Construction continues on the first phase of the Cumberland Co. Motorsports Park.
CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Tennessee (WVLT) — The first phase of a motorsports park being built in Cumberland County is expected to be completed early next year.
Rusty Bittle, developer and founding partner of Flatrock USA, confirmed that the company opened its new motorsports park earlier this year. They continue to build and work towards the completion of the projected phases.
“We’re under construction, scraping and blasting a lot of rocks,” Bittle said. “We expect the club track to be completed by the end of the year, and if not, the first quarter of next year.”
According to Bittle, the construction delays can be attributed to rain and weather conditions.
“The rain has been a drag on us, but we’re struggling through it,” Bittle told WVLT News.
Further construction of the 800 acres of property will come after the completion of the first phase, with crews expected to begin work next year.
Initially, it was thought that the motorsports park would go to Oak Ridge; however, Bittle announced in early 2021 that he had walked away from the $4.8 million deal with the Industrial Development Board.
“We received new information from the DOE late last week that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) must be completed at Horizon Center. Further testing could cost upwards of $7 million and take upwards of 3-4 years, with no guarantee that final approval would be received. Ultimately, this new information led me to identify another host community in East Tennessee,” Bittle told WVLT News in April of last year.
Bittle said while Oak Ridge didn’t happen, he thinks Cumberland County is the perfect place. Because the land is larger than the site originally envisioned at Oak Ridge, the concept evolved from a motorsports park to a larger entertainment and recreation destination.
“We tried very hard to get this at Oak Ridge, and it just didn’t work out,” he said. “We think we are in a very good location. We are approximately thirty minutes west of Knoxville and one and a half hours east of Nashville.
The property, which is off I-40 at the Westel exit, was owned by the Plateau Park Partnership before it was purchased in 2021, a spokesperson said. The area is said to have lain dormant for years after Roane, Morgan and Cumberland counties bought the property together and marketed the site for development.
When complete, there will be an amphitheater, winery, signature hotel and conference center, destination restaurant with brewery, innovation center and museum, shopping mall, clubhouse with amenities , deluxe and standard garages, a campground, adventure activities, several types of residential properties, farming to provide most of the meats and produce needed for on-site restaurants, a helipad and an observatory at the highest point of the property, according to Flatrock.
“I wake up quite often in the middle of the night and have fresh new ideas and revitalize myself,” Bittle said. “I don’t think there will be anything in the world like Flatrock, so we’re very excited. The community is very excited.
A previous market study by an independent firm concluded that the project would generate $93 million in its first five years and up to $110 million in a best-case scenario.
Those interested in becoming a Flatrock Motorclub member can apply here.
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