San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

September 30th, 2009
Council passes second reading for Purgatory project

Associate Editor

The San Marcos City Council approved a second reading for a last-minute extension on a zoning change request for the developers of the proposed Purgatory Creek Apartment complex.

Without Tuesday’s vote, the project would have died Wednesday.

At an 8 a.m. special meeting, the council voted 4-2 in favor of extending the deadline for developer Larry Peel & Company and ETR Consulting to secure approval from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) for the location of a curb cut onto Hunter Road and the construction plans for a center turn lane and a deceleration lane on Hunter Road by Sept. 30.

With the council’s Tuesday vote, the developer has been granted an extension until June 30 to secure approval from TxDOT.

As the council approved the extension, San Marcos Mayor Susan Narvaiz mentioned that the city will eventually acquire and maintain Hunter Road from Wonder World Drive to its intersection with Ranch Road 12, thus removing the intersection from TxDOT’s authority. A city official said TxDOT is, in essence, allowing the city to give the go-ahead in securing approval for the road improvements, given that Hunter Road will soon be turned over to San Marcos.

Per the original agreement for rezoning from general commercial (GC) to multi-family (MF-18) approved on March 4, the developer’s request would be revoked if the TxDOT approvals weren’t secured by Wednesday. The developers were unable to obtain that approval before the deadline.

Councilmembers John Thomaides and Chris Jones dissented, while Councilmember Gaylord Bose was absent due to a pre-scheduled family event.

The Purgatory Creek Apartment project is proposed to be built near Hunter Road and Wonder World Drive on approximately 22.5 acres.

In  February, the council voted 4-2 against the developer’s request for the zoning change. The council later reversed course in March and voted in favor of allowing the change with the stipulations.

When the developers told city officials they would not be able to meet the Sept. 30 deadline for TxDOT approval, the council took up the extension as an emergency measure on Sept. 15. Though the council didn’t cast the five votes needed to approve the emergency item, a 4-3 vote in its favor sufficed as a first reading passage.

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0 thoughts on “Council passes second reading for Purgatory project

  1. One must admit that if it is true, TxDOT intends soon to transfer responsibility to the City for the area in question. That would make a moot point of the State’s curb-cuts permitting being considered and delayed, which is apparently the cause of the shuffle, reversal and extension of time giver the developers thus far. They might get their funding in place contingent on having the permits; get them either from CoSM or TxDOT; and be ready to roll, without delays, interest and fees, costs, or personal expenditure for the road work. The investor would avoid unneccessary exposure until their deal was ripe for closure; and in this scenario, the City would inherit full responsibility for the related road sector, including any utility expansion or moving to be done in future, as well as any future signalization, widening, drainage improvements, etc.

    Your Capital Improvements Plan at work (as a variance, or favor?). What of that “minor increase in possible traffic at Hunter, Wonderworld, Stagecoach, and Hopkins/San Antonio? We can work that out later, on our nickel?

    In the past, when the City wanted some major thoroughfarw change made (altering the one-way pair of Hopkins/ Guadalupe or LBJ/Guadalupe past the Square, TxDOT has offered to dedicate those roads lock, stock and barrel to the City–signalization, dealing with the Railroads,minor repairs, administration of rights-of way, reconstruction, major maintenance and repair–the whole enchilada.

    These offers would seem to rid the State of a nuisance they created and are trapped in, and leave costs,etc. to an argumentative partner who is ALWAYS fielding crazy “new” ideas that have usually come and gone years before. The players and voices and the atmosphere change now and then, but those street segments, like “Old Man River,” just keep rollin’ along. Wait until the Commuter Rail Line comes to the fore. THEN see who should be the “party of the first part.” And who is first in liability.

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