San Antonio Spurs consider a downtown move

Source confirms “informal and preliminary” talks with team and City of San Antonio

SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Spurs are considering a move from the county-owned AT&T Center on the East Side to the city’s downtown, a source has confirmed to KSAT.

There are “informal and preliminary” conversations between the Spurs and the City of San Antonio about what will happen when the team’s AT&T Center lease ends in 2032, said a City Hall source familiar with the talks. Though those talks include whether a downtown move may be feasible, the source said none of the hard details, like locations or financing, have been nailed down.

However, the source said a public bond is not part of the current discussions.

The feeling at City Hall, the source said, is that the talks are another indication of the Spurs’ desire to stay in San Antonio.

The franchise’s intentions over a potential move to Austin have been a persistent source of fan speculation as the team tries to expand its fan base by playing a limited number of “home” games each year away from the AT&T Center, including Austin.

Spurs Sports and Entertainment Chairman Peter J. Holt has reassured fans and local officials the team is here to stay in San Antonio “por vida.” The organization has also set up a $500 million research and training facility, “The Rock at La Cantera,” on the far Northwest Side.

The source had not yet heard of any discussion about what would happen with the AT&T Center, which the Spurs lease from Bexar County, if the team were to move to a new stadium. The deal lasts into 2032, and the team would face fines of up to $124 million, depending on the year, if it were to break the lease.

A county spokeswoman said the Spurs organization has not yet sent anything, formally or informally, to the county manager’s office or the commissioner’s court as a whole about a move downtown.

A source in Bexar County Judge Peter Sakai’s office said they were unaware of any formal or informal discussions.

KSAT emailed a Spurs Sports & Entertainment spokesman requesting comment Monday afternoon but did not immediately hear back.

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About the Author:

Garrett Brnger is a reporter with KSAT 12.