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LAWSUIT PUTS SONICS' NEW ARENA ON HOLD

Seattle SuperSonics owner Barry Ackerley has put plans for a new $100 million arena on hold pending resolution of a lawsuit filed by project opponents, a spokeswoman said.

Admitting that the Ackerley family company's plans for a February groundbreaking were "ambitious," Susan Mortenson said Tuesday there are no longer firm dates for either the start of construction or completion of the arena.Ackerley has asked to meet with mayor Norm Rice later this week or early next week to discuss changes in the construction schedule, Mortenson said.

Ackerley had said he hoped to finish a new 18,000-seat arena for his National Basketball Association team in time for the 1993-1994 season. The sports and entertainment complex is slated to be built south of the Kingdome, where baseball's Seattle Mariners and football's Seattle Seahawks play.

She said the designs and planning for the project are on hold pending a ruling by the state Supreme Court on a lawsuit filed by arena opponents, and completion of an environmental review by the city.