Chargers Chairman Dean Spanos, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, Chargers legend LaDainian Tomlinson and Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers join the public in downtown to rally and kick off the Initiative and discuss the stadium opportunity at hand for the future of San Diego.Paid for by Citizens for Sports, Entertainment and Tourism, with major funding by Chargers Football Company, LLC.
America's Finest City.
America's Finest Team.
America's Finest Facility.
That was the sentiment at an historic day for San Diego as nearly 4,000 citizens joined the Chargers to kick off the signature-gathering campaign for the Citizens' Initiative. The proposed project would revitalize the East Village downtown by building a modern multi-use stadium and convention facility.
Numerous dignitaries helped crystalize the full scope and vision of the project, including Chargers Chairman Dean Spanos, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, legendary running back LaDainian Tomlinson, quarterback Philip Rivers and Congressmen Scott Peters, Juan Vargas and Darrell Issa.
While the stadium would be the new state of the art home for the Chargers, it would also be the type of civic asset befitting America's Finest City. In fact, Goodell weighed in on the types of events the NFL alone would look to house in the new complex, including future Super Bowls, Pro Bowls, NFL Drafts, league conferences and more.
"That is the beauty of this facility; it is more than a stadium," Goodell said. "It has an ability to host other events like the Draft, and that is something that obviously as an NFL city we'd love to do (in San Diego). We're making all of those events bigger and more impactful. I think they can have an impact on this community, and I think we're going to make this successful."
Spanos echoed those sentiments when describing the conversations he's had with the league about other opportunities the project can have for the NFL.
"Downtown here, there is the benefit of the convention center tied in with the stadium," he said. "There are cost efficiencies that both will be able to take advantage of, and that's something that will be used hopefully 200 days-plus a year…. I'm really encouraged by the fact that (Goodell) is going to support the possibility of a Super Bowl here. I'm confident that the owners will support us for a Super Bowl here (because with) the past three they had a great experience. But also, possibly a Pro Bowl, the Draft; there is no commitment for the Pro Bowl or the Draft in the future to any one city, so it's open. It would be a great thing for San Diego."
The NFL is one of many entities that would be able to use the multi-use facility throughout the year, highlighting the potential the project has as a civic asset. The ability to house all types of events and conventions is why proposed renderings of the project include a roof over the stadium portion. While the designs are subject to change, Congressman Issa helped explain the project's overall potential.
"We truly live in the greatest city that anyone could choose to live in. Great cities have to dream big. They have to have the leadership to believe they could do more, and that's San Diego as I know it….Even though there's politicians up here today supporting this initiative, what we are saying is we believe that when San Diego voters are asked to support their great city, with great dreams of improvement of the city, time and time again, they make the right choice. So today, we the people are telling the politicians we believe in our city, we believe in our futures, we believe in this world-class stadium!"
Closing out an inspirational 25-minute program, Rivers spoke not only about what the facility would mean for the Bolts, but for the city as a whole. He also stressed the symbiotic bond between the Chargers and the community.
"It's easy for me to talk about San Diego because I love San Diego," he said. "My family and I are so thankful to be able to call San Diego home for 12 years ….What really was very clear last year to me was what our team means to the community, and what the community means to the team is way more than what happens between the lines. We're going to win a lot of football games this year and the next, but it is way more than that. I saw Rolf Benirschke a little while ago, and I think about the blood drive and the many other things that ties the community to the team and how special that bond is….I know that there is a lot of work to get done, and there are so many people doing so much work and there's so much yet to go, and maybe I look at it a little simpler, but it just makes sense, right? So let's get it done! I hope I'm still around to play in it, but let's get it done together!"
Paid for by Citizens for Sports, Entertainment and Tourism, with major funding by Chargers Football Company, LLC.
Renderings of the architect's design vision.This is a conceptual design intended to convey the Chargers' vision for what the stadium and convention center expansion could look like. The final design will be the result of a design process conducted with the Joint Powers Authority, the City or other governmental entity designated by the City to coordinate the construction of the stadium and convention center expansion, if the Initiative is approved by the voters. Paid for by Citizens for Sports, Entertainment and Tourism, with major funding by Chargers Football Company, LLC.