Officials to discuss 49ers stadium

September 2, 2008 9:50:55 PM PDT
After months of quietly plotting forward, the public once again has a chance to speak up on the proposal to build a 49er stadium in Santa Clara. One public hearing took place late this afternoon and another is slated for Tuesday night.

The 49'ers and the city of Santa Clara had an all star line up for a ribbon cutting at Buchser Middle School with the opening of the 49er Fitness Zone.

The $70,000 facility will serve students at Buchser and youth football players.

At the same time, a meeting was taking place at City Hall marking the next step in the 49ers' push to build a much bigger project. The team dreams of building a 68,000 seat stadium on what is now an overflow parking area for Great America.

This scoping meeting is part of the process for putting together an environmental impact report (EIR). Noise and traffic were the two biggest concerns that had people lining up to speak.

"For example, 101 will have increased congestion, Central Expressway will have increased congestion, El Camino will have increased congestion," says Sunnyvale resident Robert Hoop.

People also urged the economic impact report to address possible solutions.

"How we can use mass transit to reduce parking and circulation around the stadium," says James Rowen Santa Clara resident.

The economic impact report will not address stadium financing, but opponents argue that the allocation of $136 million in city redevelopment money should be included in the report.

"There also a more general concerns that are covered by the EIR in term of quality of life and spending city resources and that's where my particular concern lies in terms of whether this is a good use of city resources. 1:12," says Michele Ryan, who opposes the stadium proposal.

The 49ers delivered one touchdown Tuesday, but building a $916 million dollar stadium in Santa Clara will take a Super Bowl performance.

"Most estimates are that the EIRs takes about 12 to 24 months. It's tough to put a finger on it and tell you all the questions that are being raised," says 49er spokesperson Pete Hillan.

The team wants to be in their new stadium by the start of their 2012 season so its not just about the money ? time is also a major factor.


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