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The Cities of Arlington and Irving, TX are ready to lure the Stars and Mavericks if arena talks break down, according to this morning's FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM. Both teams have been negotiating with the City of Dallas for the last ten months. Ronnie Carter, son of Mavs' owner Don Carter, said last week the team hopes to conclude negotiations with Dallas by March 1, if there is no agreement, the teams will "welcome" talks with Arlington and Irving. Saturday, Lewisville, TX, residents rejected an initiative to raise sales taxes to fund a new arena for both teams. Irving councilman Jack Spurlock says his city has locations and financing plans: "We are not here playing a game. We are ready, we want them and we have everything to offer" (Ave & Dotson, FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 1/23).
DC officials visited Cleveland's new Gund Arena yesterday to get ideas for a new $180M downtown Washington facility before tomorrow's hearing by the DC Council's Economic Development Committee. Officials also revealed that DC's financial obligation to the project is expected to more than double. Bullets/Capitals owner Abe Pollin will pay all costs of building the arena, but the city is responsible for land acquisition and off-site development, now expected to cost $50M, according to DC Project Adviser Robert Moore. Moore said much of the cost increase is due to underestimated costs in relocating District office workers currently on the site (Howard Schneider, WASHINGTON POST, 1/24). DC Mayor Marion Barry wants to buy enough land surrounding the project to "make it available to private investors to build restaurants, office buildings and even housing." Barry: "Just think about it -- downtown, with things happening" (Jeanne Dewey, WASHINGTON TIMES, 1/24). PLAY BALL: RFK Stadium in Washington will not enter a lease agreement with either the UBL or expansion groups from Northern VA until one of those groups is awarded a team, according to RFK stadium General Manager Jim Dalrymple (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 1/24).