Today, the city's Department of Planning and Development released its draft study examining the environmental impacts of building a 725,000-square-foot, 20,000-seat basketball arena in Seattle. And, just to royally fuck with me, Goldy's on vacation. So! You're stuck with me explaining this thing. (If you thirst for more than my shallow knowledge can provide, check out the Puget Sound Business Journal's EIS coverage, which declares that "delaying Sodo arena could lower odds of landing NBA team.")
Before we both fall asleep, here are the highlights of the study:
The DPD began by looking at 21 potential sites around the city that met minimum property size and zoning for Chris Hansen's fantasy arena. Applying a number of criteria—including transportation impacts, economic impacts, geology and whatnot, DPD narrowed the list down to three viable sites: A new arena at Key Arena, one across courtyard at Seattle Center's Memorial Stadium, and the Sodo site that everyone loves to bitch about (the DPD presents three alternatives for this site, with various seating capacities).
There are detracting factors for each of the sites but the upshot is that, so far, DPD hasn't identified an environmental impact that couldn't be mitigated. So these three sites are all basically viable. You can read the 437-page draft yourself by going here and following the directions.
Now then, there are two public hearings scheduled on the draft: Tuesday, September 10 at City Hall and Thursday, September 19 at the Seattle Center. Both meetings will take place at 6pm.
The city expects to publish a final environmental study in the first quarter of 2014.