The city of Seattle is working furiously to bring an NBA team to their neck of the woods. And if they can secure a commitment from a franchise to come to Seattle, they have the approval to begin building a new state-of-the-art arena to house this team. The new arena could even mean an NHL franchise in the city, which would be huge for a town that currently has two popular franchises in the Seahawks and Mariners.
Jane Hague, a member of the Metropolitan King County Council, supports the idea of a new stadium in town, but wants to see the logistics of the operation first. That includes parking, transportation and getting folks in and out of the area in a safe and timely manner. Hague recently released this statement on the planning.
"Yesterday's proposal for a multi-purpose arena is one more step towards a private public partnership that would potentially bring professional basketball, hockey and other events to our region.
"On the day after, let us leverage the energy and enthusiasm for this break-through and resolve to deal with the issue of "if we build it, how will they come...and go?"
"The impact is immense as events related to the proposed venue would help area businesses, including restaurants, lodging and others while providing more jobs and creating additional tax revenues during these challenging times. It also would contribute to the economic engine of not only sports but international trade and our region's competitiveness.
"This proposal is also a timely opportunity to fix the inadequacies of transportation access in and out of south downtown and West Seattle. While there is adequate mass transit to the current and proposed facility, there are other issues to consider: road transportation for residents and working people, as well as freight mobility for area businesses-including the Port of Seattle-will transition from inadequate to worse.
She definitely has a point -- building a new arena in a large city which thousands of fans would fill up on a nightly basis does require a lot of planning -- and it is imperative for Seattle to work through these potential issues in the coming weeks. As Hague mentions in the statement, a new arena would obviously be huge financially for the city. Now it's just a matter of securing a commitment from an NBA franchise.