If you thought SODO was crowded already, with both Safeco and Century Link fields housing the Mariners, Sounders and Seahawks respectively, think again. This is one of the main local concerns amongst the opposition to what is now becoming a foreseeable plan for Seattle to build another arena in close proximity to the already existing stadiums.
Chris Hansen, who leads the investment group making this all possible, reached an agreement with both King County and the City of Seattle this week, which could mean big things for Seattle fans.
Originally as discussed, the city would need to secure both an NBA and NHL team in order to begin construction. In the newly released ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ however, construction on an arena can begin as soon as an NBA team is secured. The amount that the city and county would have to invest would be lower in this case, capped at $125 million, but the project would be completed.
If Seattle is able to secure both an NBA and NHL team the city and county could invest a combined maximum of $200 million which is still far less than the $290 million being contributed by private investors under Hansen.
Although this is exciting news in the battle for Seattle’s return to the NBA after the still traumatic loss of the Supersonics, securing an actual team remains the number one problem ahead.
Further, the MOU will go before both the City Council and King County Council to be approved. With concerns from Port of Seattle business groups about increased congestion in this already crowded area, the issue is still far from one-sided.