Dear UCSF Community,
Today UCSF finalized agreements with San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and the Golden State Warriors that would protect patient safety at the UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay should the Warriors proposed sports and entertainment complex be approved and built on a site adjacent to our hospitals. As a result, the city and the Warriors are committed to actively mitigating traffic levels through a series of measures that support timely access to our hospitals by patients, visitors, and healthcare workers.
UCSF’s interests are protected through several mechanisms that include requirements built into the Warriors’ environmental impact report (EIR), a proposed city ordinance guaranteeing funding for traffic improvements, separate resolutions to be considered by the Port of San Francisco and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, and a private party contract between the Warriors and UCSF.
With these agreements in place, UCSF is announcing its support for the Warriors project. It was my hope that I could make this announcement at my State of the University Address earlier today, but all the details were not yet in place.
The agreements our team negotiated with the city and the Warriors accomplish three things of vital importance to the University and our patients:
- Create a dedicated Mission Bay Transportation Improvement Fund, fully funded by new revenue generated by the Warriors arena, which guarantees that financial resources will be available to manage the flow of visitors, traffic, and transit that will be generated by the arena. This agreement with the city is the first to dedicate most of the revenue from a major project to local mitigations. Mayor Ed Lee introduced legislation at the Board of Supervisors today to establish this Fund.
- Commit the Warriors to a cap on the scheduling of new, large, overlapping weeknight events if traffic caused by these events regularly exceeds predetermined standards. The cap, contained in the agreement between UCSF and the Warriors, works like this: If, despite the city’s best efforts, traffic during these large, overlapping events (meaning weeknight Giants home games and arena events of more than 12,500 attendees) exceed a predetermined threshold, the Warriors will cap future dual events at 12 per year. No other NBA arena operates under such conditions.
- Require a city-maintained Local Access Plan, designed to keep Owens and 4th streets in Mission Bay clear of event traffic and to facilitate access for local businesses and residents, hospital visitors, and employees. The agreements further stipulate the creation of off-site parking to the south of the arena. The San Francisco Port Commission is expected to approve locating that parking at Pier 70 and the former Western Pacific rail yard adjacent to Pier 80.
In July, UCSF publicly stated its support for the Warriors project provided that a binding agreement was in place to address traffic concerns when large, overlapping weeknight events occur at AT&T Park and the proposed arena and events center.
The next step is the completion of the EIR on the Warriors project and a robust public hearing process. The City’s Office of Community Investment and Infrastructure ultimately considers the project for approval.
I thank Mayor Ed Lee for his support of the negotiations and commitment to patient safety. My thanks also go to Warriors President Rick Welts for his personal involvement in the process.
While these agreements are vitally important, we still have work to do. Mission Bay and the Southeast sector of San Francisco are slated for additional development in the coming years, including further development on our own Mission Bay campus.
The agreements we negotiated with the city and the Warriors are aimed at alleviating traffic and transportation issues that are projected to be generated by the proposed arena once it is built and hosting events. They also guarantee UCSF a prime seat at the table to shape transportation policy in Mission Bay and help drive the large-scale investments that will allow our workers, patients, and other stakeholders to get to and from our Mission Bay campus in the years to come.
Sam Hawgood, MBBS
Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Distinguished Professor