The summer of 2019 has been good to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The acquisitions of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George not only cemented the Clippers as a legitimate championship threat, but has elevated them to the biggest talking point in Los Angeles at the moment. And on Friday, the Clippers had even bigger news to announce.
Early Friday morning, the Clippers unveiled renderings for a brand new arena and entertainment center in Inglewood. If the city name sounds familiar, that’s because it is: Inglewood was the longtime home of the Los Angeles Lakers when they played at the Forum.
The proposed arena (which will be privately financed) will be fan focused, and will also host community and retail facilities, a training center and the team’s basketball and business operations.
Clippers owner and chairman Steve Ballmer spared no expense when it came to talking about what his vision was for the new arena.
“My goal is simple. I want the Clippers to have the best home in all of sports,” said Ballmer. “What that means to me is an unparalleled environment for players, for fans, for sponsors and for the community of Inglewood. Our goal is to build a facility that re-sets fans’ expectations while having a transformative impact on the city we will call home.”
The proposed project will be located on West Century Boulevard between South Prairie Avenue and South Yukon Avenue, directly underneath the flight path of the Los Angeles International Airport.
“Inglewood is a diverse, dynamic community blessed with a skilled workforce, emerging infrastructure and a bold economic blueprint for the future,” said Gillian Zucker, Clippers President of Business Operations. “In addition to the thousands of jobs this facility will create for the local community, we are equally committed to working with our new neighbors in the continuing renaissance developing in the City of Inglewood.”
The proposed project is expected to create an estimated 10,000 construction jobs and more than 1,500 permanent jobs, with local hire components in place to fill 30% of available construction jobs with local labor and 35% of the available arena operation jobs with local residents. When completed, the complex will generate an estimated $268 million in economic activity for Inglewood annually, and more than $190 million in new tax revenue from 2020-2045. That revenue will help support vital city services such as schools, parks, libraries and police and fire stations.
The new campus will achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions through a combination of carbon offset credits and sustainable design features, which will include indoor/outdoor “sky gardens.” These landscaped areas for food and beverage will be accessible from every concourse level. The complex also envisions a multi-purpose plaza complete with concert stage, community basketball courts and space for the community to gather and watch everything from Clippers Playoff games to movie premieres on a supersized LED screen.
The project is being spearheaded by Wilson Meany, a developer heralded for its transformative mixed-use residential, retail, office and master-planned properties.
“We challenged the architects and designers on this project to create a landmark facility that exceeds current environmental standards and they have surpassed expectations,” said Chris Meany of Wilson Meany. “The new Clippers arena demonstrates that environmental protection and economic development need not be mutually exclusive.”
The proposed completion date for the arena is 2024, which is the same year that the Clippers’ lease with Staples Center is set to expire.