Growth In An Oil Town

Infrastructure key to attract commercial, residential developments

Bruce Pearson Pleasanton City Manager

Bruce Pearson Pleasanton City Manager

Pleasanton City Manager Bruce Pearson said it is easy for anyone to see the phenomenal growth pattern we’re witnessing here in Pleasanton.

We’ll begin with the Williamsburg Addition located northeast of the intersection of Goodwin Street and Oakhaven Drive.

Pearson said, “The infrastructure contractor putting in the water, the sewer and streets is on site now in the initial stage of development in the new Williamsburg addition.

“The next thing they will be doing is the City Park portion that will be dedicated over to the City. They asked for a variance to the park land donation and the park plan fees.

“Developers under our subdivision ordinance dedicate a certain amount of property in their residential development for park plan donation so the city will have land set aside for future parks or the developer can pay the park plan fee which is attributable based on how many lots there are in the subdivision.

“The developer, Wade Kempton out of Phoenix, Arizona, opted to take a detention area that has been designated for drainage and develop that portion into a small City Park. Now, the area is not big enough to reach the percentage of the land mass in the subdivision ordinance.

Pearson continued, “However, his investment far surpasses anything one would pay in park land fees. The City Council thought it was a great idea in that it would give us a small park on the west side of the city. It will be perfect for Little League Soccer, seven-eight year olds. There will be several picnic tables. The area will be totally vegetated with landscaping. There will be a walking area around the rim of the park. That’s what’s left to do in that phase. I’m thinking that’s the fourth phase, and final phase before housing development in the new phase of Williamsburg.

“Obviously, for Kempton to invest the type of money it takes to build this park, he could have paid the park plan fees and walked away. It would have been much economic leverage in his development. However, I think he saw the value in building the park, making his lots and his homes more marketable.

I asked Pearson if he knew how many lots would be developed in the Williamsburg addition. He said, “I believe there are sixty-six.

When asked about other new housing developments in the process now, Pearson said, “Yes, Timberhill Two being developed by Richter Construction. They’re putting the infrastructure in for that second phase up there. I believe it’s about twenty-six lots.

“We’re in the early stages of plan review and plat review for the next phase of Bonita Vista on Airport Road, being developed by Dowdy Real Estate.

“The Council just approved the preliminary plat with some variances for what’s being called Oakhaven Townhomes which will be built on a twenty-eight acre parcel located on Oakhaven right off of Oaklawn. The developer there is going to build, I believe, about 118 townhomes. They’re going to be four sides, all-masonry. They will be marketed for sale or leaseto sale. That preliminary plat was approved by the Council two weeks ago. So, once we move to the final plat, we’ll be looking for infrastructure plans from them for review and ultimate build-out. That group is from San Antonio and Plano and they’ve expressed their interest to have even more of a presence here in Pleasanton.

Continuing, Pearson said, “As far as housing is concerned, we’re still permitting homes in Riata Subdivision and still permitting homes in the Jamestown development. I believe there are two or three homes under construction in that area. In Riata, there are three or four being built. Usually three to five are under construction in the first phase of Bonita on Airport Road.

“Once we accept the infrastructure for Williamsburg, it will certainly broaden our market for residential construction.

“We are in negotiation and conversations with several different folks right now about other residential development. They’ve not actually submitted anything to the City but we’ve had some concept meetings. Properties are either in the feasibility studies stage or they have been purchased.

“Obviously with the properties that are purchased, we will wait for development. Those folks, who are in the feasibility stage and under contract, obviously, they have to do their due diligence in other areas other than just the building. There’s environmental, drainage and those types of things they look at under a feasibility plan.

Pearson said, “The commercial market remains strong here in Pleasanton. We have a number of commercial projects going on at one time or another. We’re in conversation stages with folks about other economical development opportunities here in Pleasanton. We see that the economic development market here remains strong.

I asked about the new Valero Cornerstore development at the intersection of Oaklawn and Airport Road. Pearson said, “Valero has been issued a site development permit to put the public infrastructure in that will support the project. That includes a water main extension. We’ll be looping two water mains together. That will be on the north side of Highway 97 (Oaklawn).

When asked about the three and a half acres or so of land that Valero is developing there, Pearson said, “There will be a complete, separate, diesel fueling station, apart from the unleaded gas fueling area. That will be for large trucks or dieselpowered vehicles. It’s not going to be the traditional islands with both gasoline and diesel. There will be islands just for trucks located behind the store.

“We have reviewed those plans and permitted the Valero job. They’re out there setting up their erosion control at this time. It’s my understanding that they will begin work on the installation of the twelve-inch sewer collection main with associated manholes and then they’ll do the water after that.

“We have also permitted the site development permit for Taco Bell. They’re laying about six hundred feet of sewer main at this time on the north side of 97 (Oaklawn) to support their development. They’ll be tying into the existing sewer main coming back to the east. They’re going to lay out 320 feet of 12 inch water line. There are two water lines that are tapped.

“I believe they’re wanting to open about November 1 (2013). What’s critical now is to get that infrastructure in the ground to support it so they can have water and wastewater service and fire protection

“This will be a franchised store and the owning group is out of Del Rio.

