With Authority | The Keys To The Chase Center

With Authority | The Keys To The Chase Center


with authority Aloha welcome to the most muscles in podcast in various sports live from inside the chase Center the first ever podcast recorded inside the Warriors chase Center no hard hats no vests but we have the key to the place [Music] it looks like it came out of a cartoon this is we’ve already this key is with authority I’ll tell you that this is fun we had the opportunity to join Rick welts the Warriors team president for the the key presentation he actually opened the door to the chase center with the media well only only uh only us exclusive to ABC 7 and we’ve been here I don’t know how many times is I think my fifth time and the building is almost almost complete it is amazing I mean we took a quick gander at everything it’s it’s very close to being done it looks really impressive you know honestly the most impressive thing I might have seen since we’ve been here several times the plaza out front where you can just walk up watch a game for free on this giant screen really laying our eyes on that for the first time it’s crazy it did not look anything like that last time we’re here the other thing that’s fairly amazing I just want to be in here one time Casey mentioned the media blackout we went into the arena bowl area where the court will be but they have a gigantic Jumbotron that retracts it goes up into the roof I mean they have every Bell and whistle and it’s just it’s it’s unbelievable to think of what this place is gonna be like when its warriors Lakers is the first preseason game that will ever be played in this building but for big events this place is going to rock and it’s it’s just mind-blowing all that we’ve seen through the progression from when it was just strictly dirt and hardhats and here’s what imagine what this is gonna be and yeah yeah our first time here it really was kind of a pit in the ground they hadn’t even really started building upward yet I remember we walked into what the theater lobby would later become and that was even the first time Rick welts had been there so I mean to see it go from basically like a we’re hole in the earth to what it is now is crazy and we’ve come here a couple times you know every few months or so and I mean it’s unrecognizable every time and this last iteration is just beyond belief and I think it’s gonna be even better when they do the actual opening because well for one thing we won’t have all the construction crews sawing in the background while we’re doing interviews but these guys are working hard to try to meet the September 6th date for the first concert with Metallica and the symphony in here and I think people are just gonna be blown away even when they just walk up through the plaza and one thing that’s unique about this building is they’re actually going to be two front entrances once it’s going to be the front one’s gonna be in the back but for for concerts and smaller venue events that’ll be the back side the front side with the jumbotron and just this gigantic expanse it reminds me a little bit of Jurassic Park in Toronto where they went a couple thousand people outside who don’t have tickets to the game watching and it’s just gonna be a great community location whether it’s basketball or whatever is going on in the building yeah and even if there’s big events like football games or are like World Cup games or things like that they’re saying that they will have that open for people to come just hang out and chill with their friends and a bunch of people in a big screen it’s pretty cool so I mean really I know we have Rick Wells coming in just a moment but I’m kind of like at a loss for words looking at this just knowing what it looked like the first time we were here it’s amazing it’s amazing what a couple of billion dollars will buy you these days so without further ado here’s the Warriors team president Rick wells this is really exciting minutes ago Warriors team president Rick welts was presented with the keys still have the keys have the key this is the key to the chase center right here this is the one the golden key we should call it we actually there is a gigantic I like that can you describe your emotions right now as this is all coming to fruition and years and years and years of planning has finally resulted in this well as you can hear we still got some work going on yeah but last night about 10 o’clock we got word from the fire department that the building was ours so today for the first time were operating Chase Center and you know looking back the last really eight years to think about a number of people in our organization who have had two jobs and not only running an NBA basketball season but then planning for this amazing building in San Francisco the will of ownership to actually take the leap and make this happen without a penny of tax dollars all of this like is a monumental project that all comes together at the same time and I’m the one who got to open the door but I was opening that door for thousands of people who have worked to make this thing happen now this is a process that really truly began officially in 2012 I mean with all the ups and downs you guys had to go through what is your main like your most positive memory from all this and maybe the most after this process it’s a long process yeah I would say maybe at the groundbreaking was when we knew it was real I don’t know if you know we staged kind of an interesting dancing cranes and acrobats and everything else that but it was important that we did that because we were trying to signal something about what Chase Center was going to be we find a signal that this was going to be something special we’re gonna do things that were a little bit maybe unexpected and and bring things here that hadn’t been here before so that was probably you know one of the most exhilarating moments because we actually put a shovel in the ground and started construction yeah what about trying obviously still continuing yes yeah well it was you know we originally announced we’re moving to piers 30 32 and we were we spent two years planning to add that project and politically we got caught up in a firestorm about waterfront development and