Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer has reiterated the NBA basketball team’s desire to leave Staples Center and build a new arena in Inglewood.
Last year, the Clippers entered into a three-year negotiating agreement with the City of Inglewood that will provide the team with a window to explore building a new facility.
The Clippers currently share Staples Center (pictured), in Downtown Los Angeles, with rival NBA team the Lakers and NHL ice hockey franchise the Los Angeles Kings.
Ballmer feels it is vital for the team to play in its own arena to maximise its potential. “We’re moving to Inglewood come hell or high water,” he said.
“We gotta have a house. So we’re working on a plan to get our own house. We want to get our own house. It turns out the way this works in LA, which is much beloved to me, that if you start now you might be done in six years.”
Ballmer was speaking at a meeting with Clippers fans and season ticket holders, whom he urged to contact their Assembly representative and state senator to urge approval of legislation that would speed up the process to allow the team to build its own arena.
The arena would have a capacity of 18,000 and would be built close to the new stadium currently under construction for Los Angeles’ two NFL American football teams, the Rams and Chargers.
The Clippers have played at Staples Center since 1999 and the team’s lease at the venue expires in 2024.
Image: David Jones