When the American Airlines Center opens July 28 in Dallas, it will do so with the dubious honor of being the nation's most expensive arena. What started out as a $230 million project has nearly doubled to $420 million. With a 19,200 seating capacity, the American Airlines Center will be larger than planned. The Staples Center had been the most expensive arena costing $400 million.
Lucky for Dallas, the city capped its contribution from hotel and rental car taxes at $125 million. Now, Tom Hicks, owner of the NHL Dallas Stars and Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA Dallas Mavericks, have agreed to kick an additional $295 million to cover upgrades and enhancements that includes making it completely accessible to the physically disabled, incorporate new technologies, have better acoustical systems, include more food concession stands, increase its seating capacity and number of restrooms.
"We decided to build a world-class facility that would be the appropriate showcase for our two teams," Hicks told The Dallas Morning News.