Developer Drops Plan For 18,000 Seat Soccer Stadium In Downtown Concord

May 13, 2020 23:37 pm · 50 comments

A proposed downtown Concord soccer stadium project, which included plans for a convention center, a hotel and housing, is now off the table, its developer and city leaders said Wednesday.

John Montagh, Concord’s economic development manager, said the Walnut Creek-based Hall Equities Group notified the city last week it isn’t moving forward with the initial exclusive negotiation agreement for the project. The uncertainties of the era of COVID-19, and how that could affect public gatherings, was cited as a key reason.

“Based upon how the world has changed quite a bit, it’s become problematic (for Hall) to proceed with the project at this point,” said Montagh, who noted that as of Wednesday morning the city had not yet received formal notification from Hall Equities confirming the pullout.

Mark Hall, president and CEO of Hall Equities Group, said Wednesday while the uncertainties of a world with the COVID-19 coronavirus would have delayed and complicated the project in any event, other factors in dealing with the city cropped up over time that also helped drive the decision to end the project – at least in Concord.

“I’m not really sure what Concord wants to do,” Hall said. “We spent a lot of money and good faith, but it didn’t work out.”

“Even if we’d been on track (with the city) it would be a couple of years before breaking ground,” Hall said.

In May 2018, the Concord City Council approved “advanced exploration” of the concept of the possibility of an 18,000-seat soccer stadium, and a convention center and hotel – maybe more than one – on a long-vacant parcel downtown near the police station and the Concord BART station. The land is bordered by Galindo Street on the west, Laguna Street on the south, Oak Street on the north and the BART tracks and station parking lot on the east.

Hall Equities affiliate Hall Sports Ventures in late 2017 bought an expansion franchise in the professional United Soccer League. The Concord stadium would have been the team’s home, Hall said. The stadium could have hosted other sports, as well as concerts and other events.

There was even some talk early on about selling the Concord Pavilion and using those proceeds to help fund the downtown stadium project.

The concerts that would have played the Concord Pavilion, the reasoning was, would now play the downtown stadium.

Hall said Wednesday he still owns the franchise for a United Soccer League team, which doesn’t yet exist. The franchise, he said, is exclusive for Contra Costa, Alameda and Santa Clara counties, and for the
southern sections of Napa and Solano counties.

“We’re shopping in that general neighborhood” for a place to build a similar project, Hall said.

collegecollage May 14, 2020 at 12:12 AM

That was a terrible idea. Glad the corporate greed monsters decided their opportunity to make life more awful for the surrounding community was no longer worth their time.

Bob Foo May 14, 2020 at 1:01 AM

“I’m not really sure what Concord wants to do…”

The lack of awareness is astounding.

How about you accept the fact that nobody wanted what you were trying to sell, and you lost? Yes, you spent money investigating the feasibility of your development, you discovered that the development would not be feasible, and that’s the end. So what you can do now is get out of Concord, and don’t let the door hit your rear end on the way out.

Smee May 14, 2020 at 2:23 AM

Hooray!!!

Jackie Aldridge May 14, 2020 at 4:58 AM

The economy is unpredictable. Developing is a chancy venture in the best of times. Hall decided not to go ahead with the project. That’s fine. I would have rioted if the city were to trade a good place like Concord Pavilion for a bad deal like a downtown and uncomfortable to use soccer stadium.

JazzMan May 14, 2020 at 5:37 AM

I understand, what with the effects of COVID and such, why, but BOOO! Not happy at all. Was SO looking forward to a new soccer stadium. Sac and SJ are not a bad drive, but would’ve loved to have one closer. 😢😢😢

Pyrrhus May 14, 2020 at 9:00 AM

I’m with you. I was looking forward to going to games locally with friends. Hopefully they find a place not too far. I do want to check out the Oakland Roots in the future. They have one of the best designs in all of US soccer.

Stoptheinsanity May 14, 2020 at 6:29 AM

Very good news in an otherwise somber time. We don’t need more traffic here.

Anonymous May 14, 2020 at 6:31 AM

I can’t think of a more horrible location. What were they thinking? And someone thought it was a good idea to sell the Concord Pavilion to help fund this insanity? Lol!

NavyProud35 May 14, 2020 at 6:41 AM

I remember people being asked about this at Todos Stantos farmer’s market and the response was overwhelming unpopular.

I wonder what the plan was for parking to support that many people.

Could you just imagine the congestion near the police department on venue days? What were they thinking?

Had no idea they were proposing moving concerts there from the Concord Pavilion.

I’m totally okay with the proposed venue being abandoned.

