Commissioners approve warehouse complex at Palm Beach International Raceway, then endorse search for new racetrack site.
With their attorneys waving the white flag, county commissioners Thursday reversed a January decision and approved zoning to allow a massive warehouse complex at the shuttered Palm Beach International Raceway.
But they rolled out a potential final lap for racing fans who have been fighting the warehouses for more than a year: At least three commissioners said they would seek a way to build a new raceway in Palm Beach County.
County defends decision to deny warehouses at shuttered Palm Beach International Raceway, says owner failed to show that circumstances have changed.
It took five minutes for retired Administrative Law Judge Bram Canter to announce that mediation had failed between Palm Beach County and the landowner seeking to build warehouses at the former Moroso racetrack.
Palm Beach International Raceway owners seek County Commission’s blessing on Jan. 11 for updated 2.1 million-square-foot warehouse plan.
The conversion of a beloved local raceway to warehouses is back on track after the property owners eliminated a major hurdle that forced them to make an unscheduled pit stop in April.
The owners of the shuttered Palm Beach International Raceway west of Jupiter are moving forward on their own, without construction giant Portman Industrial, which pitched a 2.1 million-square-foot warehouse development before angry racing fans packed a meeting April 7 to block it.
Formula Race Promotions, with Indy champ Danny Sullivan, says it will reveal location of massive complex in early June.
A racing group that includes one time Indy 500 champion Danny Sullivan says it will unveil plans in June for a massive racetrack complex on 900 acres in Martin County to replace the now-shuttered Palm Beach International Raceway.
The group, Formula Race Promotions headed by Al Guibord, tried but failed to buy the 175-acre PBIR, which is under contract to warehouse-builder Portman Industrial.
Race fans persuade Zoning Commission loss of racing at PBIR outweighs benefits of warehousing.
Racing fans won the first lap Thursday in a much longer race when the Palm Beach County Zoning Commission voted 9-0 to reject plans for a warehouse complex that would replace their beloved Palm Beach International Raceway.
They drive for hours to race at Palm Beach County’s lone racetrack: Amateurs with muscle cars, hobbyists with pricey foreign models, seasoned drivers with off-road hot rods. Now a plan for warehouses threatens the place they love.
Marcus Falden left his digital marketing job south of Miami at 11:30 on a recent Friday morning to get to the Palm Beach International Raceway before it opened at 5 p.m.
He’s looking forward to 11 — maybe 12, but certainly not 13 — seconds of joy, as he guns his Infiniti Q50S to 119 mph for a quarter-mile straightaway.
As soon as it’s over, he’ll line up to do it again. If the night goes right, he’ll get in three runs before the busy track closes at 11 p.m.
He and his buddy, Miguel Cruz, also from the Kendall area, drove more than 100 miles March 25 to place their cars among the first ones lined up for the drag strip at PBIR, the former Moroso Motorsports Park on Beeline Highway west of Jupiter.
“It’s hard to explain,” Cruz said. “You’re sitting in your car, and the lights start flashing (to signal the start) and your heart starts going 100 mph. It happens so fast.”