In the midst of one of the Golden State Warriors' best playoff runs in recent memory, the team just unveiled updated plans for a new arena that would be located on Piers 30-32 in San Francisco. The plan has been highly controversial, as environmental groups like the Sierra Club and Save the Bay have called on the team to build on existing land instead of on a public pier. Architects from Snøhetta and AECOM sought to address those concerns in their new design by slightly reducing the building's height and making over 50 percent of the pier space open and accessible to the public.
Last fall, the Warriors announced plans to move from their current home in Oakland’s Oracle Arena across the bay to Piers 30-32 in San Francisco. The proposal immediately raised concern that a new stadium on the city’s busy waterfront would obstruct views of the bay and would create gridlock along the Embarcadero. To address those concerns, Snøhetta and AECOM have designed a very minimal structure that “doesn’t have lot of visual chaos,’’ as lead architect Craig Dykers put it.
The new design includes more open space for the public to enjoy than previous designs, and according to the plan about 50 percent of the land on Piers 30-32 would be open to the public. One of the stadium’s most interesting features is a large window on the building’s eastern side that would make it possible for spectators to see the Bay Bridge from inside the arena. According to the designers, the roof of the new arena will be covered with a large LED lighting display that can be used to project different images. The new plan also calls for fewer parking spaces than the previous design, and also less retail space. A new fire station was added to the plan, along with a deep-water berth for cruise ships.
But opponents still think the Warriors are moving too fast. “Why are we rushing this process?” said Buffy Martin Tarbox of the San Francisco Waterfront Alliance. “This is a massive arena that is going to be built on our Bay and is going to be around for decades, so we have to make sure everything is done correctly.”