to move to the Los Angeles area, but said the city will continue to work with the NFL to keep the team in San Diego.
“Given that the Chargers have been working on their L.A. plan since 2013, this isn’t a surprise,” Faulconer spokesman Matt Awbrey told City News Service. “We look forward to our continued talks with the NFL on San Diego’s stadium plan.”
Chargers executive Mark Fabiani went on a San Diego-area sports radio station over the weekend and said the team will apply with the league to move to the Los Angeles area, because the St. Louis Rams and Oakland Raiders are also poised to do so.
“At this point, yes, because there’s no sign that the other team or teams are not going to file,” Fabiani told XEPRS “the Mighty 10-90” radio.
The Chargers have been working with the Raiders on a plan to build a joint stadium in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson.
Fabiani did not return a request for comment to City News Service.
The St. Louis Rams are planning a stadium at the former Hollywood Park race track site in Inglewood.
“Everyone assumes all three teams will file, and in that case we can’t afford to lose our market in Los Angeles and Orange County,” Fabiani said.
Fabiani is a former Los Angeles deputy mayor and Hollywood Hills resident, and has been the point man on the Chargers’ stadium issues.
The Chargers have been asking for about 15 years for a replacement for aging Qualcomm Stadium, and city officials have determined the current site in San Diego’s Mission Valley is the best location for a new facility.
The Chargers are also monitoring a citizens’ initiative to commit the city of San Diego to a new San Diego stadium on the bay, south of the Center City.
The initiative would be aimed for the June 2016 ballot.
The National Football League will host a public forum at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Spreckels Theatre, 121 Broadway, to hear from Charger fans and the San Diego community.
NFL owners must approve any team relocation. The three teams are expected to make their formal relocation applications early next year.