Austin F1 site revealed? UPDATE #2 There was a news piece on KVUE television last night about the F1 track. The current rumor for the track is that it will be near Manor, which is farther north than the previous rumor. An announcement is expected early next week.
07/11/10 UPDATE This article in the Austin Chronicle, Austin's "alternative" weekly newspaper, is a good read on the proposed Austin, Texas F1 race.
The sign outside Wild Bubba's Wild Game Grill on Elroy Road promotes one of the restaurant's specialties: fried coyote tail.
|Possible site of Austin F1 track|
It also says, "Elroy welcomes Formula 1?"
In this corner of Travis County, about a mile east of Texas 130 and southeast of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, the buzz is about whether the track for the high-profile race will end up in their neck of the woods.
Organizers of the race, which was announced last month, have yet to disclose the site for the track, the investors and most other details, although they have lined up a commitment for $25 million in state money to help pay for the first year.
But people who live or do business in the Elroy Road-McAngus Road area say they've seen some unusual real estate activity in recent months - some of it near Wandering Creek, 647 acres that was planned as a residential subdivision but where nothing has been built. An application has been submitted to the city for water service.
Wyman "Wild Bubba" Gilliam, owner of the restaurant, says the eatery known for its wild-game burgers has been a hub of activity in the past couple of months. "There's been some (real estate) deals going down," he said. "I've seen about six deals being signed, best I can tell without being too nosy," he said.
The neighbors had raised objections two years ago when developer George "Kip" Kronenberg Jr. sought city and county approvals for Wandering Creek, planning nearly 1,800 homes. The neighbors cited concerns ranging from too many houses crammed on small lots to flooding and overtaxing roads and schools with the influx of new residents. Austin and Travis County gave preliminary approvals.
Olive said more than 500 people signed a petition to halt the project, and signs remain up in the area saying, "Stop Wandering Creek," although the approvals were granted.
"I would take Formula One over 40-foot lots with boomboxes and pit bulls any day," Olive said. "I would rather have horrible congested traffic for one weekend a year than live with it the rest of my life."
Kronenberg told the Statesman the land is not the F1 site and said the water line was for the subdivision. He did not return subsequent phone calls.
But his son, George "Kam" Kronenberg III, who also is involved in Wandering Creek, has a clear tie to the Formula One deal. In April 2009, Kam Kronenberg sent a handwritten note to Comptroller Susan Combs, who has been deeply involved in the Formula One discussions, that said in part: "Dear Susan: Thank you for your time and effort. I hope that we can find a way to make F1 a reality in Texas!"
Attempts to reach Kam Kronenberg at his office and home have been unsuccessful, and he has not returned numerous phone calls. More at The Statesman