Shortly after The Stranger published its full throated endorsement of the proposed new Sodo arena, I posted a few caveats, suggesting three modifications to the agreement that should be implemented before the Seattle and King County councils moved forward:
- Modify the Memorandum of Understanding to assure that both KeyArena and the Sodo arena are union shops;
- Forcefully restate existing city policy that maintains Sodo as an industrial zone, resisting further residential and commercial development outside of the current stadium district boundaries;
- Commit to funding necessary east/west traffic improvements, including the long-promised Lander Street Overpass.
As it turns out, the council and Chris Hansen managed to address all three of my concerns:
- Hansen confirmed yesterday that he has reached agreements with the teamsters, stagehands, and service employee unions to make the new arena a union shop, and that he would maintain KeyArena as a union shop were he to take over its management.
- The council has declared its intention to impose a new Port Overlay District that would more proactively protect maritime and industrial uses within the Duwamish Manufacturing and Industrial Center.
- Transportation improvements within Sodo will be initially funded by $40 million in arena revenue and bond financing, money which the city and county hope to use to get matching contributions from the port, the state, and the federal government.
Can't say that the $40 million is enough to mitigate east/west mobility in Sodo, but it's a start, and it comes at no additional expense to taxpayers. So all in all, there's at least one voter who feels like his concerns were heard.