SEATTLE – Chris Hansen says his effort to attract an NBA team will continue.
In a lengthy, conciliatory message on his website, Hansen congratulated the City of Sacramento and it’s mayor for winning the battle for the Kings franchise.
“I’d like to start out by congratulating Mayor Johnson and the fans in Sacramento for the tremendous effort they put together to keep their team,” wrote Hansen, “Given what our community went through in 2008, if there is any silver lining in this for Seattle it is seeing Sacramento’s dedicated fan base successfully rally to keep the Kings. This was never about Seattle fans versus Sacramento fans, and it goes unsaid that there is a mutual respect given the circumstances we have both been through. This process was instead about our group and our city putting our best foot forward in an honest and transparent way to return basketball to Seattle, and in that regard our efforts remain undeterred.”
Hansen admitted says the disappointment will not stop his effort to build an Arena in Seattle, ”even as we are disappointed with the developments related to our efforts to purchase the Kings, we would just like to reiterate our dedication to bringing the NBA back to Seattle. We will continue to press forward with our Arena plans with the same commitment and effort we have over the last two years, and look forward to working with the City and County to see the project through the hurdles that remain. Likewise, we plan to continue to work with the League regarding opportunities that may arise to return an NBA franchise to our City.”
The NBA Board of Governor’s voted last Wednesday to deny Hansen’s relocation application, effectively killing his bid to buy the Sacramento Kings. The owners then sold the franchise to a group interested in keeping the team in the California Capitol.
Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development, or DPD, said Monday that the SoDo Arena environmental review process has been delayed, but not due to last Wednesday’s vote.
Bryan Stevens, a spokesperson for DPD, said Monday “The review process continues to move forward. Early discussions anticipated a draft of the environmental impact statement (EIS) in June, but the complexity of the analysis and necessary evaluation requires a bit more time to provide a complete and thorough report.”
Stevens say the draft EIS will likely now be available in August, with a public review meeting scheduled in July.
Hansen’s group has already purchased nearly $70 million dollars in land in the SoDo neighborhood, when factoring in the real estate purchase and other related costs.