Community Impact Bay Area Edition July 2020

BAY AREA EDITION

VOLUME 2, ISSUE 12  JULY 10 AUG. 6, 2020

ONLINE AT

2020 EDI T ION REAL ESTATE

Coronavirus pandemic spurs shift towardBayArea suburbandevelopment

buyer might back out based on fac- tors they could not see virtually, from the drive into the neighbor- hood and appearance of area homes to local road conditions, he said. “They feel at home when they have found the home, and you don’t get that benet from doing it via video,” he said. While Spicer said the virtual aspect of selling homes during a pandemic has been useful in some ways, it has complicated the process in others. Some buyers will tour only vacant homes, and many photogra- phers or other support team mem- bers will not go into a property if the seller is still in the house. “When I walk into a house, or any agent walks into a house, they don’t know who’s been there and how careful they’ve been or not been,” he said.

BY COLLEEN FERGUSON

The coronavirus pandemic has ipped the residential and commer- cial real estate industries on their heads in the Bay Area as agents and experts attempt to navigate the development and sale process with virtual tools. City ocials said the dynamics of League City in particu- lar could change for good as a result of the new routines brought about by coronavirus-adapted lifestyles. Real estate agents have experi- enced a new hurdle amid the pan- demic: buyers making a decision after a virtual tour, then backing out once they see it in person. Potential homeowners can look at homes via video tour or FaceTime, but the experience of walking inside a home cannot be replaced virtually, said Steve Spicer, a Houston-area Realtor who manages a team of agents in the Clear Lake area. A

The Bay Area on May 15 received over 5 inches of rain, putting local drainage projects and ood mitigation eorts back on residents' radars.

COURTESY SHELLY STEUBING VILLARREAL

Bay Area prepares for busy hurricane season during COVID19

ood-prone subdivisions showed up at League City City Council’s May 26meet- ing to voice concerns. “Every time we have a hard rain … [we’re] just waiting for our houses to ood. It doesn’t take a hurricane any- more,” The Meadows resident Ruth Thompson told City Council. “We have become the dam, and it’s like a swim- ming pool.” Now, the entire Bay Area is facing what meteorologists expect will be a more active hurricane season, all during COVID-19, which adds new wrinkles to preparation and response, ocials said. “We can do all the planning in the

BY JAKE MAGEE

With a multimillion-dollar bond vote for drainage projects in the rearview mirror and a more active hurricane sea- son in the midst of a global pandemic ahead, many Bay Area residents are still living in fear of potential ooding. On May 15, some areas of League City received over 5 inches of rain in about one hour, making it one of the heaviest rainfalls the city has seen since voters in May 2019 approved a $73 million bond for numerous drainage projects around the city. The ooding residents endured was worrisome. Several residents from

CONTINUED ON 20

Before the pandemic, 85% of League City residents who work full time commuted to work outside the city.

CONTINUED ON 22

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

WHERE DO YOU GO WHEN THE HAMMER MISSES THE NAIL AND FINDS YOURS?

Our ER is Open. Ready. And Safe. Emergencies are one-of-a-kind events. You don’t know when, or how, or where they’re going to happen. But you do know that when an emergency takes place, you’ll want an Emergency Room you can count on. Especially now, when our community continues to battle COVID-19, you need to know that there’s a hospital ER that’s open, ready, and safe for you and your family. And we are. For more information, visit us at StLukesHealth.org/Here-Always.

Here, always.

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

THIS ISSUE

CONTENTS

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

IMPACTS

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Now Open, Coming Soon &more TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES 9 El Dorado Boulevard COMMUNITY 10 Response to George Floyd’s death HEALTH CARE 11 COVID19 case counts

MARKET TEAM GENERAL MANAGER Cathy Turner, cturner@communityimpact.com EDITOR Jake Magee REPORTER Colleen Ferguson

FROMCATHY: Welcome to our annual Real Estate Edition, where we take an in-depth look at the local real estate market in the Bay Area. Our front-page real estate story focuses on the eect COVID-19 is having on our residential and commercial properties. On Page 13, we include sales trends compared to last year, and this year’s issue features a home improvement guide on Page 17. We hope you will nd this useful!

