By Dave Solt
“A few temporary bleachers,” is how JSerra High School described their plans in a document presented to the city. After reviewing the plans the school presented to the city’s Design Review Committee, one can see this is the start of a full-blown stadium.
This facility on Camino Capistrano adjoins two residential neighborhoods and is across the street from a third. Stadiums and housing do not mix. At this point in time, the plans call for 2,989 permanent seats and 1,842 to 1,924 additional temporary seats for rock concerts, tournaments and other events. This adds up to 4,913 seats, plus concession facilities and restrooms.
No big deal they are saying. They only want a three-year permit on the bleachers. However, their plans for the concessions and restrooms are permanent, and they have a history of project-creep.
The pool was only going to be for physical education and to share with the public? Have you seen any of the public in their pool? Me neither. However, they do run summer water polo camps at 6:30 a.m. Whistles, coaches yelling, teams cheering all in sight of the homes.
Building a stadium is outside of the agreements the school made with the city when they asked for concessions as they filed the original permits. Included in that agreement is a statement they would not be playing football at home. However, they have now scheduled Long Beach Wilson in this facility for August 31. That’s aggressive scheduling, as they have no permits to do so.
So what are they up to? In my opinion the school is trying to go low-key on the bleachers and ask for temporary permits. “Hey, it’s for the kids.” They will have built the permanent concessions and restrooms, so it will be no big deal to build the permanent stadium in three years. The bonds to build this will be paid for by renting out the stadium. The residential areas have stadium lighting pouring into their homes now. Image the noise from night games and concerts. The city should hold JSerra High School to the existing agreements and not permit them to add almost 5,000 seats.