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F1, county take on repaving costs for Las Vegas Grand Prix

Updated May 31, 2023 - 3:52 pm

Clark County and Formula One are set to enter into a public-private partnership as the two sides negotiate infrastructure improvements tied to the Nov. 18 Las Vegas Grand Prix.

The partnership will be discussed at next week’s Clark County Commission meeting and would be linked to the costs of readying the 3.8-mile track for this fall’s inaugural race weekend.

County documents do not note the potential cost of the paving work. It was previously noted in March by Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority President and CEO Steve Hill that F1 was seeking $37 million for the infrastructure work.

Clark County spokeswoman Jennifer Cooper said in an email Wednesday that “there are no dollars associated with the Board’s upcoming action.”

If the item is approved, according to Cooper, it would allow for those discussions surrounding the use of public money to occur.

“A dollar amount has yet to be determined,” she wrote.

Crews began the monthslong track-repaving project in April on the public roads that will make up the majority of the race’s track. Those roads include Las Vegas Boulevard, Koval Lane, and Harmon and Sands avenues.

Las Vegas Boulevard southbound is closed between Caesars Palace and Harmon through 9 a.m. Friday as crews carry out the repaving operations on that stretch. The repaving operations will be on portions of Sands, Harmon, Koval, and private roads around F1’s paddock site and the MSG Sphere through late August.

A final round of track paving then will occur between July 16 and Sept. 15.

The infrastructure work also will include readying the track ahead of the race with temporary barriers, pedestrian access points and other needed elements for operations and safety.

Race officials have projected that the grand prix weekend, set for Nov. 16-18, would lead to an economic impact of over $1 billion. The road work already underway also is seen as a benefit to the county, as future repaving of the Strip included in the race’s circuit already was planned.

Race officials noted that the 105,000 Las Vegas Grand Prix tickets, mainly three-day passes, are nearly sold out.

As such, county staff is recommending the approval of the public-private partnership resolution, noting that Las Vegas Grand Prix’s proposal to partner for the initial infrastructure of the circuit serves a public purpose, according to county documents.

If the partnership with F1 is approved Tuesday, Clark County Manager Kevin Schiller would negotiate the public contribution of the road work with race officials, to be heard at a future commission meeting.

This potential partnership with a major sports entity comes as the county is considering entering into a public-private partnership with the Oakland Athletics, pledging $145 million for the construction of their planned $1.5 billion Las Vegas ballpark.

The 30,000-seat, partially retractable roof stadium is set to be constructed on the site of the Tropicana Las Vegas.

The bill that would include the public contribution of up to $380 million from the county and state was introduced last week at the Legislature and heard Monday during a joint meeting of the Senate Committee on Finance and the Assembly Committee on Ways and Means.

Of the county’s proposed contribution, $120 million would be repaid via a tax district set up around the 9-acre stadium site, with taxes that would be generated by the stadium being used to repay bonds that would be taken out to finance the stadium.

The other $25 million would be provided by the county for infrastructure improvements around the site.

Contact Mick Akers at makers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2920. Follow @mickakers on Twitter.

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