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As list of potential sites for MLS stadium narrows, focus turns to McKalla Place near The Domain

One local business owner says a soccer stadium at McKalla Place can't get here quick enough.

As the list of potential sites for a Major League Soccer stadium in Austin gets narrower and narrower, the owners of Ohio's Columbus Crew Soccer Club are now focusing on a spot near The Domain.

McKalla Place, a piece of city-owned land near Burnet Road and West Braker Lane in North Austin, is a few minutes away from the shopping center.

It's also a favorable location because it's not city parkland, unlike Butler Shores Park and Roy G. Guerrero Park, which were once under consideration.

"Can't get here quick enough," C-Hunt's Ice House owner Greg Hunt told KVUE about the possibility of the soccer team's owner, Precourt Sports Ventures, choosing to build a stadium at McKalla Place.

Hunt's bar is just down the road from there. It's one of dozens of nearby businesses that could see a boost in foot traffic from crowds looking to watch professional soccer.

"The more people, the more people are going to drink beer, so every place around here is going to benefit," he said. "It's without a doubt ... it's less traffic than downtown."

But Pete Reid, an Austin sports lawyer and sports fan, told KVUE that MLS prefers its stadiums to be in the center of the city.

"Obviously, this particular location is not downtown. I don't think there is an ideal location in Austin, but I think that this may be the best location in Austin right now," he said. "It seems to be the path of least resistance. So for people who want soccer to happen, it's most likely to happen in a short-term by having some sort of arrangement at McKalla Place."

Regardless of the soccer team owner's final decision, Hunt said his bar will keep serving drinks, with or without that extra boost in business.

"If they come, they come," he said. "If they don't, someone else will come."

The Austin City Council is expected to meet sometime in April to vote on whether the city manager should conduct a deeper analysis to determine if McKalla Place is the best fit for the stadium.

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