GRAPHIC DESIGNER Justin Howell ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Lara Estephan METRO LEADERSHIP PUBLISHER Jason Culpepper ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Kristina Shackelford MANAGING EDITOR Marie Leonard ART PRODUCTIONMANAGER Tessa Hoee CORPORATE LEADERSHIP PUBLISHERS AND FOUNDERS John and Jennifer Garrett GROUP PUBLISHER Traci Rodriguez EXECUTIVE EDITOR Joe Warner John and Jennifer Garrett began Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 in Pugerville, TX. The company’s mission is to build communities of informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. Today we operate across six metropolitan areas, providing hyperlocal, nonpartisan news produced by our full-time journalists in each community we serve. BECOMEA#COMMUNITYPATRON CREATIVE DIRECTOR Derek Sullivan SALES DIRECTOR Tess Coverman WHOWE ARE

Cathy Turner, GENERALMANAGER

Real EstateEdition

FROMJAKE: As if the world couldn’t get crazy enough with COVID-19, now police departments around the country are being revamped in the wake of the national response to the death of George Floyd, Bay Area ocials are preparing for a more active hurricane season, and real estate agents are adjusting to a changing market. And we cover it all! Check inside for the local stories you need to read. Jake Magee, EDITOR

MARKET DATAAT A GLANCE 13 DEVELOPMENT 15 Lago Mar GUIDE 17 Home improvement

THIS ISSUE BY THE NUMBERS

Business openings 6

Local sources 30

Drainage projects planned 21

NEIGHBORHOOD CLOSEUP 19 Westwood

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

IMPACTS

COMPILED BY COLLEEN FERGUSON & JAKE MAGEE

Businesses that have recently opened or are coming soon, relocating or expanding

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EXTENDEDHOURS 9 Armand Bayou Nature Center , 8500 Bay Area Blvd., Pasadena, has extended its hours through Aug. 14. The center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays and noon to 5 p.m. Sun- days. The nature center allows for hiking, kayaking, bird watching and other outdoor activities. 281-474-2551. www.abnc.org TEMPORARY CLOSINGS 10 After announcing in late May that Space Center Houston would reopen July 1, the museum in late June decided to re- main closed until further notice. Originally, ocials planned to reopen rst to mem- bers then to the public for scheduled visits under new safety protocols, but Space Center Houston opted instead to remain closed in response to the growing number of COVID-19 cases in Harris County. The museum has been closed since mid-March. 281-244-2100. www.spacecenter.org CLOSINGS 11 Gym chain 24 Hour Fitness announced June 15 it is permanently closing more than 100 of its gyms nationwide, including one at 2765 S. Gulf Freeway, League City, as it les for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In its June 15 statement, 24 Hour Fitness said it will close locations that are either outdated or in close proximity to other locations to eliminate debt. 832-226-5003. www.24hourtness.com 12 Less than a year after celebrating 40 years in the community, Putt-Putt Fun- House at 806 E. NASA Parkway, Webster, has permanently closed as of late April. The local business featured several activ- ities for families and children, including laser tag, arcade games and more. 281-333-0579. www.puttputtfunhouse.com

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NOWOPEN 1 La Rotisserie House opened March 28 at 601 E. Main St., League City. The eatery oers original and spicy rotisserie chicken with a variety of sides, including rice, beans, yuca fries, sweet plantains and potato salad, all made fresh daily. 281-525-4170. www.facebook.com/ larotisseriehouseleaguecity REOPENINGS 2 Interfaith Caring Ministries Resale Shop at 803 E. NASA Parkway, Ste. 118, Webster, reopened May 4 after being closed since March 18 due to the coro- navirus pandemic. Prots from the shop, which now requires customers wear face masks, help fund the nonprot’s eorts to help pay the monthly rent or utility bills of working families facing nancial trouble. The nonprot seeks donations of toilet paper, paper towels, diapers, wipes, pet food and feminine hygiene products at its main location, 151 Park Ave., League City. 281-332-2025. www.icmtx.org 3 The Kemah Boardwalk , 215 Kipp Ave., Kemah, reopened all rides June 5. The park celebrated by oering visitors a $39.99 weekend adventure pass that also provides access to the Downtown Aquarium in Houston and the Galveston Island Historic

