Candlestick Point plan "won't work"
says 49ers' MacNeil
49ers Chief Financial Officer Larry MacNeil
By Emmett Berg, Bay City News Service
November 21, 2006
SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) - A San Francisco 49ers executive
told the city's Board of Supervisors today that a plan for a new
stadium and mixed-use development at Candlestick Point was "spectacular"
but relied on a massive parking garage that would "terrify
"The site plan is spectacular," said Larry MacNeil,
chief financial officer for the 49ers. "It just does not
work for a NFL stadium."
MacNeil's comments followed an extensive presentation by city
officials and the developer selected to work with the team on
a stadium replacement plan, Miami-based Lennar Corp.
Recently the team announced plans to focus on moving the team
to Santa Clara.
The illustrated talk by architects, consultants and engineers
evoked a remade Candlestick Point that would add amenities, cachet
and recreational opportunities to the impoverished Bayview area.
The plan includes construction of 6,500 units of housing, a Main
Street of retail shops and restaurants and a revitalized Candlestick
Point State Park including naturalized ponds, environmental demonstration
areas, open space, reflecting pools, "dramatic mounds"
for viewing opportunities, a bio-filtration pond, and integration
to the historic character of the Bayview community.
Yet a centerpiece of the plan is a 10,000-stall parking garage
that would have a rooftop tailgating area for 1,500 vehicles.
The garage would be among the largest in the nation, and MacNeil
said the team in its outreach to fans had learned they were nervous
about such a large concentration of cars.
And during one year of construction under the proposed plan,
some 8,000 vehicles would have to be parked offsite with fans
bused to the stadium.
"We're looking to break new ground on a stadium, but we're
not looking to terrify our fans," MacNeil said.
Several times during today's hearing at City Hall, supervisors
mentioned that the parking garage could be altered.
But MacNeil said downsizing the parking garage would reduce the
amount of land available for housing, and uncertainties over the
sale of 6,500 units of housing meant that there was a chance that
$800 million in needed infrastructure improvements would take
Concerns over the parking garage and housing components added
too much risk to the stadium project, MacNeil said. "It depends
on Lennar's ability to sell homes at a profit."
"In our opinion, this plan doesn't work," MacNeil said.
"We're happy to hear other plans, but this one doesn't work."
Supervisors expressed willingness to continue talks with the
team and hope to find ways to convince the 49ers to stay. The
team's lease continues through the 2007 season, and the team has
the option to renew for up to 15 more years.
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