Hedge-Fund Manager Proposes New Sports Stadium For Seattle

Hedge-Fund manager Christopher Hansen has made a $290 million proposal to the city of Seattle that would effectively bring NBA and NHL teams to the city.

Under his proposal $290 million will be provided in private investments which will be used towards construction of the stadium while the city would need to cough up $200 million to help cover the full $450 million to $500 million cost.

With his plan Hansen and his investment team will be responsible for securing an NBA franchise and for finding a partner willing to bring an NHL team to Seattle.

The cities refusal to build a new stadium drove the Seattle SuperSonics away from the city to Oklahoma after the 2008 season, the SuperSonics had enjoyed a 41 year history in Seattle before leaving the area.

In a letter submitted to the cities approval board Hansen called for the city to pay their part using taxes and revenues generated by the new facility including rent charged to the teams using the arena. In the meantime City officials has said that no new public taxes would be needed for the building and the city’s portion of the investment will be capped at $200 million. If for whatever reason costs exceed the cities $200 million contribution it will be Hansen’s responsibility to cover those costs.

While work still needs to be completed for the deal to be finalized a decision is expected in one months time.

In the meantime King County executive Dow Constantine says of the cities main contention:

“There will be no arena unless there is an agreement to get a team here to occupy that arena over a very long term.”

Hansen’s decision to take on so much of the liability comes about after a 2006 initiative that prohibited Seattle from supporting teams with taxes unless those investments show promise of yielding a profit.

The new arena would be built on land that Hansen already owns in Seattle’s SoDo neighborhood where the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Mariners already hold franchises.

Do you like the prospect of having the NHL, NFL, NBA and MLB all in one neighborhood?

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