Sta­dium details to be ex­plained at meet­ing

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - By Chris Bils Amer­i­can-States­man Cor­re­spon­dent

The de­bate sur­round­ing a Ma­jor League Soc­cer sta­dium pro­posal is com­ing to the Cen­tral Li­brary, but don’t ex­pect it to get any qui­eter.

In a Fri­day news re­lease, the city an­nounced it will hold an in­for­ma­tion ses­sion Thurs­day to gather feed­back on com­mu­nity ben­e­fits that could be de­rived from a sta­dium at McKalla Place in North Austin.

The meet­ing, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the li­brary’s spe­cial event cen­ter on the first floor, is a re­sponse to a res­o­lu­tion passed by the Austin City Coun­cil on June 28.

The res­o­lu­tion di­rected the city man­ager to be­gin ne­go­ti­a­tions with Pre­court Sports Ven­tures, the own­er­ship group that hopes to move Colum­bus Crew SC to the Texas cap­i­tal next spring. It also called for fur­ther com­mu­nity en­gage­ment.

City staffers and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from PSV will be on hand to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion and an­swer ques­tions, sim­i­lar to com­mu­nity en­gage­ment meet­ings held in early May.

PSV sub­mit­ted an ini­tial sta­dium pro­posal to the city June 1, the same day the city’s eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment de­part­ment re­leased a de­tailed report re­gard­ing the use of the McKalla Place site for a sta­dium.

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.

The full pro­posal can be viewed at austin­texas.gov/ mckalla.

JAY JANNER / AMER­I­CAN-STATES­MAN

Com­mu­nity ben­e­fits to be de­rived from a sta­dium at McKalla Place in North Austin will be dis­cussed at a meet­ing Thurs­day.

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