Thursday, December 18, 2014

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COTA president talks year-round track impact with area developers

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On Thursday, real estate leaders learned the year-round impact they can expect from Circuit of The Americas—slated to open in less than two months.

Steve Sexton, president of the Circuit of the Americas, met with the Real Estate Council of Austin to discuss benefits which can come from the track—and not just during the U.S. Grand Prix in November.

"We will have tens of thousands of people,” Sexton said. “Sixty to 70 percent of our customer base will be outside of Texas. These are people who are coming to Austin."

And Sexton believes the key to bringing them back—perhaps permanently—is by showcasing Austin in the best way possible.

"Conducting that event this fall is really important from a service perspective so that those customers will come back next November," he said.

Nancy McDonald with the RECA said members have backed everything from downtown high-rise projects to shopping malls, and the fact that they asked Sexton to speak at Thursday meeting shows that their focus is now on COTA and the lucrative opportunities surrounding the track.

"Anything that drives development,” she said. “And I think this project most certainly will."

McDonald admits plans for major development in Southeast Travis County are still blurry, but she says the group is watching closely, gauging when the time is right to act.

Sexton said the goal is to make the racetrack a year-round attraction, not just a once-a-year destination for F1 fans.

They have already booked several concerts and are working on booking a handful of other events. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP