With the Chargers downtown stadium search continuing to move quickly, I wanted to address a couple of issues that readers and commenters are raising.

  • Last Friday, team special counsel and stadium point man Mark Fabiani told me the stadium’s capacity would be 64,000. Commenters and readers noted that the NFL requires 70,000 seats for a stadium to host the Super Bowl.

I asked Fabiani about that issue this week and he said stadium plans include expandable temporary seating to reach the Super Bowl threshold.

“It’s designed to be expanded,” Fabiani said. “It’s not like you’re setting up a bunch of folding chairs.”

Expandable seating is also part of the San Francisco 49ers plan for a new stadium in Santa Clara. Its capacity is 68,500 seats with potential expansion to 75,000.

Another reason for the Chargers to build 64,000-seat stadium, Fabiani said, would be to keep construction costs down.

“It’s pretty much a direct and proportional reduction in cost the fewer seats that you have,” he said.

  • In last Friday’s post, I mentioned briefly a geological fault line that’s located in the Tailgate Park portion of the stadium site. Fabiani said he was unconcerned.

But the fault line was part of the reason the task force that examined the city’s Convention Center rejected Tailgate Park as a potential expansion site.

A task force consultant, Tucker Sadler, explained the problem at a June meeting.

The one thing we found in looking at this is there is a fault that goes right through the site. It actually severs the site. While we thought we had a contiguous site, what we have is a site that’s divided in half. There’s also some very large culverts that run right through Tailgate Park making it a little more difficult to work through.

A slide showing the fault line is on page 13 of this document.

I brought up the matter to Fabiani again and he said the team has been aware of the fault line since it began looking at the site in January.

“It’s the first thing we checked,” he said.

The team’s architects are convinced they could design a stadium around it, he added.


Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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