About Sonics Arena

The Sonics Arena proposal is for a 100% privately-financed, multi-purpose sports and entertainment arena in Seattle’s Stadium District, just south of CenturyLink Field and Safeco Field. The primary objective of our proposal is to bring the Sonics back to Seattle, and create a new home for the NHL.

In February of 2017, the Sonics Arena Investment Group submitted a revised petition to the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) requesting a conditional vacation of a portion of Occidental Avenue South to allow construction of the SoDo Arena.

If approved by SDOT and the Seattle City Council, this conditional street vacation will enable the investment team to work with the NBA and potential NHL owners to acquire teams for Seattle. Importantly, the street will not be vacated and arena construction will not begin until an NBA or NHL team is secured.

KEY BENEFITS

  • The SoDo Arena site is ideally located at the southern end of Seattle’s Stadium District, just one block south of Safeco Field and near the region’s most robust transportation network
  • The Arena project is 100% privately-financed
  • The SoDo Arena’s state-of-the-art design incorporates improved seating, audio/video, and load-in/load-out facilities
  • Capacity of 19,000 seats, an ideal size for both NBA and NHL events
  • If the conditional street vacation is approved by the Seattle City Council, the investment group can immediately begin the work of bringing the NHL and NBA back to Seattle
  • Construction can begin as soon as a team is acquired and would take 22 – 26 months
  • Acquired team(s) would play in KeyArena until the SoDo Arena construction was complete. KeyArena would be upgraded at SoDo Arena expense to bring it up to NBA or NHL standards.

COMMUNITY BENEFITS

The Sonics Arena Investment Group is committed to giving back to Seattle’s unique community and culture.

  • $8 million in new public art program funding
  • 32,000 square feet of open public community and art space
  • Requirement that the Arena NBA team offers tickets affordable to low and middle-income families, setting aside 1,500 tickets per game at reduced prices ($20 or less)
  • NBA franchise will establish local partners with a goal of contributing to future success and health of youth through scholarships, after school programs and youth mentorship initiatives
  • Community Benefit Agreement with appropriate community organizations that will be affected by the Arena, including Pioneer Square and the International District/Chinatown

ECONOMIC BENEFITS

With one of the largest commitments of private capital ever made for a facility of its kind in North America, the SoDo Arena and surrounding Stadium District are poised to become a catalyst for regional economic growth.

  • Estimated 3,570 Arena construction jobs, $289 million in wage earnings and hundreds of full and part-time jobs created for Arena operations
  • A Labor Peace Agreement with labor organizations representing workers in King County
  • Estimated $313 million in annual ancillary economic activity
  • Demand for upwards of 5,000 winter-season Seattle hotel room nights generated from NBA and NHL teams
  • Additional game-day revenue for surrounding restaurants, bars and small businesses

TRAFFIC AND PARKING

The Stadium District was chosen for this project due to the existing and robust transportation network that is well suited to handle large scale events. The SoDo neighborhood is the region’s largest transportation hub, where Link light rail, Sounder train line, bus rapid transit, Sound Transit Express, State ferry routes, two interstate freeways and the future deep-bore tunnel all converge. The neighborhood also has ample on and off-street parking to accommodate stadium sporting events and concerts.

  • The Environmental Impact Statement for the SoDo Arena concludes a minimal effect on the flow of traffic through the Stadium District
  • All SoDo sports teams have a joint operating agreement that enables a coordinated approach to game scheduling to ensure game-day traffic congestion is limited
  • The Sonics Arena Investment Group will make direct contributions to area traffic projects designed to improve freight mobility, reduce traffic congestion and improve pedestrian and bike-friendly infrastructure
  • Existing SoDo parking inventory is capable of handling days with single events; an NBA sellout crowd would consume less than a third of the existing parking capacity within a 15-minute walk of the Arena