Warriors arena clears board committee; slated for full board next month

The proposed Warriors arena in Mission Bay is located at Third and 16th streets. Courtesy rendering

The proposed Warriors arena in Mission Bay is continuing to wend its way through The City’s approval process.

At a special meeting Monday, the Board of Supervisors’ Budget and Finance Committee unanimously endorsed sending the project – which includes an 18,000-seat arena, offices and open space at an 11-acre site at Third and 16th streets in Mission Bay – to the full board on Dec. 8.

The hearing followed two key approvals last week, the certification of the project’s final environmental impact report by the Commission on Community Investment and Infrastructure and the Planning Commission on Thursday for the two six- to 11-story office buildings and 546 parking spaces also planned for the site.

Among the components of the project that went before the Budget and Finance Committee on Monday was the establishment of a Mission Bay Transportation Fund to pay for city services and capital improvements needed to accommodate the arena.

Money in the fund will come from project-generated revenues, estimated at more than $11 million annually.

The fund came about as part of an agreement between The City and UC San Francisco last month, when the university officially endorsed the arena. The arena will be located across the street from UCSF’s three new hospitals that opened in February.

Plans to add parking control officers, purchase four new light-rail vehicles, improve the T-Third light-rail line and construct a center boarding platform at the stop near the arena to accommodate additional riders are also on the horizon in an effort to mitigate traffic during events at the arena.

But opponents of the arena, including the Mission Bay Alliance group led by former UCSF officials, spoke out at Monday’s meeting against the project, arguing that there are not enough improvements to quell the anticipated traffic in the area during events at the arena.

Adam Van de Water, project manager for San Francisco’s office of economic and workforce development, emphasized that the average attendance at the arena is just 9,300 people per event, half the number of people the arena will have the capacity to hold.

He added that basketball and baseball games at the nearby AT&T Park are unlikely to create traffic jams simultaneously, noting that their seasons are at opposite times of the year.

“Baseball and basketball are very complementary…there is very little overlap between the two teams,” Van de Water said of the Warriors and Giants.

The project is scheduled to go before the Entertainment Commission for its entertainment permit on Tuesday.

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