UCSF nurses union comes out against S.F. Warriors arena

By J.K. Dineen : sfgate – excerpt – (video)

The Golden State Warriors could face some unexpected opposition in their drive to build an arena in Mission Bay: nurses.

On Monday, the California Nurses Association, a union that represents 900 UCSF nurses, came out against the plan for an 18,500-seat arena across the street from the new UCSF Medical Center on the southern edge of Mission Bay.

In a statement, the nurses union cited “impacts on access to care, patient health and the ability of patients, family members and health professionals to access Mission Bay’s hospitals and clinics in gridlock traffic.”

At a news conference Monday, three nurses expressed reservations about the Warriors’ plan, although they all admitted that they were unfamiliar with the details of the team’s recently released 800-page environmental impact report, which analyzes the arena’s potential effects on traffic and parking.

Backed by Mayor Ed Lee and San Francisco’s political establishment, the Warriors’ Mission Bay arena plan faced minimal public opposition until April, when a mostly anonymous group of UCSF donors and wealthy biotech executives announced it would fight the proposal. The group, the Mission Bay Alliance, has hired no fewer than four law firms and has vowed to spend millions of dollars on legal challenges.

While the Mission Bay Alliance’s legal threats have not eroded support for the development at City Hall, concerns voiced by rank-and-file nurses could help bolster the case against the basketball arena in the court of public opinion.

“Delay of care is a big concern for our nurses,” CNA member Lili Cooper said at Monday’s news conference… 

“The city is planning to tackle potential traffic jams through beefed-up public transit and a “traffic separation” plan aimed at funneling arena-bound cars onto certain streets while hospital and neighborhood vehicles are routed onto others.”… (more)

And which of our neighborhood streets would the SFMTA be re-routing traffic that is not already overwhelmed? Do they plan to bulldoze a new thoroughfare through a residential neighborhood? There are no streets around Mission Bay that are not already impacted by the traffic jams. And the trains and buses are already jammed with long lines of commuters and sports fans jostling for seats.

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