Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob recently announced plans to allow sports fans to physically spectate games at Chase Center in the next season while maintaining safety protocols for the coronavirus pandemic.
Lacob designed and submitted the plan last week to state and local officials. It wrote that the new arena would open at 50% capacity. It would also require every spectator to be tested for the COVID-19 virus before being given entry to the stadium. Attendees must submit sufficient documents that prove they tested negative for the coronavirus within the last 48 hours.
A spokesman for the Golden State Warriors said that Lacob’s plans would cost the team about $30 million. Lacob added that despite the loss of finances, he believes it would be the right way to move forward with the pandemic. The executive wished to make the area safe enough that he could bring his family over without fears of them being infected with the deadly virus.
Lacob said that public health authorities would be the ones to approve the request ultimately. The San Francisco Department of Public Health acknowledged receipt of the proposal and is currently assessing and reviewing the information while monitoring the status of the coronavirus pandemic within the state.
San Francisco Supervisor Matt Haney said on Friday that the world is moving in favor of rapid testing. The official added he would prefer to have schools be equipped with the capability to have their students be rapidly tested. Haney expressed his gratitude to the Warriors for closely cooperating with the University of California, San Francisco, but noted that the proposal would have to be studied extensively to see if it is safe to implement.
The Warriors get massive revenue from having supported physically spectate games. The team hoped to offset the cost of the Chase Center, which totaled about $1.4 billion, from consistent revenue. Lacob estimated that last season, the team lost the opportunity to earn more than $50 million, the Times Herald Online reported.
Lacob called his plan “Operation DubNation” and would cover the season beginning December 22. The idea could allow the Warriors to host games for about 9,000 fans in every single game. The process would use PCR tests, which are more accurate and more expensive than antigen tests.
On March 11, the National Basketball Association (NBA) suspended its season with the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. The agency ran its final games, allowing only a limited number of teams to play in the regular season.
The league on Wednesday released a memo addressed to teams that fans seated within 30 feet of the court must be tested for the COVID-19 virus during the upcoming season.
Lacob’s proposal comes as the United States has broken its daily record of new cases, reporting more than 150,000 infections, Biz Journals reported.
The Warriors’ executive thought of the idea due to his belief that the association would not be able to sustain itself without their supporters for more than a year. He said that if fans are not allowed to spectate next year, a lot of people in the industry would be severely affected and have financial difficulties.
While using PCR testing to filter out potential positive infections, the association would also equip the Chase Center with a top-tier air filtration system. The machinery would allow the area to rid itself of viruses that could be lurking in the environment.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NBA released guidelines that only allow a limited number of people to attend games in select markets physically. California limited fans who are going to sporting events. Lacob hopes public health officials approve his proposal so that they could prove the concept of having a safe venue for entertainment and sporting events, The Score reported.