AUSTIN (KXAN) — A new study shows Austin could support a number of professional sports. According to the American City Business Journals, there is enough money to back an NFL, NBA, NHL or MLS team. The study found Austin has a total personal income of $84 billion, and $58 billion of that is available as potential disposable income to go toward a pro sports team. But the study did not consider the local issues related to bringing a pro sports team to Austin. One of the biggest challenges has been finding a location for a stadium.
University of Texas officials are already trying to decide where to put a new basketball arena. That is because the Frank Erwin Center is slated to eventually be torn down to make way for new additions to the Dell Medical School.
The City of Austin has already expressed interest in bringing a Major League Soccer team to town. The Austin Aztex recently moved up to the pro division of the United Soccer League with an eye on being part of an expansion plan to the MLS. Last year, the Austin City Council directed the city manager to look at whether it’s feasible to bring an MLS franchise here. The city manager was also asked to look at potential sites for a soccer stadium.
Major League Soccer officials prefer sites downtown and say they plan to expand to 24 teams by 2020. San Antonio is also making a push for an expansion team, while Miami has soccer legend David Beckham leading their expansion efforts. Minneapolis was awarded the league’s 23rd franchise last month.