The Costa Mesa City Council gave unanimous approval Tuesday night for the Los Angeles Chargers to practice for the next 10 summers at the Jack Hammett Sports Complex for training camp.
Cost to the team will be around $150,000 per summer, so the city could get up to $1.5 million from the deal.
That news prompted this 28-year Costa Mesa resident to figure out where the hell Jack Hammett Sports Complex is. I could just walk, drive to Uber the less than a mile to the address, but why bother when there is Google Maps? That informs the field is either on Fairview Road next to Costa Mesa High School or closer to the park with the duck-shit filled pond across from the Orange County Fairgrounds.
Wherever it is, Chargers owner Dean Spanos says he and his franchise are “very proud and very honored to be a part of Costa Mesa and call this our home.”
Of course, given they want to string him up by his deflated balls in San Diego, he would be very proud and very honored to be anywhere else these days.
“This camp is an opportunity for everyone in Costa Mesa to come out and see what it’s all about,” Spanos continues. “I hope the whole city comes out.”
Like Fire Island?
Which brings us to Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Sandra Genis, who says in the same city-issued press release as the one quoting Spanos: “We are pleased to have reached an agreement that will benefit both the Chargers and the Costa Mesa community at large while addressing the concerns of the neighbors. Along with other fans, I’m looking forward to watching the Chargers in action on our fields.”
Costa Mesa is already home to the Chargers in another way, as after the team announced in January it was moving from San Diego to Los Angeles, it revealed its new headquarters would be at the Hive office complex. That prompted this 28-year Costa Mesa resident to figure out where the hell the Hive is; turns out it’s near the almost-in-Fountain-Valley SOCO retail explosion.
Meanwhile, the city notes that since the Jack Hammett Sports Complex fields are refurbished during the summer months, no youth sports teams will be displaced during the time the NFL team uses the fields. Wait, so the Chargers are going to have to put up with crappy turf ala the Raiders in Oakland-Alameda Stadium? Apparently not: Costa Mesa’s ground crew will starting around mid-July bringing the turf up to NFL standards, according to the city.
Training camp is scheduled to take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through around mid August. That’ll put the camp in play during the annual traffic clusterfuck known as the Orange County Fair. The city claims to be working with the team on a “comprehensive plan for managing parking and traffic in the area.”
To sweeten the pot, the Chargers are giving the city $50,000 to be used for a recently approved Mobile Recreation Program and $10,000 to the local AYSO soccer organization to assist with finding field space. Heck, maybe the Chargers can get a field goal kicker from AYSO in return.