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The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

August 8, 2013 at 6:17 PM

City stops arena work for non-payment

The City of Seattle Department of Planning and Development has placed a hold on the Sodo arena project because of about $47,000 in unpaid fees by investor Chris Hansen. A spokesman for the department said review work currently under way will not continue until the back due amount is paid. Hansen has until Aug. 25 to submit payment.

A spokesman for Hansen said an administrative oversight occurred because of summer travel and that the bill is being taken care of.

Hansen is paying for much of the preliminary design and permitting work on the planned new $290 million sports arena under an agreement reached in October with the city and King County. The city is currently completing a draft environmental impact statement that is due out Aug. 15, and working on a design review of the building plans.

The fee schedule compiled by DPD shows Hansen has racked up about $175,000 in costs since October related to the arena and has paid $128,000. A notice that a hold had been placed on the project was emailed Monday to Hansen’s land-use attorney, Jack McCullough, and a written statement mailed the same day.

Bills are due within two months or the city stops work, said spokesman Bryan Stevens. “In most cases, we’re paid once the project is placed on hold,” he said.

Under the agreement between Hansen, the city and county, Hansen will pay up to $5 million in city costs for the planning and permitting of the arena, if the project goes forward. Some of the permitting work is on hold as Hansen and other investors search for an NBA team. The agreement says the city won’t issue construction bonds to finance the project until a team is secured.

The local Longshore Workers Union has challenged the Sodo location for the project, saying an environmental review should have been completed before the site was selected. A Court of Appeals panel heard arguments in the case last month and could issue a ruling within the next few weeks.

Comments | Topics: Chris Hansen, Sodo arena

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