AUSTIN (KXAN) - Austin's first Formula 1 race is just under a month away. Flash forward a few years from now, and the area around the Circuit of The Americas site should look very different.
Big development will likely be in the works, and now we are seeing the first property listings going maybe for millions.
John Blunt of Blunt Commercial Properties said he has perhaps the best view of the track from outside the gates – and it is up for grabs.
"Go back two years," Blunt said. "There was nothing here. It was rural. All of a sudden, we hear Formula 1 is coming, so you have a game changer overnight."
Blunt handles two tracts of land – 16 acres - on the east side of the racing site along Elroy Road, something he is marketing as a possible resort for fans. The area is a "natural amphitheater" all to way down to the track – with an $8.5 million price tag.
"I envision a beautiful, huge hotel," he said.
Blunt admits that amount is a big goal, but it could also be a major improvement on what the Travis County Appraisal District says the land was worth this year - a little more than $100,000. That leaves plenty of incentive to sell, as that value has only gone down over the last five years by just under $20,000.
But if you look at the bigger picture, property around the entire race site went up around 30 percent between 2010 and 2011. Then this year, it went up nearly another six percent.
With increasing numbers like that, some property owners like Mike McLaughlin, who also lives on Elroy Road, want to let a few years go by before selling to maybe make a little more money.
"I'm one that would probably pull the plug faster and sell, but my wife is the smart one, and she wants to wait," said McLaughlin.
But Blunt said now is the time. He is already talking to a few potential buyers but has no offers so far.
"It's the only game in town," he said of his real estate location. "It's the only player, because that's the immediate need -- servicing the racetrack."
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