San Francisco 49ers Respond to Speculation about Economy's Impact on Stadium Plans
A recent news story quoted investment bankers painting a doomsday scenario for the San Francisco 49ers' ability to move forward with plans for a new stadium in Santa Clara as a result of the current economic climate.
The 49ers do not agree with this assessment. Although current economic conditions create new factors that need to be addressed as part of our planning process, the project continues to progress on multiple fronts. The City of Santa Clara's Environmental Impact Report is well underway, we are continuing to work with the City on a term sheet, and we expect to have a date set for a ballot in Santa Clara soon.
As to the impact of the economy, at this point we are still in the entitlement and approval stage of the project. Once we move into the financing phase, we expect the credit markets will have recovered, and we will be able to finance the project. An expected positive impact of the economic downturn is the decrease in the cost of materials, but it is too early to speculate as to how that may impact the final cost of the stadium.
Although our opening day target may need to be adjusted as part of the term sheet, the 49ers ownership group continues to remain committed to building a new NFL stadium in Santa Clara and is spending significant resources to make this goal a reality. We also continue to see support for this project in the community given the positive economic impact it will bring to local businesses, including thousands of new jobs.
Will the 49ers share the stadium with another professional sports team?
This is not something we are focused on. If at some point it makes sense to share the stadium with another professional sports team and a workable option emerges, we would be willing to consider it. But that is not our current objective.
Keep in mind that the stadium is designed to accommodate a number of different sporting and special events. It can be used for college bowl games, soccer events and the Santa Clara Convention Center can use it in conjunction with their special events.