Pleasure Pier. Kemah Boardwalk restau- rants opened at the beginning of May. 877-285-3624. www.kemahboardwalk.com 4 Pelican Bay , the town of Seabrook’s public swimming pool at 1109 Hammer St., Seabrook, opened for the season June 9 after approval from City Council with updated COVID-19 procedures. Pool passes will not be available this season, and swimmers can use the pool at a limited capacity during two separate daily sessions. 281-291-5777. www.seabrooktx.gov/pool 5 As of June 1, Capt Kidd Charters , 1900 Shipyard Drive, Seabrook, has resumed sailing. The business oers residents the opportunity to sail aboard a 55-foot schooner, the only U.S. Coast Guard-inspected sailboat in the Houston and Galveston region. Residents can en- joy two-hour excursions with sunset and day trips. 281-334-5433. www.captkiddcharters.com 6 Code Ninjas at 3725 E. League City Parkway, Ste. 140, League City, re- sumed operations as of early June with precautions to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Drop-in sessions are limited to 10 children, a receptionist will take customers’ temperatures before they are allowed inside, and some activities are

not available until further notice, among other changes. 281-339-7482. www.codeninjas.com COMING SOON 7 Board & Brush Creative Studio plans to open in August after leasing 1,613 square feet in League City Plaza at I-45 and FM 518. The business’s goal is to turn customers into “DIY masters” by teaching them how to turn raw materials into unique projects. Board & Brush trains cus- tomers in sanding, staining and otherwise personalizing the look of wood and other materials. www.boardandbrush.com RELOCATIONS 8 Mind Body Solutions relocated to its new address at 210 Genesis St., Ste. C, Webster, on May 27. The business was previously located at 106 Pecan Drive, Friendswood. The functional medicine clin- ic has a mission to provide the community with safe and natural health and wellness answers. Mind Body Solutions treats at- tention decit disorder, allergies, anxiety, arthritis, depression, eczema and much more. The business oered coupons for referring friends during a grand opening sale. 281-616-3816. www.nutrition-houston.com

THIS INFORMATION IS ACCURATE AS OF JUNE 29. FOLLOW COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM FOR THE LATEST BUSINESS AND RESTAURANT NEWS UPDATES.

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

“Cancer, you’re nomatch for our expertise”

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

DOUBLING LANES Once complete, El Dorado Boulevard will have two lanes in each direction along with an adjacent 10-foot-wide hike and bike trail.

ONGOING PROJECTS

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West Walker Street improvements This road between League City Parkway and FM 646 will be enhanced to im- prove trac ow. Turn lanes have been added to enter subdivisions, trac signals are under design, and the road’s intersections at League City Parkway and FM 646 will be improved. The city will add a right turn lane for north- and southbound Walker Street, add an extra lane on Walker Street in both directions and extend the left turn lanes along League City Parkway. Timeline: fall 2019-late 2020 Cost: $6.17 million Funding source: city of League City

Landscaping Power poles

Hike and bike trail

Landscaping

Landscaping 17-foot median SOURCES: HARRIS COUNTY PRECINCT 2, HOUSTON CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT ECOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER Two 12-foot driving lanes Two 12-foot driving lanes

BY JAKE MAGEE El DoradoBoulevardwidening underway After a fewmonths of delays, the widening of El Dorado Boulevard in Clear Lake is ocially underway. According to the oces of Houston Mayor Pro TemDave Martin and Harris County Precinct 2 Commissioner

will also be modications to existing trac signals on Brook Forrest Drive and Clear Lake Boulevard. “I am excited to partner with the city of Houston and City Council Mem- ber Dave Martin to see this project come to fruition,” Garcia said in a press release. “This project will improve the mobility and safety in the region and provides us with an opportunity for future hike and bike trails.” Martin also expressed excitement. “This is a vital road infrastructure project that will address mobility issues in this fast-growing region,” Martin said in another release. “With the help of Harris County Precinct 2, we are glad to ocially break ground on this long-awaited project.” Originally, the project was going to begin in February, but crews ran into snags that delayed the project. Last summer, crews removed about 100 trees along the length of the project to allow CenterPoint Energy to relocate power lines. However, Cen- terPoint determined not enough trees were removed, delaying the work.

