Austin American Statesman
Cedar Park could soon be home to a water park resort, the latest attraction in the growing bedroom community that officials say will draw people from across Central Texas.
City leaders are expected to announce plans tonight for a new Schlitterbahn Waterpark, a brand well known to Texans for its original New Braunfels location.
The park would be built on about 95 acres on RM 1431, about halfway between U.S. 183 and Interstate 35, according to a Cedar Park Economic Development Corp. meeting agenda. The project is expected to cost about $360 million to fully develop, city documents said.
The economic impact of the project is expected to be $2.5 billion over 30 years and could create more than 1,000 jobs , according to an independent study cited in city documents.
"It is a resort destination that we're announcing \u2026 not just a water park," Schlitterbahn spokesman Jeffrey Siebert said.
The park would be the company's fifth and its second largest in acreage. Other parks are on South Padre Island and Galveston Island and in Kansas City, Kan.
Siebert said the new water park might include a hotel or other features, but he did not provide details Wednesday.
The City Council will vote tonight on whether to spend up to $6 million in city sales tax revenue for infrastructure, which could include utilities and roads surrounding the project, according to the council's regular agenda.
Council members will also vote on an economic development agreement between the city and AWPH Management LLC, whose registered agent is listed by the Texas secretary of state's office as Schlitterbahn owner Gary Henry . City officials wouldn't elaborate on the agreement Wednesday and declined to comment on the project until the meeting. That meeting is at 5:30 p.m. today at the Cedar Park Public Library, 550 Discovery Blvd .
The project would be complete by 2012 , according to Rick Redmond , who owns Volente Beach Waterpark on Lake Travis and is one of the partners in the project. He said in a news release that he, along with his wife, Jill, and other partners, have been trying to build a water park in Cedar Park for at least four years.
"The Henrys, owners of Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts, and the Redmonds, friends for many years, decided that the Schlitterbahn concept was a perfect fit for this site," Rick Redmond said in the release. "The City of Cedar Park agreed and here we are."
He said his park will remain open this year and in 2011. But he did not say if it would remain open once Schlitterbahn debuts.
The water park would be the latest effort by city officials to transform Cedar Park, a city of 55,000 just northwest of Austin, into what members of the council regularly refer to as a "destination city."
Last year, the city completed work on the $55 million , 181,640-square-foot Cedar Park Center, at New Hope Drive and the 183-A tollway. The center is home to the American Hockey League's Texas Stars and also hosts other events such as concerts. It is the third-largest indoor mixed-use venue in Central Texas.
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