Austin MLS Stadium Information Session to be Held This Week

Austin MLS stadium McKalla Place rendering 2

On Thursday, officials will hold an information session on potential community benefits in a proposed Austin MLS stadium deal for relocating Columbus Crew SC

Before beginning its summer break, the Austin City Council approved two resolutions relating to McKalla Place, the city-owned site eyed by Precourt Sports Ventures for the proposed new stadium. That included a resolution directing the city manager to analyze the proposal and undertake negotiations with PSV while soliciting community engagement, along with another that allows staff to receive other proposals for McKalla Place.

The city council will host its first meeting after its current break on August 9, but city officials are moving forward with an Austin MLS stadium information session on Thursday. That session will be focused on associated community benefits that could come from the stadium proposal. More from the Austin American-Statesman:

Community benefits suggested in the PSV proposal include:

  • Cash contributions to local affordable housing nonprofit Foundation Communities, including $500,000 upfront for a new Waters Park Studio development and $125,000 annually.
  • One hundred full-time jobs averaging $50,000 per year and 800 part-time staffers at an average of $12 per hour.
  • Extensive youth soccer programming, including a free MLS academy, youth club scholarships, soccer camps and per-game ticket donations for local organizations.
  • Free use of the stadium for one Austin school district event per year.

The proposal also suggested terms of a $1 per year lease for use of the land, waiving property taxes and having the city pay for any off-site infrastructure improvements.

Council members have suggested further community benefits in exchange for the land, including fully funding a Capital Metro rail station at the site and providing onsite affordable housing.

Community benefits are one of the areas that officials are expected to consider closely as they evaluate the MLS proposal. PSV has proposed the construction of a $200 million stadium on McKalla Place in North Austin, with Crew SC investor-operator Anthony Precourt privately financing the facility in exchange for use of the land. The Crew could move to Austin as early as 2019, beginning what would be planned as a two-season stint at an existing facility in the area before moving into the new stadium in 2021. However, the club has not officially moved forward with relocation plans to this point.

Rendering courtesy Gensler Sports Practice.

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