The Seattle Times doesn't like the idea of a basketball arena in SoDo. We mean, they REALLY don't like it. And they're not afraid to let anyone know that, even SoDo Arena developer and hopefully-one-day-soon Sonics owner Chris Hansen.
Times' associate opinions editor Sharon Pian Chan got Hansen on the phone while researching Thursday's KeyArena Or Bust (paraphrasing) piece and here are the eight best moments within.
1. Chris Hansen's clear exasperation with...everything. It's understandable considering his half-billion-dollar plan to bring basketball back to Seattle just went up in smoke. But we've rarely seen the quietly-confident Hansen wear his frustration on his sleeve like this...
...No matter how clear we try to be, people keep taking it a different way and I'm not exactly sure why. ...We have never said that. Why do people keep saying that?
2. Pian Chan referencing "the conspiracy theorists" who think Hansen's plan is to gentrify SoDo and drive out local businesses right after referencing a story she wrote in which she says she thinks Hansen has a plan to gentrify SoDo and drive out local businesses.
3. After getting hammered for weeks about his proposal to create an L.A. Live-type complex in SoDo, Hansen admits his plan is actually nothing like L.A. Live, dummies...
...We plan to do something on a much smaller scale on only the block north of the arena site. We only own three properties there and we plan to do something that is much different from L.A. Live...We said that over and over and over again, we would like to build an entertainment area but it's much smaller. Our vision would not look or feel anything like L.A. Live.
4. The company that's preventing Hansen from expanding further south in SoDo? A strip club who won't sell.
5. Hansen's common sense answer for why he didn't just try to renovate KeyArena...because you can't play basketball in an arena while you're tearing it down.
6. Pian Chan's obsession with Memorial Stadium, which Hansen says he "did not have that ability to purchase." Even going so far as to subtly-hint at conspiracy when Hansen doesn't mention the spot while talking about the feasibility of Seattle Center (even though he already answered that question).
7. "I believe Seattle Center is the rightful home of the Sonics." If that were true, they'd still be there...
8. Hansen's answer when asked who he will endorse in the upcoming mayoral elections...
I don't know what business I would have endorsing anyone in Seattle. I'm a resident of Marin County. · Chris Hansen on Sonics arena: 'Our vision would not look or feel anything like L.A. Live' [Seattle Times]
· Today In SoDo Arena Developments: What Is The Seattle Times Talking About? [Curbed Seattle]
· Sacramento Kings Staying Put, SoDo Arena Plans On Hold [Curbed Seattle]
· Comparing Sodo to the L.A. Live neighborhood [Seattle Times]