Baseball’s Mariners say they don’t want NBA arena near them

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Seattle built the Mariners a lovely ballpark — Safeco Field — and now the Mariners don’t want a new NBA/NHL arena near their beautiful park.

That’s the gist of a letter set to the city by the team, as reported by the Associated Press.

The letter was sent from the team on Tuesday and signed by Mariners chairman Howard Lincoln. In the letter, Lincoln says the franchise supports the idea of the NBA returning to Seattle, but that an exhaustive examination of various sites for a new arena in the greater Seattle area needs to be conducted.

Why not put the new stadium near Safeco in Seattle’s official “stadium district?” Well it would bring a lot more traffic and create scheduling conflicts in the area where Safeco and the Mariners are now. The Mariners say it would take hundreds of millions of dollars to mitigate those.

Or, put another way: Right now we have our own room and I don’t want to have to share it with a brother or sister. A lot of cities bank on — or would kill to have — the people and synergy that multiple arenas in an area can create. It’s the kind of anchors that can revitalize and transform and area. But it’s inconvenient for the Mariners so they don’t want it.

As a refresher, San Francisco businessman Christopher Hansen owns land down there and has proposed a stadium where he puts up the land and about $290 million. The city of Seattle and other partners are trying to figure out where the other $100 million plus is going to come from to make this a reality. And that’s not even dealing with the not so little issue of getting an NBA team or NHL team to move there.

But that’s the dream. One the Mariners are doing their part to squash, apparently.