Austin: City Issues RFI for Walnut Creek Sports Complex Project
Feature Photo: An aerial view of the 60-acre piece of parkland that the city is seeking to develop, with a partner, into a sports league complex. Image: City of Austin.
by Art Benavidez
Austin (Travis County) — The City of Austin recently issued a request for information (RFI) seeking ideas, along with the possibility of an effective public‐private agreement, to develop a 60-acre piece of parkland along Walnut Creek.
One of three alternate configurations presented to City Council as concepts for the Walnut Creek sports complex.
The project would be known as the Walnut Creek Sports Complex and would be located at 7800 Johnny Morris Road in northeast Austin near Austin Tennis Center, Colony Park District Park, Austin to Manor Bicycle Trail and Walter E Long Metropolitan Park.
Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) is looking for an endeavor with an effective public‐private agreement that could generate revenue and enhance the experience of park users, businesses, visitors and residents surrounding the parkland.
In relation to the RFI, the city seeks potential topics to consider for the scope of work, as well as anything that may hinder a successful contracting process.
City Council will consider a for‐profit or non‐profit partner interested in entering a long‐term parkland improvement, programming and maintenance agreement to design, construct, program, operate and maintain a sports complex that is geared towards league play.
Development of the Walnut Creek Sports Complex may include input from City Council, boards and commissions, PARD, or community input.
The city is currently in the information‐gathering phase of this project, so a specific timeline has not yet been developed.
Phases for the Walnut Creek Sports Complex project tentatively include:
Phase I — Issue RFI (current Phase).
Phase II — City reviews information and concepts and develops a draft scope of work for a request for proposal that is competitive and inclusive of community goals for the property.
Phase III — City seeks feedback on scope of work.
Phase IV — City develops and issues a request for proposals based on developed scope of work from Phase II and III.
Phase V — Award contract for the development and management for the Walnut Sports Complex.
RFI responses are due by March 11 at 2 p.m. CST at the city’s central purchasing office, suite 308, located at 124 W. 8th Street.
Art Benavidez (Construction News Reporter, Central Texas) is a seasoned journalist with over 15-years of experience in writing breaking news and in-depth features at the local level. He honed his research and reporting skills in newspapers and magazines throughout South and West Texas along with expertise in crafting digital content as Managing Editor of New Image Marketing Research Corporation. Benevidez is a Texas native and graduate of UT-RGV.