Austin could be getting Major League Soccer – that is, if the Ohio-based team the Columbus Crew decides to move to the Texas capital. The team’s owners are still mulling over the idea and Austin leaders are hoping to convince them by offering up possible locations for a stadium.
While some soccer fans say none of the proposed sites are ideal, the company that owns the Columbus Crew seems to already have its eyes set on one spot.
Chris Bils, a sports writer for the Austin American-Statesman, says city leaders proposed eight possible locations. Among the options are the old Home Depot site at I-35 and St. Johns Avenue, a property on McCullough Avenue near the Domain, and the Toomey Ballfields at Butler Shores.
He says the only site that checks all the boxes is Toomey Ballfields. The owners of the Columbus Crew want the stadium right in the middle of Austin, though that will be a challenge for the crowded city.
“The renderings actually included no on-site parking,” Bils says. “So that is the first thing people pointed to.” But the team owners counter that other cities have made it work with limited parking options, like Portland and Orlando.
Bils says the city is facing a daunting timeline to approve a plan – the team would like to move by 2019.
Written by Jen Rice.