Last weekend, the Formula One racing world turned its attention to the U.S. Grand Prix in Austin, Texas, and to the accomplishments of Austin Industries, one of the largest employee-owned construction companies in the United States.
Prior to the first U.S. Grand Prix, Austin Industries completed their two-year, $250 million project, Circuit of the Americas racetrack. The track was awarded a Grade 1 status, the highest distinction awarded to a motor sports venue by Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the governing body for world motor sports and the federation of the world’s leading motoring organizations.
In 2010, Austin Industries began construction on the Circuit of the Americas complex. The track was designed by German engineering firm Tilke, with assistance from Dr. Rainer Hart, the world expert on Formula One race track construction. Building the complex took incredible dedication from the employee-owners of Austin Industries, with 1,000 daily workers on-site for 13 months. The race track is a state-of-the-art facility with a 10,000-seat grandstand, pit row and garages, media building, amphitheater with observation tower, conference center, medical buildings, pedestrian bridges, and parking lots.
This new facility will undoubtedly have a positive economic impact for the community and the state of Texas. However, the facility’s greatest accomplishment was the track itself. Formula One race tracks must be able to withstand cars travelling more than 200 miles per hour, and tires reaching temperatures close to 230 degrees. In order to construct the track, the surface of the track had to be one continuous, smooth, seamless layer of asphalt. Furthermore, unlike the average highway which is about 16 to 22 inches thick, Formula One tracks are ten feet deep and contain layers of sand, sandy clay loam, gravel, crushed limestone and asphalt, and a polymer material that acts as a moisture barrier.
With more than 5,000 employees, 100% employee-owned Austin Industries, based in Dallas, Texas, is one of the largest, most diversified builders in the United States. They provide nearly every type of civil, commercial and industrial construction services, and are nationally renowned for their exceptional safety records, diversity inclusion program, and innovative construction solutions. The hard work and dedication of the employee-owners at Austin Industries cannot be ignored. As employee-owners, they realize that the company’s success is literally their success, pushing them to perform at the highest level. Austin looks forward to the next exciting project that will challenge employee-owners to work together and create a best-in-class product.