The now-$1-billion Golden State Warriors arena plan in San Francisco is now at $1.05 billion, according to a city memo, thanks to the increased projected costs of refurbishing the piers that it would sit on. A Warriors spokesperson denied that the cost overruns are quite as high as $50 million, but admitted that the pier work would cost more than the $120 million originally budgeted.
This is an issue in part because the proposed arena deal has the city fronting the money to redo the piers, and the Warriors repaying the money over time from arena revenues — but only up to $120 million. Which means that San Francisco would effectively be on the hook for cost overruns in shoring up the piers.
The San Francisco Chronicle also notes that things aren’t looking good for the team’s proposed 2017 arena opening, given that so many things are still up in the air:
The Warriors insist that their engineering reshuffle won’t delay a 2017 opening, but the team is months behind the project schedule set in November for financial agreements and completing environmental review.
Shifting dates is standard for big projects, [Warriors spokesperson P.J.] Johnston noted, and they still have time to complete everything before fall 2017. But there is little margin for error in a project that could face lawsuits and is also waiting on legislation in Sacramento that would endorse it as a public benefit, a finding needed for waterfront development.
A draft of the state-required environmental impact report was supposed to be released in June, according to the project schedule from November. Instead, that draft report won’t be ready until early next year, said Chris Kern, the senior city planner handling it. The Planning Commission was to vote on the final environmental report in December. That is not expected to happen until late 2014, Kern said. Construction and other permits, including from the Bay Conservation and Development Commission and the Army Corps of Engineers, can’t be granted until the environmental report is certified. The team is planning on construction lasting about 2 1/2 years.
In other words, while the project still has lots of political momentum, it’s still very early in the game. Don’t buy your San Francisco Warriors season tickets just yet.