Jessica May 14, 2020 at 4:58 PM

I’m not a fan of the stadium either, but take into consideration the demographic of people shopping at a farmers market — not many are going to really be into organized sports, much less freaking soccer.

Mongoose May 14, 2020 at 6:54 AM

Darn…now I will not be able to watch paint dry along with 18,000 other people.

JazzMan May 14, 2020 at 9:35 AM

Much more exciting than NBA (based on last attendance rankings), and it wouldn’t be the #1 sport in the world if it was so boring. Obviously you’ve never been to a game.

Martinezmike May 14, 2020 at 7:22 AM

Maybe they can build a re-education camp, for those who don’t believe in the Covids. Teach them mask wearing, hand washing, social distancing, and proper respect for gubmint authority.

Concordejet May 14, 2020 at 9:54 AM

You mean traffic school for violating traffic law. Okay how about Covid School for violating Covid law for not wearing mask, SIPing, blaming the shut down. Over reacting. Yeah instead of soccer field I support Covid School would even be better.

rings4me May 14, 2020 at 7:51 AM

Finally some good news today. if CARDENAS market could not make it, the developers must have realized that they WAY over estimated the demographics of that area!? Monument is already grid locked. could you imagine how bad it would become with not real Local freeway access. What the What was Concord thinking? geez

Sam Malone May 14, 2020 at 7:57 AM

Glad that it is off the table. Horrible location as traffic sucks in town already. Better it would have been located further away from center of city limits. Those funds are much more needed elsewhere.

Tuca May 14, 2020 at 8:14 AM

Bad idea more traffic for the down town…no…😡😡

Chuckie’s Wife May 14, 2020 at 8:39 AM

Glad this one is done. I wonder what the next terrible idea will be for that location.

Sign from Above May 14, 2020 at 8:47 AM

The only benefit to come out of COVID-19

HooHaa May 14, 2020 at 8:53 AM

YESSSSSSSSSSS

SF oh May 14, 2020 at 8:55 AM

Good news! Now pack up your plans to ruin our city and Get Out!

94519 May 14, 2020 at 11:41 AM

Amen.

Old Timer May 14, 2020 at 9:06 AM

Make a dog park.Concord is crowded enough we can’t even lease the empty buildings now.And for housing turn the empty property on Oliver Rd into Livable housing.Wake up Concord City Council.

Peter Johnson May 14, 2020 at 9:09 AM

At least the fear-mongering Covid19 LIE was good for something. Well done fake virus!

The Fearless Spectator May 14, 2020 at 9:09 AM

I suggest they head east.

Thunderdome May 14, 2020 at 9:10 AM

Wasn’t this site planned to be a JFK campus? Now they are gone too. Maybe it is cursed.

MattfromConcord May 14, 2020 at 9:10 AM

From the book of stupid ideas:
Chapter 1
Page 1

~ build soccer stadium in Concord on known earthquake fault in the smallest area you can find.

Lars Anderson May 14, 2020 at 9:32 AM

Good riddance, this proposed downtown soccer stadium project was a total loser. Every time I thought about this project I visualized thousands of drunken soccer fans pouring out of the facility after a match – and getting into their cars to drive to home. Traffic jams downtown are bad enough, but imagine all the drivers having a half a buzz on. Frightening
While I’m glad this project failed, it’s worth noting it’s another in a series of failed project proposals that have been considered by the Concord City Council, a council that has became notorious for their complete and total inability to get anything done.
Under the leadership of Mayor Tim Mcgallian (a stooge for the PD labor union), Laura Hoffmester, (30 years on the council – nothing to show for her work!), and Carlyn Obringer (also a stooge for the Police Department union) Concord’s only excels in one are area; Our city employees in Concord city have the highest wage and benefits package in the bay area. That’s what Concord is now known for – our overpaid city employees.
Despite the big pay packages, Concord’s city workers – many of whom now make 200K and up – can’t seem to get anything done of any consequence.The Lennar development project is now dead, as is the proposal to tear down these 300 coast guard homes and build newer homes, along with more shopping centers (another dubious project, like the proposed soccer stadium, tearing down homes in the SF bay area! In a region where people are desperate to find affordable housing).
Concord, in fact, is a failing city – examples of the enormity of the failure of our city are everywhere. Our library is a crumbling rat-trap, recreation problems are a joke, this Navy base land – sitting there undeveloped now – is a place for the jack rabbits to roam, and possibly get sick from toxic material. City wages in Concord have ballooned to the point where a 13 million dollar deficit is looming, and now you are going to see the fallout from the Cov-19 pandemic on top of that.
Concord is a complete mess – nothing get’s done, problems aren’t solved, development projects don’t get built -the only thing that “happens” now in Concord – year in and year out – is the wages of city workers continue to soar (168,000 a year each city employee cost residents, in wages and benefits – 30,000 more per employee than city workers in Walnut Creek make!)

