School board pushes back decision on Civic Stadium

School board pushes back decision on Civic Stadium »Play Video

EUGENE, Ore. -- The 4J School Board is pushing back its deadline to decide what to do with Civic Stadium.

At its meeting Wednesday night, the board unanimously settled on a June 1 deadline.

The board currently has three proposals for the property: replacing the stadium with a Fred Meyer store, restaurants, and apartments; replacing the stadium with a YMCA; and preserving the stadium and developing a multipurpose sports venue.

During initial evaluation, the Fred Meyer option scored the highest. Under the new timeline, however, proponents of each option can modify its proposal before a final presentation to the school board.

Eugene's City Council will also be able to work with grassroots organization Save Civic Stadium to modify the proposal to preserve the stadium.

During the 4J School Board work session and meeting Wednesday night, board members discussed whether it was fair to push back the deadline, and whether this could risk losing proposals from either Eugene YMCA or Master Development, LLC & Powell Development Co. (the purveyors of the Fred Meyer option).

Outgoing 4J Superintedent George Russell has been vocal in sticking to a tight deadline. "We need to move forward. This board should not go past June 1 on making a final decision on this," said Russell.

During public comment, a handful of people stood up for preserving Civic Stadium, saying it was in the best interest of the community to maintain the landmark, citing education benefits and safety concerns of a Fred Meyer store.

"We've worked with you for more than two years to help you find the way -- including working with your consultants -- to try and determine a way to preserve Civic Stadium," said Russell. "But the impression you give is that the district has been fighting you all the way. And quite frankly, I find that inappropriate."

Under the new timeline, all three plan proponents will present to the board back-to-back on one day, but that date has not been determined.