Sunday, August 6, 2017

KING5: KeyArena, landmark status fallout

Here's twist to the latestest effort to remodel KeyArena.
But Lois Maag, a spokesperson for the Department of Neighborhoods, shed some light on how the process would work moving forward.
"The project team (in this case OVG) would pursue proposed alterations through the Certificate of Approval process," she wrote via email, in regards to whether Oak View Group would have to preserve the garage. "The applicant can apply for a Certificate of Approval to alter or demolish the building, following the procedures in the Landmarks Ordinance. Before pursuing that option, the staff would urge them to explore alternatives to demolition and discuss them with the Landmarks Board."
What's next for proposed KeyArena renovation after landmark designation? via @KING5Seattle

A process OVG did not anticipate. KeyArena has already been gutted and the floor lowered. The garage is an interesting problem. Can they find another path into the arena? That's a big ask. Relocating the garage and/of its contents to another location would be a challenge.
Ok, good luck.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Seattle Preservation Board designates KeyArena, Bressi Garage, as Landmarks

KING5's Chris Daniels reports on the potential benefits and complications the landmark designation means.
KeyArena was a forgone conclusion years ago, but the garage was in question.
What was going to be modern use with OVG controlling the property, (are they paying for that?), has taken a turn to 1923.

It's most likely the city will gloss over this by claiming they will figure it out after committing to the project, like they have with everything else (public cost, transportation, revenue splits, did I mention transportation?).

Chris Daniels:

The original Oak View Group proposal has called for tearing down the Bressi Garage, which was built in 1923, for use as a staging area and potential future office space, as well as an entry point for a subterranean tunnel to a loading dock on the south end of the new facility.  The City's Economic Development office offered it up in the original request for proposals for renovation of KeyArena.

However, the 11-member Preservation Board felt, after a tour Monday, that the building has an important place in Seattle history.  It voted to preserve the walls of the brick building, interior trusses, and deck.  Board members argued that it deserved designation because it "it is associated in a significant way with a significant aspect of the cultural, political or economic heritage of the community, city, state, or nation" and "it embodies the distinctive visible characteristics of an architectural style, or period, or a method of construction."

Historic Preservation does not necessarily rule out renovation, but the designation triggers a "controls and incentives" phase of development.  Erin Doherty, who is the coordinator the Landmarks Board, said after the meeting that the Bressi ruling triggers a wide variety of possibilities, but the design and how the building is treated within it, will be a factor.  The designation could also trigger a negotiation or settlement with Pottery Northwest or potentially a new plan for the tunnel and staging area.  It may also make the city eligible for further historic tax credits.  On Monday, OVG Chair Tim Leiweke, Director of Special Project Lance Lopes, and potential NHL investor David Bonderman were all seen at City Hall meeting with council members.

Seattle Preservation Board landmarks KeyArena, Bressi Garage

Monday, July 31, 2017's David Aldridge column on Seattle's NBA options

I've thought this for a few years, before Chris Hansen appeared, that relocation of an existing team was the most likely path to the NBA returning to the Seattle market.
Is it better for the owners to split off a portion of ongoing revenues for one time cash? Sure, but split 30 ways it dilutes quickly, and does nothing for the overall health of the league.
Or, is it better that a franchise that cannot keep up with inflating value and costs of an NBA team be allowed to turn a profit from sale, and relocate that team to a viable market.

I think some owner will not be denied a half billion dollar profit that may only be possible if the team relocates to Seattle.

This is a business.
"I believe Seattle should have the first shot," one owner said, on condition of anonymity. "I think a move is more likely than expansion, but right now, neither looks likely."
A second owner said Seattle " is a great market, especially for the NBA," but echoed Silver's sentiments.
"I agree with you there are some markets that would be great addition to the NBA but in terms of expansion, I think we need 30 solid teams first," the second owner said. "If there are teams that are repeatedly losing money every year even after revenue sharing, we must consider moving existing teams to those markets first. Then, once all teams are healthy and making a profit, we can perhaps discuss expansion -- but not until then."
Seattle still has solid shot at NBA return, but don't expect it to happen anytime soon -

Watch those franchise values.
[edited below, text below added 8/4/2017]
I've read most little bits of information that might be, could be, may be, something for way too long, but this is unusually thorough, posted on, and anonimous source owners. That's a bit different.
They lay out their path to making a decision for Seattle or not, and in what order.
The question is, how long do those two paths take?
But I take it that they are on that path now, or why bother talking? Maybe we get a relocated team, or an expansion team, or nothing, in that order.