In today’s economic climate, particularly for the USA, any incident which could derail a construction project is extra worrying.
Now due to a dispute between race promoters and the site developers the inaugural Texas Grand Prix 2012 has been cancelled, resulting in 300 construction workers losing their jobs.
The issue boils down to the Circuit of Americas claiming that no contract has been signed for the race to go ahead and Bernie Ecclestone, CEO of Formula One Management and Formula One Administration stating that he will not pay out money for the event.
Despite the fact that local businesses around Austin Texas are heavily relying on the wealth this event can generate for their community, hundreds of construction workers are also taking the brunt of the dispute and this could directly affect fans of the race, Susan Combs from the Texas Public Accounts organisation has categorically stated “The only dollars that can be spent on the United States Grand Prix are tax revenues attributable to the successful running of a race. The state of Texas will not be paying any funds in advance of the event”.
According to reports an understanding had developed between the Formula One Management CEO, Ecclestone and the race promoters Full Throttle Productions that any rights between the two would be passed onto the new Circuit of Americas facility.
If the construction work goes ahead the new circuit could be the first purpose built Grand Prix facility within the USA. The facility itself will be constructed around a 3.4 mile track and will have the capacity to hold up to 120,000 fans.
Situated on a massive 1,000 acre site in Austin, Texas, two miles from Austin Bergstrom Airport, the aim of the project was to develop a world class facility which can be used for a range of racing events. A 40,000 square feet conference centre, 3,600 square feet Executive Meeting Suites and a 5,500 square feet medical care and trauma centre will also be included, if the finished project comes to fruition.
Public spaces and private function areas are said to be included in the design plans, along with attractions for visitors such as a retail centre, museum and entertainment space for live music events. There will also be a research centre built which will support other education, technology and business centres. Additional elements of the new site include fire and rescue training centres, driving academies, educational programs and an area of law enforcement vehicle training.
The most worrying element of the suspended construction work is the direct affect this is having on construction workers whom have no connection to the spat between the two organisations, formed over money which is of little to no responsibility of the 300 workers who had to step down from their roles following the announcement of the suspension.
It is believed that the construction of the site will only continue once the contract between the two disputing parties is in the hands of the Circuit of the Americas bosses.