SANTA CLARA (KCBS)— Santa Clara Mayor Jamie Matthews said Tuesday that the long-anticipated groundbreaking of 49ers stadium is finally set for April 19th.

Thousands of meetings over the last five and a half years went into deliberating financial issues and whether or not the stadium would be built. Matthews said now there’s no turning back.

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“We’ve had a couple of cases that came and tried to stop us and slow us down that were thrown out. Everything’s been thrown at us, but this stadium was meant to be in Silicon Valley,” said the mayor.

The City Council approved the lease, budget and overall terms of the project on March 13th in a 6-1 vote.

The final price tag is almost $1.2 billion—up from the original projection of $937 million. But city officials now expect the cost to taxpayers to be lower.

KCBS’ Betsy Gebhart Reports:

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The 40-year lease deal calls on the 49ers to pay the Santa Clara stadium authority about $30 million per year. That figure, however, would rise if the stadium authority had trouble meeting its loan obligations.

Crews are already working at the site for what the mayor called “make-ready work.”

Matthews said money was spent on removing utility lines from underneath the footprint of the stadium, among other preparation jobs.

The anticipated date of completion is August 2014, just in time for the fall NFL season.

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