Ocials believe the project serves two main purposes: alleviating trac congestion and promoting health. “Congestion on El Dorado has increasingly become a concern for area residents. Widening the road will increase capacity and improve the ow of trac on this busy roadway,” Garcia said. “Once the project is complete, the additional lanes will help people get to and fromwork.” Harris County Precinct 2 is creating a parks and trails master plan, and part of the study, which is expected to be completed in March 2021, includes assessing future connecting trails to the hike and bike trail that will be built along El Dorado. “Healthy living is at the top of my agenda for residents [in] Precinct 2,” Garcia said. “Additional trails to encourage walking and biking will give people the opportunity to get outside and get moving. It’s also important to my oce to connect the various neighborhoods all around the precinct via hike and bike trails so people have a way to see their neighbors without having to get in their cars.” Additionally, the project includes building a new two-lane, 150-foot-long bridge across Horsepen Bayou. There

Adrian Garcia, the work began May 27. The $6.6 million project will widen El Dorado from a two-lane to a four- lane road between Clear Lake City Boulevard and Horsepen Bayou. Harris County is paying for $3.1 million of the project, and the city of Houston is paying the remaining $3.5 million. Phase 1, which includes road work, will keep trac patterns the same and take until about spring to complete. Phase 2 will include some lane closures as contractors work on compliance issues, such as under- ground stormwater detention, but a timeline for this phase has not been established, though past estimates projected fall 2021. When complete, El Dorado Boule- vard will have four 12-foot lanes—two in each direction—with a 17-foot median. One side of the road will have landscaped areas along with a 10-foot- wide hike and bike trail, according to documents.

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ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF JUNE 30. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT BAYNEWSCOMMUNITYIMPACT.COM. Dickinson Avenue reconstruction About 2.2 miles of Dickinson Avenue between Walker Street and FM 646 will be reconstructed from asphalt to concrete with a 10-foot wide multiuse trail along the road. The project was delayed several months due to ber lines that needed to be relocated. Timeline: January 2019-September 2020 Cost: $7 million Funding sources: Galveston County ($6 million), city of League City ($1 million)

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

Population representation The League City Police Department is focusing on hiring minorities with a goal of having the department’s racial makeup reect the entire community. Today, the department employs a lower percentage of minorities than reside in the city.

Targeted investment Since 2016, Houston’s police budget has grown 15%, while the re department grew 1%. League City’s police budget has grown 17%, while its re department budget has grown 48%. Fire department Police department HOUSTON LEAGUE CITY

LEAGUE CITY

LEAGUE CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT

Asian Black White

Asian Black White

77.6% 10.9%

94.6% 3.5% 1.9%

$1B

$25M $20M $10M $15M

$800M $600M $400M $200M

6.1% 0.1% 1.9% 3.4%

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$5M

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2020

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SOURCES: LEAGUE CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT, U.S. CENSUS BUREAU, CITY OF HOUSTON, CITY OF LEAGUE CITYCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

COMMUNITY

On June 14, hundreds gathered at Clear Springs High School to protest racial injustice and police brutality after the death of native Houstonian George Floyd, who died in Minneapolis police custody in late May.

PHOTO COURTESY JASON KUMELSKI

Houston, League City police departments changing inwake of George Floyd’s death

Houston’s reforms have included the commitment to establish a website for residents to le complaints against Houston police ocers and an execu- tive order by Mayor Sylvester Turner restricting certain use-of-force tactics as well as banning no-knock raids without written permission from the police chief. For nonemergency calls, the Houston Police Department has homeless outreach and mental health response teams, roles some said could work better outside the police. “There’s a lot of reasons to be upset over what happened in Minneapolis, but there’s probably ... no one more upset than the police agencies across the United States who have dedicated their lives to serving the citizens that they do and have an ocer through negligence do something like that because that impacts all of that in a negative fashion,” Ratli said. The overwhelming majority of the department’s ocers are white, but Ratli hopes to see that shift. The department makes an eort to recruit people of color through local colleges with minority populations, sur- rounding police academies and other statewide eorts, Ratli said. If residents ever have an issue with a League City ocer, Ratli encouraged them to le a formal complaint. When an ocer violates public trust, no one wants them gone more than the department’s other employees, Ratli said. Colleen Ferguson and Emma Whalen contributed to this report.

