Inglewood City Council OKs negotiations for new Clippers arena

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Inglewood City Council unanimously voted in favor Thursday of a negotiating agreement on the development of a "premier and state-of-the-art" basketball arena with seating capacity of 18,000 to 20,000.

The property is located on about 22 acres of land between Prairie and Yukon Avenue and bordered on the north by Century Boulevard. Much of the land is owned by the city of Inglewood, according to city documents.

Inglewood City Council members spoke almost universally in favor of the plan. "Inglewood is not going to be the place to drive through, but the place to drive to, and this is part of that," one Inglewood city councilman said.

Mayor James Butts touted Inglewood's rise as a premier host for event venues in the state of California, citing initial doubts from some about whether other venues, like The Forum, would succeed.

"It's a promise to explore where a relationship will go," said Butts of the agreement. The total term of the agreement is three years. By the end of that time, construction drawings should be ready and construction should get underway shortly, Butts said.

Butts said he expects the arena to be built within five years. "This, to me, changes the center of gravity in Los Angeles County to Inglewood," Butts said.

The site will likely include a state-of-the-art arena, a training facility and team offices. The construction of the arena will be privately financed, according to Butts.

WATCH: Clippers executive responds to news that Inglewood arena will move forward

EMBED More News Videos

Representatives for the team responded to news that Inglewood's city council voted to move ahead with the plan for a new arena.

The location is across the street from a planned new stadium for the Los Angeles Chargers.

The team's lease at Staples Center runs through 2024.

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer purchased the team in 2014 and for the last year has been searching for a site to build the team its own arena. He reportedly is expected to finance the stadium on his own.

"I have said from day one that we need to plan for the future. This agreement helps us do that by expanding our options," Ballmer said in a statement after the vote.
Copyright © 2022 KABC Television, LLC. All rights reserved.