DALLAS – The Dallas Mavericks notched a victory over the New York Knicks on Wednesday night at American Airlines Center.
But earlier in the day, they also walked away triumphant at Dallas City Hall when council members approved a re-zoning request for the Mavs. That approval set the wheels in motion for the possibility of the Mavs building a new arena in the popular Design District on Stemmons Freeway, directly across the freeway from AAC.
Fighting years of less and less parking at their current home due in large part to the abundances of apartments/townhomes being built nearby, owner Mark Cuban would like to give his fans some parking relief.
A new arena, Cuban claims, is the perfect resolution.
"It's really disappointing that every year we lose parking spaces and it becomes more difficult for AAC attendees to come to events,’’ Cuban said prior to Wednesday’s 103-95 victory over the Knicks. "If the (AAC) lease were shorter, we would be gone sooner just because we need to put our fans first.
"And our neighbors certainly aren't doing that for us.’’
The Mavs’ lease at AAC expires on July 29, 2031. And Cuban said he’ll wait at least six years before making a final decision on if he’ll leave AAC when the lease expires.
"If there would have been more respect for our fans, it’s probably not something I would even look at for 10 years,’’ Cuban said of the possibility of building a new arena. "But that’s not the case and it continues to get worse despite our protests.’’
The Mavs’ new practice facility – which opened this past October -- resides on 14 acres which Cuban owns. That’s the property the City Council approved the re-zoning request which will allow for the building of the new arena.
Cuban always had bigger plans for the property other than just a practice facility.
Meanwhile, drivers used to be able to get a clear view of AAC while riding on Stemmons Freeway. But with all of the apartments, townhomes and restaurants nearby – those took away parking spots -- fans almost have to be right upon AAC to find it.
And the parking quagmire has been a turnoff to fans, with some of them turning to public transportation to help alleviate the situation.
"Some of the companies that were originally involved with the development of the AAC are some of the neighbors that are creating difficulties for us,’’ Cuban said. "I don't know if there are any caveats in the agreements that allow us to contest the lease.
"I don't expect to find anything, but we’ll look at it.’’