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

April 21st, 2008
Former mobile home park will see new life as Habitat homes

Managing Editor

San Marcos Habitat for Humanity is preparing for future home construction on the site of a former mobile home park shut down by city inspectors about a year and a half ago.

Until January 2007, the Belvin Street Mobile Home Park occupied three city lots totaling about five acres in the Westover neighborhood. Habitat for Humanity later bought the property from Martindale resident Bill Hoch and is preparing to build homes for low-income families as part of its non-profit qualified assistance program.

City council members in recent weeks agreed to abandon a swath right-of-way through the property dedicated in 1910 as Henry Street but never built.

The property was one of two mobile home parks off Hopkins Street that fell under the scrutiny of city inspectors in 2006, racking up dozens of health and safety code violations, according to public records. A dozen trailers at the nearby Chaparral mobile home park and one at Belvin were condemned and ordered removed. Other trailers had dangerous wiring, leaky sewer connections and both parks, the reports state, were infested with flies and insects attracted by animal fecal matter.

Facing fines of up to $2,000 per violation a day, Chapparal’s owner, Jimmy Umstattd of Austin, decided to shut his trailer park down later that year and redevelop the property, then-Interim City Attorney Andy Quittner said at the time. The Belvin Street park was closed shortly thereafter.

The property sits down the street from another Habitat project dedicated late last year. San Marcos Habitat for Humanity has built ten homes since 1997.

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