Best in the Southland

Ed Roski presents the LA Stadium

by Jennifer McLain @ sgvtribune.com

An environmental impact report issued Wednesday calls an undeveloped 592-acre parcel near the junction of the 57 and 60 freeways in Industry the best place in Southern California for a professional football stadium.

The 800-page report was prepared for Industry by a Costa Mesa research firm. It reviewed the plans of billionaire developer Ed Roski to build an $800 million National Football League stadium.

Roski is head of Industry-based Majestic Realty Co., part-owner of the NBA's Lakers and NHL's Kings, and co-owner of Staples Center. He had originally planned to construct a retail and entertainment complex on the site. He switched gears earlier this year in hopes he could bring the NFL back to Los Angeles in time for the 2009 season.

The report ranked the Industry site ahead of the Rose Bowl, the Coliseum and the parking lot of Angel Stadium as a location for a pro football stadium. It also found the project would bring air quality problems, noise issues, traffic jams and increased demands for public services to the East San Gabriel Valley.

The public has 45 days to respond to the report, which is available at Industry City Hall.

Industry's mayor praised the stadium proposal on Wednesday.

"Everyone I have spoken to loves the idea of an NFL stadium in the San Gabriel Valley," mayor Dave Perez said. "But they also have the same concern: traffic."

The report is a supplement to a 2004 environmental report that examined the impact of Roski's original proposal for mixed retail and office buildings at the location.

It looked specifically at the effect of an NFL stadium and sought input from several government agencies, including school and sanitation districts, city councils and transportation agencies.

Roski wants to build a 75,000-seat stadium with practice fields, training facilities, and team offices. His proposal also lists a sports medical center as well as restaurants, entertainment facilities, offices and a parking lot to accommodate all usages.

Despite projecting an increase in greenhouse gasses, Wednesday's addendum concludes that a stadium on the site is a better alternative than the office and retail complex proposed in 2004.

"Emissions generated by the revised Plan of Development would be lower than those generated by the 2004 (plan)," the report notes. "In addition, the revised Plan of Development would result in a reduction of .. building square footage (and) therefore would generate less GHG emissions over the course of construction activities."

The report also studied more than 80 key intersections near the site.

It concludes that the commercial center proposed in 2004 would generate 92,056 daily vehicle trips. But the stadium at the site on a typical Monday night game would only generate 69,744 vehicle trips.

The EIR is split into 14 sections and includes nine appendices. Among the sections are reports on geology, water quality, noise, air quality, aesthetics and transportation. The appendices include a letter from Diamond Bar's planning director that expresses concern about a neighborhood that borders the site.

A letter from Clement Lau, a planner with the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation, expresses concern that games will affect attendance at a nearby golf course.

The report also notes that local tribal elders were contacted in case artifacts are discovered during construction.

The environmental report is one of the many steps Roski must go through if he wants to bring an NFL team to Los Angeles, which his business partner said last week could happen as soon as next year.

Majestic Realty vice president John Semcken said that a team would play at the Rose Bowl until Roski's stadium is completed in 2011.

Officials representing San Gabriel Valley cities said they will hold off supporting the project until they have an opportunity to review the report.

Original Article: sgvtribune.com

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