Jordan Royer of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association explains why he hates professional basketball.
Amidst the hobos and pigeon droppings at City Hall Park, a coalition of organizations and individuals opposed to construction of a new Sonics arena in the Sodo neighborhood held a press conference this morning to demand that council members table the current proposal and rewrite the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to explore alternative sites.
"This is about process. This is about good government," insisted environmental attorney Peter Goldman, who accused investor Chris Hansen and Mayor Mike McGinn of attempting to have the arena proposal "railroaded through the government."
Opponents are concerned that signing the MOU would make the arena a fait accompli regardless of what subsequent environmental impact studies might find. "Once he has the MOU he can go get a team," explained Vince O'Halloran of the Sailor Union of the Pacific, and O'Halloran and others are concerned that once Hansen has a team there will be no backing out no matter what the impact on Seattle's seaport might be.
Jordan Royer, representing the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association was blunt: "Our members have assets that float." Faced with increased traffic and other impacts, shippers may choose to move their business to Tacoma and other ports, warns Royer, who sees Seattle's seaport dying a "death from a thousand cuts."
Hmm. A death from a thousand cuts. That may be exactly what opponents are wishing on the arena deal as well.