Do you remember when people talked about Bee Creek, and nobody knew where that was?
“You mean, Bee Cave?”
“Nope, Bee Creek. It’s near The Reserve. You know, past Serene Hills.”
“What’s Serene Hills?”
Well, that booming sliver of Lake Travis could get even crazier, because the new — and rather enormous — Bee Creek Sports Complex at 4440 Bee Creek Road is up for approval to proceed. It’s about .7 miles away from Lake Travis Middle School as the crow flies.
A brief “boomburg” history
Discussions about a new sports complex have been brewing for many years. The conversation probably started “back in the day” with Field of Dreams and how the massive influx of young families moving to the Lake Travis area was rendering those facilities obsolete.
Lake Travis Youth Association began busting at the seams with skyrocketing registration numbers for their youth sports teams. Today, LTYA serves about 6,000 area students, up from about 4,000 players five years ago. Plus, 90% of those students attend Lake Travis ISD schools.
With projected growth in mind, Lakeway purchased the 70 acres located at 4440 Bee Creek Road back in 2014 with a $3.7 million-voter-approved-bond. In 2017, Travis County voters approved funding for the project, described as “one of the largest projects in the 2017 Travis County bond program.” It totaled a whopping $23.5 million.
What’s in the colossal complex
The City of Lakeway is working in partnership with Travis Country Parks on this vast complex that will potentially include the following (based on October 23, 2018, Conceptual Site Plan):
- Seven synthetic, fields – two for soccer, three multi-use for baseball/softball, two multi-use for soccer/football
- Meeting facility for teams
- Storage area and batting cages
- Playground and group pavilion
- Warm-up areas for teams
- Trails throughout the property
- Improved and primitive trails
- Maintenance building
- Associated infrastructure
Fun facts about the project
According to Travis Country Parks website, the soccer, baseball, softball, and football fields will be synthetic turf and sized to serve youth teams for children 14 and under. The team meeting facility will have an area for food trucks.
Lighting design will follow “dark-sky” standards, which means it will be designed to reduce light pollution by requiring outdoor lighting to be shielded to reduce glare or by limiting the use of outdoor lights that burn at a higher (cooler) wavelength. All of these steps help ensure neighbors get plenty of shut-eye that won’t be disturbing the sky or their natural melatonin levels.
Since we’re all about preserving what’s left like streams and trees, Travis County Parks will be conducting surveys to assess Bee Creek watershed’s current condition, as well as look for areas that are experiencing erosion or other issues that could impact the floodplain along these streams.
Locals voice a few concerns
In a meeting at Lakeway Activity Center last week, the public was invited to see a sneak peek of the initial concept plan. There were a handful of concerns voiced about things like lighting, security, and traffic. Mainly, lighting after dark.
Similar complaints were made back when the Lexus dealership was built near Bella Montagna —neighbors don’t want to see lights all night. LTers like their nighttime dark, so they can star gaze. Anyway, Travis County Parks said lights will always be off by 10:30pm. LTYA also said later-hour lighting shouldn’t be problematic since most games finish by 9pm-9:30pm.
Of course, parking and traffic woes seem likely if you look at the access streets to the complex. Another roundabout on Bee Creek Road? That sounds fun.
The final design for the facility is slated for the spring of 2019.
A revised concept plan that addresses public interests will be prepared and presented to the Commissioner’s Court so they can approve or not move forward with the project.
You may submit written comments via email to [email protected] until November 2, 2018.
We’re curious what you think about the Bee Creek Sports Complex. Let us know in the comments section on our Facebook page.
Image: Google Maps & Travis Country Parks website