I think our consultants, and Rowlett staff, P&Z, and City Council's acceptance of some of the consultants recommendations without oversight is a mistake. I think they "blew it" on the vacant land along the north side of Rowlett, which includes Northshore. I think the land to the north, with the exception of the intersections, is clearly the highest and best use for upscale housing. This housing will accommodate the upper management of the offices and high tech industries developing along US 75, and the Richardson high tech business park. We have turned down at least two $80 million developments that prove up this demand. I have yet to see any evidence to support the offices and warehouses proposed by the consultants and the apparent forthcoming acceptance by City Council.
However, to the south of the city, there are monumental opportunities for commercial development. Any commercial development that can be seen from I-30, including Robertson Park, offer huge and long term development opportunities. Can you even imagine the view to travelers of I-30 when crossing the bridge and looking to the north? Rowlett would have the greatest "Here I am" sign in the metroplex. The development opportunities on the point of Robertson Park are extraordinary. Only slight less than extraordinary, is the development of the shoreline leading west from the Dalrock exit all the way back to the tollway bridge. A true real estate developer should go "ga-ga" over those sites. We should be working on solving problems on the south Rowlett land.
Downtown looks pretty good. I think we're on the right track there.
We should be hearing more about the 100 acres east of the Community Centre. Is this being saved for someone?
We need some lakeside parks suitable for small craft landings. We need to push the charm of small watercraft. It is very family oriented and offers a superb infusion of lifestyle charm. Lifestyle makes other people want to live here. Demand is what makes your balance sheet look better.
The "Wellness Area" (bad name) has a lot of potential, but it is going to be more difficult to "tweak." The new addition to the hospital is certainly going to help the demand in the area, but there are not large tracts of land to help mold the area. The housing is relatively new and real estate values are stable to upward. There is some concern about the new apartments, but these are definitely upscale apartments. They are an upscale design with a half million dollar entry into the proposed Scenic Park and the rents are expensive. ($1100/mo. for a 1 bedroom). My granddaughter and her family just rented a 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartment that is in excellent condition (fairly new) in a very good location in Garland for $800/mo. She is not trash. She has her Master's degree in Psychology. If built, I think the new proposed apartments will attract a pretty upscale professional group.
There's more but I gotta go. All the above did not cost you a cent. I give it, for what's it worth, for free. The consultants have cost you $3/4 million. I would prefer that they work on something that helps Rowlett rather than hurt it. My opinion, of course.