Dori Monson hosts a debate on Chris Hansen's Seattle arena planon June 29, 2012 @ 3:34 pm (Updated: 9:53 pm - 6/29/12 )
Dori Monson found that while the arena was a hot topic in the news, he hadn't been spending that much time talking about it on his show. So he brought in radio hosts with differing opinions to battle it out in the studio.
"The deal is great for both sides," said Mike Salk.
When it comes to the arena, are the City of Seattle and King County essentially giving money away to the "rich guys" who will build it?
Dave Ross thinks that under the current arena proposal, the investors, and ultimately the NBA are trying to mascaraed as something that cannot sustain itself. Unlike the opera or symphony, the NBA is a self-sustaining model.
Chris Hansen, and the investors should foot the bill, because they can afford it, according to Dave.
But it's not about the money, necessarily, said Brock Huard. "Skin in the game: They want the city in and the county involved in it."
The plan is unique according to both Brock and Salk. While the city and county will be investing in the arena, it's the the investment group who are on the hook if the arena has money woes.
"The reason you want partners, is [for help] if something goes south," said Brock.
Investor Chris Hansen has proposed building the nearly $500 million arena just south of Safeco and CenturyLink fields. The plan calls for nearly $300 million in private investment from Hansen's group, which includes Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. The amount of public support would be $200 million if an NBA and NHL franchise moved here.
Hansen and his group have run into critics concerned about taxes as Dave Ross addressed, those who would rather an arena be located on the Eastside, and businesses worried about potential traffic issues.
In a study paid for by the investment group, traffic was determined not to be an issue.
Mayor McGinn has also said he is confident the city can handle the extra crowds.
"It's an arena. It's not a stadium. It's 18,000 seats. It's not 45 or 70 thousand seats. It's a lot smaller. The events are at night. People get there a bunch of different ways and we have more transit there [SoDo] than anywhere else in the city," he said.
Seattle City and King County Councilmembers are currently reviewing the proposal.
More from Mike Salk on the arena:
Don't be fooled by arena opponents' fancy tricks
Combating more erroneous and insulting claims from the anti-arena Seattle Times
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