BY JAKE MAGEE

city was not aected by Floyd’s death. League City police Chief Gary Ratli said the department is going to con- tinue de-escalation, use-of-force, race and bias training while recognizing there is room for improvement. “Could we be better? We’re always searching for ways to become better,” Ratli said. “We’re always looking for ways to improve what we do.” A protest took place locally in the Bay Area as well in mid-June. Durshun Shah, Hannah Kuecker and Layla Vital, all rising seniors at Clear Springs High School, organized a peaceful protest against police brutality and inequality on the afternoon of June 14. Nearly 300 people of all ages attended, Vital said, including League City Mayor Pat Hallisey and U.S. District 14 candidate Adrienne Bell. The students’ goal was to encourage their peers to pay atten- tion to social issues and understand the importance of taking action locally. The group chose to start and end the demonstration at their high school, Shah said, because they want to see more discussions about race and inequality happening in the district’s schools. “I hope that we’re going to get the ball rolling talking about this,” Vital said. “I just hope it sparks more empathy for the issues people of color have to go through.” The group spoke at a League City City Council meeting June 9. Kuecker said they have formed a loose agenda, including goals related to making local education more inclusive and

transparent. Police reform is also at the top of their agenda; Kuecker said they would like to see the basic tenets of the proposed Justice in Policing Act of 2020 applied in League City, regardless of what happens with the bill at a federal level. Ratli said he was upset by the video of Floyd’s death, in which a for- mer Minneapolis police ocer pinned Floyd by the neck until he died. “We’ve been training our ocers for years on how to mitigate positional asphyxia,” Ratli said. “The death of this individual should never have occurred and wouldn’t have occurred in this department.” Ratli said everyone around the country has dierent viewpoints on how to improve policing because there are varying levels of accountability between police departments and the communities they serve. “This situation breaks everybody’s heart. It caused a lot of folks to check their faith in the police, and I under- stand,” Ratli said. “[But] everybody’s not the same. Every department should be judged on and handled by their own accord and not by the actions of other departments.” One thing not previously covered in the department’s policies is the use of chokeholds. As a result of Floyd’s death, the department put language in its policies to indicate ocers are not allowed to use chokeholds to restrain suspects except in the rare circumstances deadly use of force is authorized to neutralize a threat.

Stepping aside to admire the sight, Houston resident Alonzo Perrin watched June 2 as some of an esti- mated 60,000 demonstrators marched through downtown Houston. “I knowwhat it’s like to face injus- tice as a Black man,” he said. “To see people of all ethnicities here, it really shows we’re making progress, but we do still have a long way to go.” A late-May video of native Housto- nian George Floyd’s death in Minneap- olis police custody spurred nationwide protests such as the one in Houston and a few in League City and the Bay Area seeking justice and police reform. Less than a week later, another demonstration called on Houston City Council members to delay a vote on the city budget and reallocate some, if not all, of the proposed $964 million set aside for the police department to social services aimed at addressing poverty and mental illness. Over the sounds of protesters’ chants outside City Hall, council members voted unanimously to approve the budget without any changes to police funding. City leaders instead pushed for a dierent strategy, choosing to focus on task forces, committee meetings and other public input processes before implementing any widespread reforms. The response has not been as severe in League City, but still, the City Council has indicated they have no intention of defunding the police. However, that does not mean the

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

HEALTH CARE Coronavirus cases surging in the BayArea

RISING CASES Since the beginning of June, daily cases counts have been increasing in Galveston and Harris counties. C O V I D  1 9 C S E S P E R D A Y

