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Warriors plan new arena at Mission Bay

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The Golden State Warriors made it official Tuesday that they will build their new arena in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood. The arena is expected to be ready in time for the start of the 2018-19 season.

The Warriors first announced their intention to move back to the City by the Bay two years ago. The original plan was for a new arena to be built at Pier 30-32, a stunning waterfront location just south of the Bay Bridge and north of AT&T Park. However, the team ran into opposition from those in the neighborhood that believe the arena would ruin the iconic views of the city and also adding to the already congested traffic. The cost to rehabilitate the pier has been a major concern as well.

The arena will instead be built in Mission Bay on 12 acres of land, bounded by 3rd Street, 16th Street, South Street and Terry Francois Boulevard. The Warriors purchased the land, just south of AT&T Park, from Salesforce.com. The 18,000-seat arena - which will be privately financed - will also be host to concerts, conventions, cultural events and family shows.

“We believe Mission Bay is a perfect fit,” said Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob. “It is a wonderful inland site in a dynamic part of the city that is convenient for fans from all over the Bay Area.”

The arena will be easily assessible by both public transportation and car. Muni’s KT line runs along 3rd Street and connects to BART. Caltrain is six blocks away. A new I-280 freeway connection at Mariposa Street will be just a block away and there are currently 9,000 existing parking spaces.

“We’ve said all along we wanted to create a spectacular cultural destination for the city and the entire region,” said Warriors co-owner Peter Guber. “This is about a shared cultural experience: going to a beautiful and inviting place to see a game, see a show, and attend a convention. It will be easily accessible, state of the art, digitally fit, and second to none.”

In addition to the arena, a 5.5-acre waterfront park will also be constructed. The park will be located across Terry Francois Boulevard and will feature water-oriented activities and large lawn areas, similar to how Marina Green in the Marina District is.

“We’ve spent the past two years listening,” said Warriors President and COO Rick Welts, who also dicussed the new plans with the San Francisco Business Times earlier Tuesday. “We’ve learned a lot. We’re proud of the plans we’ve put forward to date, and we’re thrilled to announce this great leap forward. We are looking forward to engaging with the neighborhood and, ultimately, making this site ‘Warriors Ground.’ This is our path to San Francisco."

“We are buying private property, but the city will also get a new 5.5-acre waterfront park,” said Lacob. “It’s a win-win for everyone.”

Terms of the deal with Salesforce.com were not disclosed. The transaction does not involve any naming or sponsorship rights.

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