49ers, Santa Clara close in on stadium agreement - Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal:
An agreement between the 49'ers, Cedar Fair and the City of Santa Clara could be made official in only two short weeks from today (April 3rd, 2009). The negotiations hav been over a new 68,500-seat niners football stadium that would be located on part of the parking lot area of America's Great America. For those who may not know, Cedar Fair owns the theme park, and is leasing the property from the city.
The price tag projected for the arena is $916 million ..with possibly $160 million of the cost being share by Santa Clara, thru redevelopment funds. The recession may reduce the city's funding capacity to some degree. Construction would begin in 2010 and the team is hoping to have the stadium open in time for the 2012 NFL season. The recession may hamper this too ..setting the opening back to as late as 2014.
Nevertheless, it looks like the deal will be made and the project commence! It's a win-win-win-win scenerio. The stadium would mean 850 full-time jobs at the stadium alone, and the city would realize an annual sales-tax revenue increase of $650 grand.
Cedar Fair would foreseeably realize an significantly higher attendance, and additional profits from guest spending inside Great America. Economic benefits for the city are estimated to be $85 million ..the county, $164 million. Higher revenues for Cedar Fair would translate into more quality attractions for Great America goers, and a better overall park. Of course, the 49'ers would benefit from a brand new facility, while enjoying lower overhead as compared with the "city by the bay".
Historically speaking, a theme park and a professional sports team occupying the same property is an exciting first. The only big puzzle to me in all of this concerns the new name for the 49'ers. Will they be called the Santa Clara 49'ers, the Cedar Fair 49'ers, or the California Great American 49'ers.