What could the future hold for Key Arena?
Last week was a busy one for potential Seattle NBA/NHL arenas. After Chris Hansen stated that he’ll pay for a $500M+ new Sodo arena with private funding, Mayor Ed Murray told The Seattle Times that LA-based Oak View Group has expressed interest in Key Arena. In addition, Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), an arena builder and manager for Key Arena marketing, appears open to a renovation of the Key.
Mayor Murray announced that the City will issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) in January. The RFP process opens up Key Arena renovations to private parties.
He also acknowledged the impact to Uptown:
“We continue to listen to options to redevelop KeyArena as part of our revitalization of Seattle Center. There are many challenges to consider, including how to address traffic in the growing Uptown neighborhood, and any viable plan will include efforts to mitigate these concerns, while also bringing Seattle tremendous cultural and financial benefit. But, I remain committed to building a state-of-the-art arena in Seattle, and this effort means multiple entities could be working to make that a reality. I also remain committed to bringing the NBA back to Seattle.”
While traffic woes would certainly increase with a revamped arena, the positive impact to Queen Anne and Uptown businesses would be significant. When we lost the Sonics, local restaurants and bars lost business – and some had to close down.
You can read the latest on Hansen’s proposed Sodo arena and the possible renovation of Key Arena in this Seattle Times article.
Bernie Sanders rally planned for Sunday at Key Arena
Today the Bernie Sanders campaign announced a rally at Key Arena this Sunday, March 20th. The rally begins at 2pm and is a free event and open to the public, so the crowds may be large. (we do not have estimates from SDOT yet)
Per the event page, tickets are not required, but RSVPs are strongly encouraged. Admission is first come, first served. You can RSVP here.
According to the Seattle Times, Seattle is #1 among the 50 largest US cities for per-capita donations to Bernie Sanders. In advance of large crowds, the campaign is “strongly” encouraging both carpooling and public transportation, including the Monorail.
Expect Lower Queen Anne/Uptown to be crowded on Sunday afternoon prior to and following the event.
Traffic Alert: Trans-Siberian Orchestra & Seattle Marathon will impact traffic this weekend
Two traffic alerts for today and tomorrow – Trans-Siberian Orchestra is at Key Arena today, Saturday, for performances at 4pm and 8pm. The city estimates 10,000 people will attend each of the shows (20,000 total), so expect traffic around Key Arena this afternoon and evening.
The bigger impact will likely be from the Seattle Marathon, which is tomorrow, Sunday, November 29th. The organizers cite the Seattle Marathon as the “largest combination marathon/half marathon in the Northwest and one of the top ten largest in the US” – what does that mean? 15,000 participants + thousands of spectators, and road closures around the Seattle Center, where the race starts and finishes.
The race map with street closures is below. For some reason, the Seattle Marathon organizers have once again decided to produce a West-oriented map, instead of the standard North-oriented view. So, it may look a bit odd, but note that 5th Ave near the Seattle Center will be closed 5:30am-9am, and one side of Mercer will be closed 8:45am-4pm.
Click the map for a larger image:
And, just to make things a bit more complicated, traffic-wise, the Seahawks are playing the Pittsburgh Steelers at CenturyLink tomorrow (Sunday), with kickoff at 1:25pm.
Traffic Alert: Barry Manilow at Key Arena tonight
Plan ahead for 10,000 Barry Manilow fans coming to the neighborhood tonight. Manilow is performing at Key Arena, and it’s his last multi-city tour. Kudos to Manilow for keeping a set of affordable tickets too:
The GRAMMY®, TONY®, and EMMY® Award-winning musician’s career skyrocketed to superstardom when his mega hit song, “Mandy,” topped the charts in 1975. In the spirit of that special year, tickets will be priced to tie into that year and will start at $19.75. According to concert promoter AEG Live, Manilow insisted that the average ticket price remain low and that a greater range of ticket prices be available.”
The show begins at 7:30pm and runs until 11pm, so expect traffic and parking to be tricky starting around 6:30pm or so.
We Day Seattle is Thursday at Key Arena; expect increased traffic from chartered buses
We Day Seattle returns to Key Arena tomorrow, Thursday, April 23rd, hosting 11,500 attendees that will arrive by private bus service between 8am and 10am, and depart between 2pm and 4pm. A heads up for traffic around Key Arena during the morning and early evening rush hours.
What’s We Day? According to their web site, We Day is “an annual series of stadium-sized events, We Day brings together world-renowned speakers and performers… with tens of thousands of youth to kick-start a year of action through We Act. You can’t buy a ticket to We Day—you earn it by taking on one local and one global action.”
Kids who attend this year’s We Day Seattle 2015 will hear from a wide variety of celebrities from sports, acting, performing, as well as from inspirational speakers. Local celebrities include Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, Seahawks players Doug Baldwin, Luke Wilson, and Bobby Wagner, local band The Head and the Heart, and more.
Buses will be staged at Smith Cove Cruise Park Terminal 91.
Buses will use curb lanes for drop-offs between 8-10am and pick-ups between 2-4pm at the following locations:
- east side of 1st Ave N between Thomas and Republican
- south side of Republican between 1st Ave N and Warren Ave N
- east side of Warren between Republican and Mercer
- south side of Mercer between Warren and 5th Ave N
- east side of 4th Ave N between Mercer and 5th Ave N
- west side of 2nd Ave N between Thomas and Denny Way
- both sides of Thomas between Warren and 5th Ave N
- east side of Warren between Thomas and John streets
Plan ahead for increased traffic from the busses and 11,500 attendees. It’ll be crowded around Key Arena and the surrounding streets.
Key Arena events and PNB’s Swan Lake tonight and Saturday will impact traffic
Apologies for the late notice for tonight, but hopefully Facebook and Twitter will help spread the word.
This event is tonight at Key Arena:
- 2015 Stars on Ice “Dancing for Joy” Tour is Friday, April 10 from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.About 6,000 people are expected to attend.
Plus, there’s also Swan Lake at McCaw Hall tonight, Friday, April 10th – and Saturday and Sunday too:
- Swan Lake performances by the Pacific Northwest Ballet are Friday, April 10, 7:30pm and Saturday, April 11with shows at 1pm and 7:30pm Sunday, April 12, noon show. There are about 3,000 people expected at each show.
And, Saturday, it’s PNB plus this concert that’s going to draw 10,000 people:
• Chris Tomlin concert on Saturday, April 11 from 7pm to 11pm there are about 10,000 people expected to attend.
Heads up if you’re driving around Lower Queen Anne tonight or tomorrow, there will be extra traffic and less on-street parking.