Fredericksburg and Gillespie County will likely see a “full steam ahead” economy in the next few years.
In last week’s Standard-Radio Post, we profiled the expansion of the Boot Ranch community, the high-end development which has witnessed steady growth over the past few years, and will enter phase two of its master plan. This will open up 350 potential new home sites for those who appreciate the types of amenities offered at this type of development.
Frieden development will see growth soon as this project begins between South Washington Street and U.S. 290 East. More than 219 acres will be used for modern farmhouse-style homes with some commercial attractions, as well.
Other residential development is taking place at Stone Ridge, the Oaks at Windcrest, Crabapple Grove and the Rolling Hills Townhouses.
And, as discussed at Monday night’s city council meeting, The Seven Hills Resort and Conference Center will begin work to transform the western side of Main Street. Located at the U.S. 290 West and 87 North “Y” intersection, this development will give Fredericksburg the opportunity to attract larger conferences than current facilities allow. Currently planned to be under the Hilton Hotels flag, this center and resort promises to attract many newcomers, some of whom will no doubt choose to visit again or invest in property here.
The city is using a first-ever economic development agreement with the center, which will see the center use its hotel occupancy tax proceeds to help fund the conference center, as well as marketing efforts which will draw a new clientele and conference crowds to town.
(This agreement has been reviewed and approved by legal staff at the Texas Hotel and Lodging Association in Austin.)
City Manager Kent Myers, speaking at a civic group meeting on Monday, also reviewed big projects ahead for 2018.
Proposed annexations, most of which are at major town entrances;
Continued talks with developers interested in building “attainable” housing, which will be a huge positive for our younger families and service workers;
Continued work on the U.S. 290 Relief Route;
Expanded offerings for local residents with new special events;
A possible expansion of the historic district;
Working with the Hill Country University Center (HCUC) on its master plan.
As noted by the Fredericksburg Convention and Visitor Bureau recently, having The Seven Hills development on the west side and a growing and successful HCUC on the east will provide Main Street bookends that will play major parts in the town’s success.
Myers also mentioned the challenges our town will face as we grow. Of course, change takes place and sometimes it can be uncomfortable.
Maintaining quality of life, providing affordable housing, working on traffic and roadways, and continuing to look for a solution for the shortage of sports fields are all on the city’s watch list.
This area again proves itself to be an exceptional small town. These additions to town and the new residents they will bring are positives other markets can only wish for. We are excited about the future of Fredericksburg. – K.E.C.