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Motorsports test track, research … or entertainment?

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — Oak Ridge City Council voted Monday to express “interest” in having the Oak Ridge Industrial Development Board look into selling land at Oak Ridge’s Horizon Center for a possible motorsports complex and test track that could cost up to $50 milion.

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — Oak Ridge City Council voted Monday to express “interest” in having the Oak Ridge Industrial Development Board look into selling land at Oak Ridge’s Horizon Center for a possible motorsports complex and test track that could cost up to $50 milion.

The resolution included in City Council’s meeting agenda started out by saying Council was “expressing support” for the development; referred to the project as a “test track and research facility”; and later in the resolution stated Council “endorses” the project.

However, the final version approved by Council removed that language after concerns about environmental issues, noise, agreements with the U.S. Department of Energy and other issues came up during the meeting.

Mayor Warren Gooch made the motion to amend the resolution.

“I don’t know that Council is ready to ‘endorse’ this proposal,” the mayor said. However he said he was willing to send the proposal back to the Industrial Development Board (IDB) for “further due diligence.”

Mayor Pro Tem Rick Chinn seconded Gooch’s motion. During the meeting, Chinn had nothing but good things to say about the proposed development and said he was willing to support the resolution with or without changing its language.

“We’re supporting the IDB to move forward,” he said, regarding what he thought Council should do.

The IDB is in charge of selling property at the Horizon Center. The resolution contained no mention of tax abatements or other incentives in either version.

Council member Ellen Smith who expressed skepticism about the proposal summed up Council’s decision on the amended language.

“We want to support

Article source: https://www.oakridger.com/news/20200213/motorsports-test-track-research--or-entertainment

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