San Diego Chargers announce plan for downtown stadium and convention center

The project will be funded primarily by a tax increase on hotel stays.

April 01, 2016 |
San Diego Chargers announce plan for downtown stadium and convention center

Qualcomm Stadium, the San Diego Chargers' current home. Photo: SD Dirk/Creative Commons

The San Diego Chargers released a 110-page report regarding details of a $1.8 billion plan for a new football stadium and convention center in downtown San Diego.

The stadium and convention center will be funded by a 4% tax increase on hotel stays. The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the proposed hotel tax rate, 16.5%, will be one of the country’s highest. 

But the rate will spare taxpayers of a large financial burden. Funding will come from the hotel tax increase and $650 million from the Chargers and the NFL.

The Chargers will sign a 30-year lease and a non-relocation agreement, and they will be responsible for any construction cost overruns and future stadium improvements.

The new report is the first step toward gaining 70,000 signatures by June so that the plan can be included on California ballots this November. 

A final architectural plan has not been determined. Options include building the convention center either underneath or next to the stadium. Dubbed the "convadium," it will be built near Petco Park, where the San Diego Padres of MLB play.

Qualcomm Stadium, the Chargers' current 70,000-seat home, was built in 1967 and is the NFL’s fifth-oldest stadium. The team desires a new home, either in San Diego or elsewhere.

Los Angeles has been a possibility for the last several years. This winter, the NFL approved the St. Louis Rams’ proposal for a new $3 billion stadium in Inglewood (just outside of L.A.), and the league rejected a joint stadium venture in the city for the Chargers and Oakland Raiders. The Chargers have a year to decide whether they want to move to Los Angeles and share a stadium with the Rams.

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