Sunday, July 27, 2008

UC Berkeley: Training Center Delay 'Completely Expected'

BERKELEY, Calif. -- The University of California, Berkeley has been hit by a delay of another 20 days in its bid to build a news sports training center next to its football stadium, which sits on an earthquake fault.  But UC Berkeley spokesman Dan Mogulof said Friday that the 20-day delay "was completely expected" and was automatically triggered by appeals filed on Thursday by two groups who have filed suit seeking to stop the university's 158,000-square-foot project, which is projected to cost $140 million.  The delay means that an injunction that currently bars the university from starting work on the project will remain in place until at least Aug. 13, Mogulof said.  A UC Board of Regents committee approved building the sports training center on Dec. 5, 2006.  In addition, the Panoramic Hill Association, which represents people who live near the stadium, the California Oak Foundation and the city of Berkeley filed suit against the project.

Alameda County Superior Court Judge Barbara Miller issued a preliminary injunction on Jan. 29, 2007, which temporarily stopped the project. But Miller issued a ruling on Tuesday that allows the project to go forward, stating that the university has ad dressed most of her concerns about the project. However, Miller kept her injunction in place for another seven days, until next Tuesday, to give the plaintiffs in the case time to file an appeal.  The Panoramic Hill Association and the California Oak Foundation filed a joint appeal of Miller's ruling on Thursday.  But the Berkeley City Council on Thursday night couldn't muster the five votes necessary for it to file an appeal at this time.

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