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New law means Seattle Storm might get dedicated practice space

Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird shows the WNBA trophy to some of her teammates as green and gold confetti falls around them.
Chris O'Meara
The Associated Press file
A cascade of green and gold confetti falls as Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird shows the WNBA championship trophy to her teammates after their win on Oct. 6, 2020, in Bradenton, Fla. The 2020 victory was the team's fourth WNBA title.

When it comes to time on the court, the Seattle Storm — four-time national champions with some of the best players in the WNBA — currently competes for practice time with college students at Seattle Pacific University.

Now, legislation signed Tuesday will allow for indoor sports and recreation buildings in Interbay, just south of Ballard, to be five times larger, increasing the cap from 10,000 square feet to 50,000 square feet. That makes way for the development of a new practice facility suitable for one of the most decorated sports teams in the region.

The investment increases gender equity in the city, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan explained during a news conference Tuesday.

“We’ve seen this city move almost heaven and earth to support our male sports teams,” she said just hours before the Seattle Kraken hockey team began its first season.

General interest in women’s sports has historically been low and meant less money. But that’s changed, Storm co-owner Ginny Gilder said.

“That we’re willing to take this financial risk is an indicator that we believe that women’s sports is being embraced by the greater community and see the value of supporting women athletes.”

The organization is working with architects to design the facility, but no construction or completion date has been set.

Storm co-owner Lisa Brummel said the new facility is critical to the future of the franchise.

“When you have a dedicated facility for world-class athletes, soon to be hall of famers, and you let them have it where they can practice from morning to night, they can talk about how they want to bring others along with them,” Brummel said. “They can further their image as a role model and they can continue to contribute to our community.”

Updated: October 13, 2021 at 3:52 PM PDT
Audio added.
Mayowa Aina covers cost-of-living and affordability issues in Western Washington. She focuses on how people do (or don't) make ends meet, impacts on residents' earning potential and proposed solutions for supporting people living at the margins of our community. Get in touch with her by emailing