AUSTIN, Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - Austin is officially getting a soccer stadium.
Wednesday, the city and Precourt Sports Ventures completed their stadium agreement as part of bringing major league soccer to Austin. The construction will be privately funded by Precourt Sports Ventures; the 20,000 seat stadium will be owned by the city.
While many are eager for MLS to come to Austin some are worried about the potential impact to the surrounding areas of the stadium. A quiet plot of land will eventually be a stadium filled with cheering fans. “It means it's a reality, it means Austin is getting its own major league team and we are thrilled to be coming to Austin,” said David Greeley the President for Precourt Sports Ventures.
The final agreement on the future soccer stadium to be built off McKalla place.
“All the dominoes are in place for us to begin to construct the stadium we have the ground breaking in the 2nd half of 2019,” said Greeley
Included in the agreement:
- $550,000 in annual rent payments paid to the City by PSV, on top of capital reserve fund contributions made by PSV
- Net-¬positive contribution to the City’s annual operating budget according to the City’s estimates
- No new or higher taxes for taxpayers with this redevelopment
- More than $6.7 million of support for youth soccer programs, including clinics, camps, scholarships, equipment and gear donations, as well as the repair and construction of soccer fields and futsal courts
- Nearly $4.0millionin direct contributions to Foundation Communities to build affordable housing at McKalla Place or another mutually agreed upon location
- $2.43 million in charitable contributions and an additional 2,500 volunteer hours to Austin charitable organizations
- $3.64 million in direct contribution to Cap Metro over 15 years
- Private funding of site preparation and off-¬site infrastructure costs estimated at $3.0 million
- Free open park, communal spaces and performance areas in a park-¬deficient neighborhood
- Rent-free use of the facility by the City and affiliated public sector entities for civic-oriented events
- Off-site traffic control, emergency responders and litter pickup on game and event nights-paid by PSV
- Opportunities for local, on-site food and beverage sales
- City retains ownership of the land and stadium and has no responsibility for cost overruns
Business owners nearby are happy to see a major league sport come to Austin.
“I’m excited; I’m really excited. I’m a sports guy and I like the idea of them being here I think it adds a dimension to the city that's kind of neat I like it,” said Gabriel Trinidad the Lighting Inc. general manager.
While Trinidad is eager to see some games, his business is next to where the stadium will be built and worries about the impact on the already bad traffic. “We struggle now, if you look up and down the street the traffic trying to get in and out of our businesses it's a challenge I don't know if there's a plan or if they will help businesses on game day,” said Trinidad. This issue was brought up many times when initial talks of bringing MLS to the ATX began, so far there is no concrete plan.
The expected completion date of the stadium is the spring of 2021 around the time both MLS and Precourt Sports Ventures expect a new MLS expansion team to begin playing.