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Tuesday, June 5, 2018 by Chad Swiatecki

In what was probably an inevitable step in the time of digital activism between those on both sides of Austin’s soccer stadium debate, a new petition invokes the city’s need for affordable housing as an “offside” of sorts (soccer pun!) against the stadium proposed for McKalla Place. The petition asks supporters to push for the 24-acre North Austin parcel to be used for “housing for low income families,” generally defined as being affordable for residents and households earning 60 percent or less of the area’s median family income. It also takes city leaders to task for exploring and starting to negotiate with owners of the Columbus Crew SC professional soccer team for a possible 20,000-seat stadium on the site, arguing that in recent years city staff had identified McKalla Place as a preferred location for a development that would include affordable housing. The petition was near its goal of 200 signatures as of this writing. City Council and soccer team owners Precourt Sports Ventures will spend much of June negotiating a possible agreement, with the team pushing for the deal to be complete or close to it before Council’s July recess.

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