it wasn’t clear that we were going to be able to complete we had hired we hired actually a campaign staff we were going to go to the ballot and ask San Francisco voters if they wanted the project there so that was a little bit of desperation that was like oh we’re really going to be able to get things done I was really the only time in the whole tenor of the project I think that we had to doubt this is possible to do so I guess that’s the low point have you ever stopped to think about how many man-hours you have spent personally in making the decisions flooring faucets retracting Jumbotrons all sorts of decisions that I mean there’s thousands of decisions that have to be made on just like a regular home remodel it seems then when you’re talking about this it’s got to be just overwhelming fortunately I’m not really good at math so I never have never had to figure that out but think about it for most of this year we’ve had 1500 workers on site now women 1,500 people like I know what to do every I have no idea that you know they all show up for work and like how do we know it’s time to put that wall up I have I’m fascinated by the whole project it’s incredibly complicated construction just think about it every square inch of this place is designed where J Center will never be replicated 800,000 plus for a foot building on many levels every instance custom will so the complicated nature of building things like this is mind-boggling for for people who really don’t understand construction has there ever been a moment did you ever get it like a phone call late at night when it came down to what what grout are we using for that I mean what what which tile are we putting on this day we do exactly what no repaint that was there any of those moments along the way fortunately the grout people don’t work out late at night so I didn’t have a grout problem okay now the late night calls were all about most of that political strategy and we’re facing a big vote the next day or something had changed or some media person had written some ridiculous story that we had to respond to Larry probably yeah those were late night calls though you know the construction during the day is pretty pretty measured and pretty on point they know what they’re doing but but the kind of the political strategy around it making sure that we could navigate all the hurdles that San Francisco places before a project like this to get it done the way San Francisco wants it done mm-hmm those are the ones that win a late night cause this is the first time that you’ve been in here that we’ve been in here without having to wear hard hats right construction here this is the first time you’ve had the keys you Klugman this is the first podcast that’s ever been done in here also true I mean what do you think though your emotions are gonna be like when you see the people getting to take this into the first I’m not that not the clowns like us but the real actual fans that paid here to come to see Metallica and the SF Symphony on September 6 yeah I think I do think about that all the time and I think that you know I can’t decide where I want to be right out in the main plaza they’re watching people arrive and maybe being in this Lobby watching the faces of people who come in for the first time and see you then obviously the first concert be amazing I think I have the same emotions on the first or October play it’s same feelings all over again so it’s good be a fun couple of months you’ve done so much in your professional career I mean you work for the league office we’ve done previous interviews where we talked about your brainstorming and coming up with all-star weekend which is an amazing success how do you look at this LOL so by the way three championships that’s part of it when you look at this building as part of your legacy where do you think that’ll be because this is going to be a San Francisco treasure for decades and you know I appreciate the accolades but literally there are thousands of people who had to do the right thing to make this happen and had to had to deal with the politician who’s having to deal with the construction had to deal with traffic every aspect of this so you know I I think for the city of San Francisco as well as the whole Bay Area this is going to be a gift and is it yet literally because the Warriors have been able to pay for the whole thing it doesn’t happen other places and it will be a legacy for a lot of people it’s a legacy for me really I don’t think we’d be sitting here talking if Ed Lee wasn’t so passionate about bringing the Warriors back to San Francisco he won’t be here right to see it the building open and there are others who have who have passed away in the time that we have been doing this Jennifer Matz an unknown City person who was the point person for the city for two years who succumbed to cancer a few years ago so I’ll be thinking about all those people but I am I’m pretty confident that you know San Francisco and the entire Bay Area will be having this as their favorite new gathering place for a long long time to come now you told a cool story we did a little walk and talk before this with you and Larry but a really cool story about how when you acquired the land this was actually land that was owned by Marc Benioff right so I mean how much did that help you greets this deal get it done quickly and obviously the fact that it’s completely privately financed in this state is a huge accomplishment yeah it’s an important question because Mission Bay is governed differently than every other part of the city like there was master plan developed for every block of Mission Bay years ago and there’s a commission in Mission Bay called OC I that governs all of the development here and this site while an arena wasn’t contemplated obviously was a commercial site from day one so to be able to get these four city blocks on private property not public report properly which uncomplicate things a lot and makes it much more expensive yeah was a godsend because there is no other eleven and a half acre site in San Francisco where this could have been done so it was a little bit of luck probably a lot of life and a guy like Marc Benioff who has a vision for San Francisco that included the