Mixed reaction to new SODO arena designs



SEATTLE - Preliminary sketches of the proposed SODO arena were released on Friday.

The drawings show a multi-purpose arena designed for basketball, hockey and concerts.

The new design guidance document also shows how the arena would change what is now industrial land near the port into an entertainment district.

Reaction to the sketches was mixed.

"How can you not be excited about this?" asked David Nelson, a basketball fan who has been going to Sonics games since 
high school. "It's NBA basketball. It might be coming back. I'm really stoked about it."


"This was a Sonics town and it's one of the best memories I've had as a young adult," Nelson said. "It's exciting to think that it could possibly come back."

However, not everyone is excited. Critics still say that freight mobility may be compromised by event traffic.

"You really don't want to jeopardize the competitiveness of the marine cargo sector," Dave Gering of the Manufacturing Industrial Council said. "The rail support is essential to that."

"That's the only harbor that we've got," Gering added. "Those are the only marine cargo facilities that we've got. They can't be replaced, probably, so that's a lot at stake."

The first public meeting on the design prototypes is on Nov. 27.