Clippers owners Steve Ballmer announced an agreement Tuesday to purchase the Forum from Madison Square Garden Co., eliminating a major hurdle in his plans to build an arena for the team nearby.
The famed Inglewood venue will be purchased by a newly created company called CAPSS LLC, a joint venture of Ballmer and Clippers Vice Chairman Dennis Wong. The Forum, the former home of the Lakers that was renovated to be used primarily as a music venue, will continue to operate as such, according to the announcement.
The $400 million deal will also resolve legal challenges mounted by MSG against Ballmer’s plan to build a new arena for the Clippers just blocks away from the Forum. MSG had sued the Clippers and the city of Inglewood, saying the new arena would represent a competing venue, violating its operating agreements with the city.
According to the announcement from CAPSS, all current Forum employees will be offered employment under the new owner.
“This is an unprecedented time, but we believe in our collective future,” Ballmer said in a statement. “We are committed to our investment in the city of Inglewood, which will be good for the community, the clippers and our fans.”
The two venues will offer “coordinated programming” that will result in improved traffic management from basketball games and concerts, according to CAPPS.
“We know traffic is something that many Inglewood residents worry about,” said Chris Meany of the Wilson Meany development firm working on the new arena project. “While we have gone to great lengths to provide an unprecedented traffic-management plan for the new basketball arena, this acquisition provides a much greater ability to coordinate and avoid scheduling events at the same time at both venues.”