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Vote on Austin MLS stadium delayed

A vote that could see a stadium built in Austin for Major League Soccer team Columbus Crew has been postponed until next week by the local council in the Texan city.

The owners of Columbus Crew, Precourt Sports Ventures, are considering moving the team some 1,200 miles to Austin and the city council had been due to vote on the matter yesterday (Thursday).

Crew owner Anthony Precourt has set his sights on building a $200m, 20,000-seat stadium in Austin as he feels the club is currently unsustainable in Columbus.

Austin Mayor Steve Adler has supported Precourt’s plans but the Associated Press news agency notes that some city councilors feel funds would be better spent on housing or parks.

Adler said, according to the AP: “We don’t have very many events in this city that bring everybody together, that bring people of every walk of like together. That’s a huge thing, a huge value for a city in desperate need of something like this. Not everything has to solve all of our problems.”

The vote is now expected to take place on August 15 to allow councillors to review the plans in more depth. The AP reported that several council members have taken issue with Precourt’s plans to spend $36m on a development academy for boys in Austin, with no similar commitment having been made for girls.

Columbus-based Crew fans are fighting to keep the team, which was formed in 1996, in Ohio, with a ‘Save The Crew’ campaign having been formed. The team has played at Mapfre Stadium (pictured) since 1999.

Image: Nheyob