Los Angeles FC is seeking to set up operations in Tustin, but team representatives and local officials do not appear to be on the same page.
Los Angeles FC has been considering the Orange County city for a large-scale development at the former site of the Marine Corps Air Station Tustin. Under the proposal, Los Angeles FC would build a team headquarters and small stadium for training, plus complex fields for multiple sports, a sports medicine center, and commercial development.
Tustin was pitched on the idea a year ago, but the project has gained little traction.
The sticking point among the sides involved is the use of the site. The location has previously been discussed a possible public park, and while Los Angeles FC and some county officials claim that this project would satisfy that plan, some among Tustin’s ranks say that there are still unaddressed concerns with the team’s proposal. More from the OC Register:
Supervisor Todd Spitzer said Tustin officials have been hindering the process.
“The deal should’ve been cut a long time ago,” Spitzer said. “But we can’t get Tustin to sit down and agree to a deal that would put O.C. on the international soccer map, providing outstanding recreational opportunities for our young children and be a nationally rated training center.”
Tustin City Manager Jeff Parker disagreed with Spitzer’s characterization, saying the city is open to the proposal but wants a guarantee that the land would still have public open space, as he says was promised under the regional park concept plan approve by the county’s Board of Supervisors in 2012.
He said the proposal would at the very least have to include a ring of public park space surrounding the athletic complex to provide a buffer between the facility and the surrounding community.
“We’ve said if it’s commercial recreation, we don’t have a problem with it. We just want a mix there,” Parker said. “But if you take all 85 acres for a private venture, we would have some concern because then it’s no longer a park that the community can enjoy.”
There are multiple entities in play. The Navy owns the property and has discussed turning it over to the county. However, any plan for the site would need the City of Tustin’s approval. Los Angeles FC is going to have to work on having at least the headquarters in place by 2018, when the team begins play at its new stadium at Exposition Park.
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