The first staff-level meeting between the San Diego Chargers and San Diego mayor’s office over the National Football League team’s decade-long hunt for a new stadium is scheduled for next week, a mayoral spokesman confirmed Thursday.

Deputy Chief of Staff Matt Awbrey described the gathering set for Wednesday as an ”initial meeting to discuss with the Chargers Mayor Faulconer’s priorities on this issue, which are keeping the Chargers in San Diego while protecting San Diego taxpayers.”

Qualcomm Stadium. Photo by Chris Stone

It doesn’t appear that Kevin Faulconer himself will take part.

It was learned last week that a member of the mayor’s staff had spoken with Chargers executives by phone, but the substance of the conversation was not revealed.

The team conducted an extensive, countywide search for a site for a new facility to replace aging Qualcomm Stadium. The effort was derailed for years by the city’s fiscal challenges and the recession.

A couple of years ago, Chargers officials settled on an East Village location near Petco Park, but the site presents a tight squeeze for an NFL stadium and would require environmental mitigation.

More recently, the team proposed building a new stadium in conjunction with an expansion of the San Diego Convention Center, which at the time was being considered by a skeptical California Coastal Commission. The commissioners eventually approved the expansion project as is.

The Chargers met with Councilman Todd Gloria – then-Interim mayor – last September.

– City News Service

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