City to ask Wescott to postpone public hearing for USA International Raceway

Leader Reporter/March 5, 2006
By Tim Ryan

Shawano city officials plan to ask the Town of Wescott to postpone a public hearing on a request from Midwest Amusement Park for expanded operations at Midwest’s USA International Raceway.

Midwest is requesting a change in its conditional use permit to expand hours of operations to 11 p.m. from its current 9 p.m. closing, and allow all sizes and all brands of sport bikes on the racetrack. The request also asks that the track be allowed to operate seven days a week.

The Wescott Plan Commission is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the permit change at its meeting Tuesday at 9 a.m.

“We will request that they postpone the hearing so that we can notify city residents,” said city administrator Jim Stadler.

Mayor Lorna Marquardt said at last Wednesday’s city Plan Commission meeting that the Town of Wescott notified town residents about the hearing as required, but that the town was not required to notify city residents.

The racetrack, which is adjacent to the city, made an unsuccessful attempt to be annexed into the city last year. City officials turned down the annexation request.

Marquardt said the expanded operation and additional types of motorcycles raised concerns about noise from the racetrack, particularly with the Community Baptist Church moving to that area and a nearby residential development being built.

We’d like city residents to have an opportunity to speak on this,” Marquardt said.

The racetrack was originally operating under a conditional use permit granted in 1991 when the property was owned by Terry Kralovetz and known as Water and Wheels.

The property is now owned by Midwest Amusement Park, LLC, one of several companies affiliated with the Samanta Roy Institute of Science and Technology.

Midwest expanded the go-kart track into a racetrack facility that went into operation in 2004.

The conditional use granted in 1991 allowed for the operation of a go-kart track but included restrictions that prohibited an auto racetrack.

Last year, the county Planning, Development and Zoning Committee set aside last a recommendation by the Wescott Plan Commission to limit the racetrack to go-karts and motorcycles.

The racetrack, at W5901 County Road BE, has hosted national events such as the North America Can-Am Championship and American Motorcycle Association race.

The county decision also paved the way for future racetrack plans, including a three-story building that would include an indoor go-kart track and retail shops, though the racetrack will have to present site plans before a building permit is issued.

However, the committee raised concerns about noise and approved hours of operation from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. as part of the conditional use permit.

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