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April 2019

Baseball Scouting Group Moving to Hutto in City’s Largest Development Deal

By Austin American Statesman

Perfect Game, a baseball scouting organization, is moving its national headquarters to Hutto in what the city described as the single largest economic development deal in its history, according to a news release issued Thursday night.

Perfect Game will be building the city’s first indoor sports and events center and a convention hotel, the release said. It will also feature 24 baseball fields, including 10 that the city of Hutto will build for public use, according to the release. The sports and events center is designed to seat 13,000 people.

The complex in Hutto will also feature office, commercial and residential space, medical and physical therapy services, and sports and clothing apparel, the release said.

The national headquarters of Perfect Game is currently in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The project — a partnership between Perfect Game, developer Wolverine Interests, LLC, Sports Facility Advisory/Sports Facilities Management and the City of Hutto — will bring $800 million in private investment, the release said. It will be located east of Fritz Park, located at 400 Park Avenue and on the north side of U.S. 79.

Perfect Game has entered a 30-year lease with the city for the land, according to the release. The property tax totals are expected to be $5.1 million each year, and sales tax totals are estimated to be $1.5 million annually, the release said.

The city will reinvest 60% of the property taxes back into the project for 30 years through a tax increment reinvestment zone that will pay for public infrastructure like fields, roads, utilities and garages, the release said. It said Hutto will also generate additional revenue from gate entry fees as well as receive revenue from the hotel room occupancy tax, local sponsorships and a hotel rebate program.

Perfect Game plans to host a grand opening tournament no later than Memorial Day 2021, the release said. It said all fields are anticipated to be finished by that time. Wolverine Interests expects that the first residential project will also be completed by Memorial Day 2021, the release said.

“Perfect Game’s decision to locate in Hutto, just 25 minutes from Austin, is one of the most significant events in the sports tourism industry in the last 20 years,” said Dev Pathik, founder and CEO of Sports Facilities Advisory in a statement. “Combining an SFM events center and hotel was a natural fit and will turn Hutto into one of the top scouting destinations in America. The community programs offered by SFM and Perfect Game will improve access to sports for local citizens. It is a true win, win, win.”

Hutto City Manager Odis Jones said in the release that “Perfect Game is a game changer in terms of diversifying our tax base, in particular, our tourism, hotel and convention business. It will benefit Hutto and the Central Texas region by infusing $200 million annually in direct spending to our local community, creating demand for more than 150,000 hotel room nights, and bringing Hutto a 13,000-seat indoor sports arena.”

Perfect Game founder Jerry Ford said in the release that his organization looks “forward to helping Hutto achieve its economic and community goals.”

According to Perfect Game’s website, the business “promotes the game of baseball now and in the future by hosting the highest quality amateur events while providing meaningful opportunities and information to players, families, MLB organizations, college coaches, and fans.”

It is the largest baseball showcase organization in the country and has seen 11,623 players drafted by Major League Baseball, and 1,234 major league players get their start through Perfect Game tournaments, the website said.

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The Co-Op District, Rendering, The Co-Op District Landscape Designers, The Co-Op District, Silos, The Co-Op, Hutto, Hutto Texas, Shopping, Entertainment, Food

Hutto’s Co-Op District progresses with completion of new City Hall

By KXAN Austin

A 35-acre development in Hutto is beginning to take shape now that a new City Hall has officially opened there.

The city consolidated most of its departments into one building that is located in an area that will be called The Co-Op District off U.S. 79. The new City Hall, which is about 35,000 square feet in size, opened to the public Monday.

“Basically everything the public will need is all here on the first floor,” Mayor Doug Gaul said during a tour Tuesday. “They’ve got their library, pay their bills, pay their fines, interact with people. Then, we’ve got the offices upstairs.”

On the ground floor, the city library occupies more than 4,500 square feet. Staff members worked through the weekend to get all the books onto shelves, computers online and meeting rooms ready for people to use.

“We had over 241 people coming in [Monday] getting new library cards, checking out books,” library manager Lisa Riggs said. “We’ve had patrons that haven’t come in since 2009 come and get library cards.”

Pamela Carter came Tuesday to check out the new space and take home a few books.

“It was much more spacious and not so crowded,” Carter said about the new library. “It seemed like the staff were happy to be in a new place.”

The balcony on the second floor of City Hall overlooks the large construction site where crews are working on the rest of The Co-Op District development. The developer already announced that Top Notch Hamburgers, Southside Market & Barbeque and Flix Brewhouse will be the first three tenants in the walkable, mixed-use develpoment. More announcements should be made soon, city leaders told KXAN.

“Hutto’s only really had one street for their downtown, so this really kind of expands our downtown,” Gaul said. “It becomes a more downtown environment. I look forward to a family coming down here on a Saturday night and spending probably three or four hours down here.”

The city expects The Co-Op District development to take at least another five years to complete. Carter expects it to draw in visitors to the community she loves.

“Things are nearby where you don’t have to drive into austin to go out to eat,” she said. “It’s nice to see the community growing and [have] more things to do with family.”

The Hutto Police Department is not housed in the new City Hall. Police are instead renovating their current space at 401 Front Street.

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