"I do have to admit that it's better now than when I moved to Rowlett 10 years ago. The Super Target Coming Soon sign sat in that field for years--I deployed to Afghanistan and came back and they had only just broken ground on it. In comparison the new car wash went in very quickly. But did Rowlett need another car wash? How many hotel beds does Rowlett have? (answer: zero). How many bookstores does Rowlett have? (answer: zero). How many movie screens does Rowlett have? (answer: zero). There are some really good restaurants here, but unless someone is passing through on the way to where they are really going (Rockwall, Garland, Dallas...) those will not get noticed. As it is, Rowlett is a bedroom community only and a destination for nothing. I think that's a shame, but someone, it seems, wants it that way. "
Robert, its not quite as slow as you think. We do have a motel, a pretty nice one, at the corner of I-30 and Dalrock Road. Of course, Target anticipated the tollway and got, in my opinion, the best corner in town. However, some of your other comments are quite worthy of comment.
Almost every new business that arrives in town, particularly ones who build a new building, goes thru an "underwriting process." That is a process of studying the demographics and market to see if it justifies starting a new business in Rowlett and risk hundreds of thousands of dollars on a new building. Not only does the business person go thru this process, his/her bank does also. The bank will be putting their money at risk, as well as the business person. It's all based on demographics and marketing skills. Depending on the business, if the bank doesn't agree with the business person, the deal doesn't get done.
What I have been trying to stress on these pages is that Rowlett needs disposable income. We need high income families that buy high income houses. The disposable income that these families bring to town create the demand for the businesses that you rightly point out we don't have. Our eyes play tricks on us. We see the big office buildings and the distribution centers at other locations and think, "Wow, we could use that!!" They would really help our tax base. However, take a little longer look. These big employment centers often require 10 years, or better, to start paying revenues to the city. If Rowlett doesn't grant the tax forgiveness, the owner will go somewhere else. Also, workers go home in the evening.
In my estimation, the market for these large employment centers have not yet been proven up. We hear opinions and glowing reports........but no substance; no absorption data. Not withstanding that fact, how much does a worker from Wylie, Sachse, Richardson, or Rockwall spend in Rowlett while at work here? Not much. Maybe a few lunches and an occasional drink after work. Then, the worker goes home to Wylie, Sachse, Richardson, and Rockwall. Who would spend money and make demands for the services you wish? I think it's the middle and upper management people who would live in Rowlett and work somewhere else. Rowlett is a town of 57,000 people amongst one of the hottest real estate markets in the USA, and we only have two viable subdivisions. We have turned down excellent requests to develop good subdivisions in order to preserve the land for? ........ Offices and Warehouses on a tollway, no less. We have hired some very expensive consultants that push this marketing plan. They need to redirect their skills....in my opinion, of course. There are numbers and observations coursing all thru these posts that I think bear up my claim. We have made our consultants our bosses. No oversight. Unless the above changes, you will not get more than lethargic growth.