Sodo Arena Plan Advances To The Full King County Council

Oct 10, 2012

The full King County Council is expected to vote on the latest Sodo arena plan next week, following some adjustments made by the council’s budget committee Tuesday.

Committee chairman Joe McDermott said the adjustments included that language that requires
improving pedestrian access to the new Sodo arena. “It could be anywhere from sidewalks to an overpass or underpass somewhere.  I want to underscore that those kinds of pedestrian improvement also assist in freight mobility,” he said.

Freight mobility has been a top issue for critics including the Port of Seattle, which has said it’s concerned that increased traffic could hurt maritime businesses.

The latest arena plan also calls for an environmental study of alternative sites, even though the developers have said they’re only interested in building in one location, in Sodo.

McDermott said a study of other locations would help officials vet the project.

“I think it is incumbent to make sure we know the full impacts of this site and to do that would be comparing to other sites as well.  If we decide that other sites would have less impact, and be better for the region, we’re not required to proceed,” he said.  

McDermott said it was not yet decided whether the alternative sites would be outside of the city of Seattle.

The full King County Council and Seattle City Council are expected to vote on the latest plan October 15.