RTC May 14, 2020 at 11:13 AM

Yawn…………….

Two Wheeler May 15, 2020 at 8:09 AM

Council members are stooges for the police union?
The same council members that voted against extending measure Q? The same ones that voted against a contract extension with no raise?
The same ones that allow managers to come to work and be paid 200k a year to clean the building? The same council that hasn’t yet fixed the roads?

Lars, maybe you should run for council. You clearly have an axe to grind with the council and the pd.

Foonman May 14, 2020 at 9:42 AM

This was always a terrible place for this….glad they dropped it. Can’t believe they can’t find a suitable place for fans….

RDS May 14, 2020 at 9:47 AM

Score one for the ‘rona killing this stupid idea.

Concordejet May 14, 2020 at 9:50 AM

NICE we do not need those ridiculous soccer field. That will make the city more crowd

lovelace May 14, 2020 at 10:14 AM

Cool. Now maybe they will review my proposal for an Olive Garden in this location!

Concord Guy May 14, 2020 at 2:35 PM

Wasn’t the stadium to be built on corn snake habitat?

The Professor May 14, 2020 at 11:01 AM

A really stupid idea and a waste of $.

But if the council is determined to build it, why not incorporate it into the plans for the Naval Weapons Station?

Silva May 14, 2020 at 11:12 AM

Stupidest Idea since tacky high density and tacky tract homes all with insufficient parking and open space shoehorned in all over the Base. And I happen to love soccer. It would’ve been a good way to finish off downtown Concord and cut the city in half. Sorry City Council, no brass plaques with your names this time.

Whoe Jim May 14, 2020 at 11:47 AM

Good news. An asinine idea is rightfully denied… Developer Hall Equities mentioned they had spent a lot of money on their failed venture…Besides exponentially paying for land surveying, where was the money spent?
Does that mean the Concord City Council members will have to pay back Hall Equities for Vacation trips, kickbacks and whatever other treasures they bestowed to them for even considering this boondoggle…….

WC May 14, 2020 at 11:57 AM

That’s a lot of room for homeless hotels!

Shoiley May 14, 2020 at 1:48 PM

Good news!

Ricardo Shilly Shally May 14, 2020 at 1:53 PM

I know!!! Let’s create an OLIVE GARDEN GARDEN in this spot!!! The garden could feature a merry-go-round, where, instead of horses, you would ride grand-scale breadsticks and the ride would be festooned with strands of dried pasta. And characters dressed as bottles of balsamic vinegar could meet n’ greet with the children. Who’s with me?

ON DA May 14, 2020 at 2:42 PM

So said THUD. Mr. THUD.

Kirkwood May 14, 2020 at 2:43 PM

The center of town is no place for a sports complex. It should be out in the boondocks somewhere, perhaps north of Hwy 4. As that area fills in with time, whatever is built would be more compatible with whatever is already there.

BOOYAH! May 14, 2020 at 7:16 PM

Ya, cuz ARCO Arena was WAY better than Golden1! #learn from your mistakes

Eric and May 14, 2020 at 3:49 PM

Too bad,this could of changed the somewhat boring vibe and feeling of concord, which is somewhat a bland s—-hole.

American Citizen May 14, 2020 at 11:08 PM

That’s the last thing we need around here is traffic nightmare like that. why don’t they build something good. Like an indoor gun range? I have to drive all the way to Dublin to go to an indoor gun range.

inmotion May 15, 2020 at 10:34 AM

Dodged a bullet.

The Truth May 15, 2020 at 10:45 AM

This is a bad idea and for many reasons.

First off where is all the soccer players at? Because there is a few parks in the Area and there is small groups of regulars in both and its not PACKED or any competition to say the least.

What Demand? Honestly? Hands?

+Build an ‘Indoor Basketball Court’ with multi-floor with the ability to run around inside the place. Slap a spin class room..

Motivate the area.. not just some soccer fans. Get real.

_Truth

Natalie May 15, 2020 at 2:26 PM

According to our city’s economic development manager, the city plans to find another developer to build a stadium. John Montagh told the Bay Area New Group that the stadium concept isn’t over and was quoted as saying “I think we’ll see interest from other developers”.

City council doesn’t care that the overwhelming majority of Concordians, of all political persuasions, have been against this stadium concept.

cornfed May 17, 2020 at 10:05 AM

No such thing as the suburbs anymore.

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