Nurses in San Francisco on Monday voiced concerns over the proposed Warriors arena in Mission Bay, a day before the first public hearing’s scheduled for the project’s draft environmental impact report.
Kiersten Clickner, a labor and delivery nurse at UC San Francisco’s Mission Bay hospitals, said patients come from throughout the region to receive treatment at UCSF. She believes adding the proposed 18,064-seat arena across from the hospitals at Third and 16th streets will only exacerbate area traffic.
The proposal for the 11-acre site also includes office, retail, parking and open space.
“The planning is not sufficient to accommodate all the fans that will be coming to this arena,” Clickner said at a news conference Monday morning. “There already are problems with AT&T [Park], with Giants fans finding parking, with traffic… We just feel that there needs to be better discussion.”
Clickner was among the two UCSF nurses who spoke to reporters at the news conference, but said she has heard similar concerns from colleagues at UCSF. Representatives with the California Nurses Association expressed concerns with the arena as well.
However, UCSF said in a statement Monday that it remains “supportive” of the project, as long as traffic is managed. The draft EIR, released by city planners on June 5, outlined nearly $40 million in transit improvements The City is confident will help curb congestion on the roads.
“UCSF has been in close communications with The City and remains encouraged by The City’s efforts to mitigate the potential traffic and parking impacts of the proposed Warriors Arena and Events Center on the Mission Bay neighborhood,” the statement reads.
The university added while it’s not affiliated with outside groups that either oppose or support the project, UCSF stands behind faculty and staff who offer “a constructive voice in the discussion” regarding the arena.
The Mission Bay Alliance, a group led by former UCSF officials, has stated strong disapproval of the project, even threatening to take their battle to the courtroom or ballot box to prevent construction of the waterfront arena.
“We think…the impact is going to be grave and that this city will grind to a halt, and that the Manhattanization of San Francisco will occur and nobody will be able to drive around our city,” Sam Singer, a spokesman for the alliance, said after the draft EIR was released.
Officials with the Warriors, however, contend that there is much false information swirling around the project, including the rumor that only 200 parking spaces will be offered to fans during events at the arena.
PJ Johnston, a spokesman for the Warriors, said more than 1,000 spaces will be available on-site to event attendees, and some 6,000 public parking spaces already exist today in the neighborhood. The City is also considering using satellite lots and shuttles for additional vehicles.
“The Warriors intend to be good neighbors, and we’ve been working with The City and UCSF and others in the area to manage traffic and any other concerns,” Johnston said.
The public hearing on the draft EIR will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday, in Room 416 at City Hall.