“When asked about the new structure being built next to Belmont Motel on Oaklawn, Pearson said, “This development is by Mr. Greg DiCaro, a local developer.”

Regarding hotels and motels, Pearson said, “Right now the Microtel Hotel is in the final phases of construction. My understanding is that in the next 90 to 120 days the Microtel will be completed and will have 83 rooms.

“In operation now, the Hampton Inn has sixty-three rooms and the Best Western Plus has 59 rooms. In the last year and a half we’ve seen the Eagle Ford Lodge, with 82 rooms, built here on the north side of Pleasanton on 281, and there’s the Belmont Motel on Oaklawn with 35 rooms,

“Oak Pointe Estates is in the planning and development stages for their huge project on the north side of Pleasanton.

“We have had some preliminary discussions and done reviews along with planning issues to be addressed concerning another hotel to be constructed and we’re waiting for them to submit. It is our understanding that their intentions are to move forward. We’ve had two planning meetings with them. This will possibly be the biggest hotel yet in Pleasanton. It will be a large hotel.

Pearson continued, “We’re in various stages of visiting with people. We’re looking to develop economic opportunities around the Pleasanton Airport. Parcels of land in that area have been purchased. Some individuals out of Plano and Connecticut have bought a 22 acre parcel of land on Airport Road. They also own a 60 acre parcel on the west side of the Airport runway. This is not the same individuals from Plano developing the Oakhaven Townhomes.

“There’s going to be some commercial economic activity around the Airport.

I asked Bruce to talk about paving going on at the Industrial Park.

He responded, “They’re out there with the distributor right now, applying the penetrations on it today (Friday, Sept. 13). In layman’s terms, they’ll apply a double penetration, a double layer of surface.

“After that, we’re going to rehab the lower road in the Park (City Park alongside the Atascosa River). We did the main roads there a year and a half ago.

“Our work crews have plans for the North Town fire station where they’ll rehab the parking lot.

“Other things we’ve done, most recently, internally, we’ve completely rehabilitated the irrigation system at the soccer field at the River Park. That necessitated a complete repositioning of all 56 sprinklers down there for proper coverage and proper spacing.

“We also have installed a new irrigation system at the softball field park located on Downey Street, behind the Pleasanton Primary School. That system is an automatic irrigation system. We are going to build a secure electrical box there for the control of the system. We’re also going to redo the light controls for the softball field where we’re going to put an electrical system on a timer instead of an off-on switch.

“That irrigation at the softball field has been programmed into the capital budget this past year.

“Pearson continued, “Everything’s going well over here. I’ll quote what our project manager told the Council regarding the new Civic Center, Library and Information Center in downtown Pleasanton on Main Street. ‘You have a great architect and you have one of the top contractors in South Texas building it.

“Things are going well in the new Center construction. We feel like it will be turned over to us sometime in February. The Librarian and I entertained quotes on furniture and other furnishings for that part of the Center.

“In the Civic Center portion of the Center we’ve even looked at a stage so that when we have wedding or anniversary receptions, some of these types of things where there is music, we’ll have something for them to set up on and play from. Right now they’re working on the wall board and roof.”

Continuing, “We have sent the first load of sandstone rock, native to this area, to Comfort to have it milled. One of the local landowners, Tobin Hill, has been very generous to help us with that. Mr. Hill is excavating it off his land. To have that Freedom Wall, the Council was very emphatic and heard from the citizens, too, that we needed to have something that’s local to us.

“The first group of rock came back milled and the project manager reported to me that it looks good and it’s going to work out well.

I asked about the walking area east of the structure. Pearson said, “It’s going to be a combination of concrete and bricks. Also, the Library had sold some memorial pavers and they’re trying to sell some more. We’re going to have those pavers installed at the west side entrance to the building. I believe there are about 150 or more that have been sold.

“Our main focus right now has been furniture, books and shelves. Does she have enough shelving for the books? We’re also looking at some electronic readers, if you will, for the books. There will be readers at the doors and counter. Also tags on the books where the books will automatically be checked out and checked back in. That way they will have better control and assessment of the inventory. A lot of that is through the donation from the Library Foundation and the Library Board.

Pleasanton is moving forward and growing ‘by leaps and bounds’.

Bruce said, “We’re in various stages of talks with interested parties. We have met with folks from all over the country. Most recently we’ve had a group from Austin that’s very interested in doing something here in Pleasanton. No plans have been submitted from this group and, to our knowlege, no land has been bought. But that’s usually how these things go. Folks come in and they get a ‘feel for the community’. They go back and they reassess and they work their business model and if they want to move forward, they begin to look for land or parcels of land.

Microtel Inn & Suites being constructed on Oaklawn.

Microtel Inn & Suites being constructed on Oaklawn.

New 59 room Best Western Plus Hotel on Oaklawn.

New 59 room Best Western Plus Hotel on Oaklawn.

Recently built 63 room Hampton Inn on Oaklawn.

Recently built 63 room Hampton Inn on Oaklawn.

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