The Elgin City Council approved a development and consent agreement with a proposed 1,200-home development on County Line Road during last Tuesday’s meeting.
The proposed development, called Altessa, would be located on the east side of County Line Road and developed by Clayton Property Group, Inc. dba Brohn Homes, the same developer that created Saratoga Farms. In January, the council agreed to a letter of intent for the development for the Altessa development and the municipal utility district (MUD) that would be created to provide the development with wastewater services through the city.
The 283-acre development would include 1,200 single-family units, 63 acres of parkland—including seven miles of walking trails—and two acres for a public safety services site.
Additionally, the developers are willing to set aside 12 acres as a potential site for a new campus with the Elgin Independent School District; however, the developers are waiting for clarification from the school district about their plan, city manager Thomas Mattis said. If the 12 acres are not used for the school district, Altessa would donate $200 per lot to the school district.
“It’s our goal to try and be sensitive to the growth issues that the school will be facing,” Mattis said.
Two major components of the agreement involve wastewater services and County Line Road.
The agreement states the MUD will pay for the neighborhood’s interior wastewater collection system and the line connecting it to the city system, as well as impact fees per home and capacity reserved for Altessa in the city’s wastewater treatment plant. Any costs for public infrastructure and for providing wastewater services to the district is the responsibility of the MUD.
The Altessa MUD would also be expected to contribute a proportional amount to upgrade County Line Road. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has a plan for removing the curve from FM 1100 near the high school and widening County Line Road.
County Line Road could see a total of over 2,500 new homes due to developments currently in various stages, including The Homestead, Lone Willow and Eagles Landing phase 2.
The council approved three items related to the Altessa development, two of which related to the creation of the MUD. The third resolution terminated an annexation development agreement with the previous property owners from 2015, which is no longer necessary under the new agreement.
Also at last week’s meeting:
Proposed budget discussed
Mattis presented the proposed budget for the city for the 2019-2020 fiscal year.
All appropriations for the proposed budget totals a little over $14.7 million dollars. The budget is based on the same property tax rate and utility rates as last year.
However, Mattis said Elgin, like all Texas cities, could face challenges in coming years as a result of the most recent session of the Texas Legislature. The Texas Property Tax Reform and Transparency Act of 2019 requires smaller cities such as Elgin to hold an election to approve a property tax revenue of 8% higher than the previous year. As Elgin sees a growth in its tax base, property tax rates may have to be lowered in the future in order to stay under the 8% revenue increase.
“More so than usual, this year’s budget is more of a dynamic document as a result of significant variables that could impact our revenue stream,” Mattis said.
The budget also includes $140,000 to adjust compensation for city employees based on a comprehensive analysis of their current pay.
City moves forward on TxDOT grant
The council adopted a resolution supporting the city’s application for a Transportation Alternatives and Safe Routes to School (TA/ SRTS) grant from TxDOT.
The proposed project would include new sidewalk on South Main street from Brenham Street to Alamo Street; on Alamo Street and Nina Street; on North Main Street from 11th Street to Lexington Road; and would add handicap-accessible ramps throughout the area of the project. Completing the missing or broken sidewalk would provide a complete, accessible route between the downtown district, Elgin Elementary School, Booker T. Washington Elementary School and more neighborhoods and critical areas.
The plan has been reviewed with representatives from entities affected, such as BTW Elementary School, community development director Amy Miller said. The application is due on August 15, and the city would likely hear back from TxDOT towards the end of the year. The resolution is a required step for the grant.
Council adopts public art plan
The council formally adopted the public art plan presented by Emily Koller, chair of the Elgin Main Street Program Design Committee, during the previous meeting on June 2.
The committee began working on the public art plan in late 2017 with a goal of attracting visitors to downtown and celebrating Elgin’s uniqueness. They gathered input from community members about what kind of art they want to see at events such as open houses and events at Sip, Shop & Stroll. The feedback showed they are most interested in landscaping and functional art, such as benches.
The plan also outlines guidelines for proposed public art and a process for submitting art proposals for the downtown area.
Contract awarded for water line
The city awarded a contract to Atlas Construction Corporation for the construction of an 18-inch raw water line on Old McDade Road for about $2.2 million.
The transmission line, which will be the main connection from the city’s wells to the treatment plan, would replace the current decades-old 12-inch line.
The design for the project is already complete, Mattis said.
City engineer Beau Perry said, since not all of the wells can be in operation at the same time because of the narrowness of the existing line taking the raw water to the treatment plant, water treatment and production for the city is limited until the line is upgraded.
“This is a much-needed project,” Perry said.
Five-year plan approved
The council approved the latest Five-Year Capital Improvement Plan, which was previously discussed in more detail on June 18. The decision last week was an official endorsement of the plan, but does not appropriate funding for any of the projects.
Referring to the raw water line discussed in the previous item, which was in the plan, Mayor Pro-Tem Jessica Bega and council member Sue Brashar remarked the city is already working on checking projects off the list.