Warriors playing exhibits is going and he he was the one who picked up the phone and made the offer that that made this property available and made the project possible now I know you’ve taken a lot of steps for the traffic situation recently you announced that if you have a chase center ticket you also can ride the Muni how much do you think that will help as you said it mean it had to be in this spot did you hear what he just said that’s awesome like it is cool you have a ticket to an event at Jason today I can ride immunity for free all right that’s the way to get here there’s 200 feet from where we’re standing is where the Muni stop is that will drop you off the chase Senate I don’t know if you’ve heard but traffic can be really difficult in San Francisco big transportation is the peanut it’s going to get better a year from now it would be a lot better it’ll be when we open cos a Central Subway of the open and that will link the whole BART system to the Central Subway at Powell Street and the new subway comes down the same line we’ll land 200 feet from awesome store so for the for the entire Bay Area a year from now maybe six months from now you’ll have that opportunity so but it’s not just public transportation obviously we have 300 Vike belly spots if you want to come and ride your bike here people can actually walk to this site which of course they weren’t able to do in our prior site so we have we’re all modes of transportation will be available here 18,000 seats for a full warriors game compared to 43,000 a few blocks up the street at at the giant stadium so that gives you an idea of kind of the relative size of the crowds we’re trying to manage but so much thought and energy has gone into that and it will be constantly evolving depending upon what new projects are happening what the traffic considerations are but public transportation should be key and you get to ride for free to any event not just Warriors game any event at Chase Center I mean I know you’ve got to run really soon here but the building still is not complete complete you heard that you know I noticed I have no but I was wondering and I have a feeling I know what the answer to this is going to be is there one part of the building that makes you smile the most yeah I think it’s adjacent to where we’re sitting right now we fought for budget and plot with the but to get amazing entrance experience and we have to we have one we’re sitting adjacent to right now on the opposite side doing very unusual for and that will boot that we call our theater entrance because we’ll be introducing a smaller two thousand five thousand seat theater within chase center we’ll be talking more about as time goes on a year from now sir I think the entrance experience will be where people will go wow this is more than I ever could have expected and different than I ever imagined the sports arena to look like would it be accurate to say that the Warriors owner Joe lekha basically gave you an unlimited budget and you exceeded it not his intention but I will say for Joe and Peter the reason they’re the kind of owners you want to have on your team hundred times during the project when we were a part of the project that was far exceeding what we had planned to spend it was always the option brought to Joe and Pierre here’s what we were gonna do we could do this for less money not one of those conversations resulted in a change from every one of those conversations was know we’re building the building we set out to build the vision we set out to have and that’s the building we ended up building Wow with everything this team has done with everything you’ve built here do you feel like you’re starting to get close to maybe a moment when you can just like this is the second beginning right and so we have some ideas you may be hearing about the next couple of years of you know things that we think we can do here one is a hotel that’s going to be located actually on the Thrive city campus here where chase centers located which you know we’re going through the starting the approval process right now imagine four that’s just for NBA players easy oversize everything in it it’s oversized let me shower the bed everything else would never have to go outside to leave your hotel to walk into your locker room so that’s an immediate project we have right in front of us but we’ve got some other ideas we’ll look forward to sharing with you in the future – well thanks so much for your time this I don’t know how many tours we’ve done already but it just gets better and better and better every time we come down here so here oh absolutely I’m gonna be here for everything okay I guess like and I just run I know there’s a locksmith I can I make a duplicate I just want to be able to sneak in when a you know late oh look at the concert I just anyway this is this is your key yes thank you so much for your time thanks brick well where’s president thank you again our special thanks to warriors president Rick wells not just for this but for all of his tours because he’s been tremendous with us giving his time and educating us about the process as they’ve gone through every iteration of this amazing building and it’s just gonna be fun to come down here and see event after event and of course obviously the Warriors of the primary tenant but there’s gonna be so much going on here this is it’s going to be it in some ways it’ll be similar I think to when the Giants fall apart Oracle Park which started out as PAC Valley when because there was nothing in this Mission Bay area beforehand and the baseball stadium was kind of the the anchor tenant in this area and now you have this with office buildings and when you heard Rick talking about a hotel that they’re talking about which is would also be amazing right across the way with water views I’m sure so here we are and I guess we have to give the gigantic key back so I’m gonna put this in my pocket I think it’ll fit going to be pretty incredible not conspicuous at all walking around with that my pant leg speak that’s to be be black now we can’t show you any ones that are – yes all right thanks for joining us on this edition of with authority so uh with authority

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