BY JAKE MAGEE

Friendswood. On June 22, Harris County saw its single-highest number of new cases at 1,994. Since mid-June, Harris County has seen over 1,000 cases almost daily. The jump makes sense considering May 1 was the beginning of Texas reopening its economy, Galveston County Local Health Author- ity Philip Keiser said. The higher number of cases is a trend Keiser said could continue for months. “I think it’s clearly a general lack of social distancing,” Keiser said. As businesses have reopened, residents have been gathering in close proximity to go to bars, restaurants, stores or the beach. As it stands, Galveston County is under Gov. Greg Abbott’s orders when it comes to reopening and cannot do much to quell the surge in cases, Keiser said. League City ocials held a ceremony June 17 to mark the city’s reopening, and mem- bers of the League City Emer- gency Turnaround Taskforce provided businesses with the city’s Workplace Protection Pledge at the event. The pledge, which comes with a reopening toolkit of recom- mended safety practices, was created by the taskforce as a way for businesses to demon- strate their commitment to

protect their employees and customers through signage on display at their establishment. Harris County in late June issued an order requiring businesses to make masks mandatory for employees and patrons. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo elevated the county’s COVID-19 threat level from “signicant” to “severe” on the afternoon of June 26, which is the highest threat level possible. While some are washing their hands and wearing masks in public while main- taining distance from others, many are not, contributing to the spike, Keiser said. “Some are doing it well, and ... some of them just make you cringe,” he said. Recent protests over police brutality and racial injustice could factor into increasing infection rates in Galveston County, but the county saw fewer protests than Houston and Harris County, where protests are likely a greater contributor to potential case count increases, Keiser said. Galveston County hospitals have the bed capacity to handle the surge in cases, but that does not mean there will not be challenges, Keiser said. The number of COVID-19 patients in general ward hospitals in Harris County hit a new high on June 30, with 1,630 people reported as hospitalized. At the end

GALVESTON COUNTY

As the economy continues to restart and businesses have begun to reopen, COVID-19 cases are surging in Galveston and Harris counties, resulting in the highest number of new daily cases since the pan- demic began. From June 21-27, Galveston County sawmore than 1,000 new COVID-19 cases—the most the county has seen in a single week since the outbreak began. An average of nearly 150 cases were reported a day during that time, which is more new cases than the county saw over the course of three weeks in May. The number of coronavirus cases in the county nearly tripled during June, according to the health department’s case count database: There were a total of 847 conrmed cases on June 1, with the county passing the 1,000-case mark June 8 and hitting 2,000 cases about two weeks later on June 23. An additional 231 cases were reported June 30, bringing the total to 3,293. Outbreaks at six nursing homes in Friendswood, League City and Texas City have infected more than 200 people, per health depart- ment data. The outbreaks account for roughly one in every six cases in League City and in Texas City, and less than 5% of the total cases in

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2K

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SOURCES: GALVESTON COUNTY HEALTH DISTRICT, HARRIS HEALTH SYSTEM COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

of June, ICU occupancy rates in the Texas Medical Center were around 97% related to operational beds. Once those beds are fully occupied, ocials will unlock more ICU beds in two phases. Hidalgo said at a June 30 Harris County Commissioners Court meeting the public must take actions to avoid having to use those beds. “That’s no way to run a society, that you’re doubling up, tripling up rooms, importing sta, taking beds

for heart attacks and strokes and turning them into ICU beds,” she said. “That’s not the goal. We need to not get there, which is why we really need people to stay home.” Many residents are tired of COVID-19, quarantining and social distancing, which is understandable; the economy cannot stay shut down for- ever, but that does not mean residents should be careless, Keiser said. Shawn Arrajj contributed to this report.

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

Leading Medicine IN CLEAR LAKE

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER IS PROUD TO SAY THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSOR

SILVER SPONSOR

2020 EDI T ION REAL ESTATE

D.R. Horton, America’s Builder, is committed to you when you need us. Visit, click, call and connect with our knowledgeable sta TODAY about your new home! Model homes are open daily. Go to drhorton.com/ Houston or call 281-870-2199 for more information.

2020 REAL ESTATE EDITION

COMPILED BY JAKE MAGEE

The real estate market is beginning to see the eects of COVID-19, with the number of homes sold in the Bay Area down over the past year compared to the previous year. Homes were also on the market for longer throughout the past year compared to the previous year. The one area seeing opposite trends is ZIP code 77062, which is in the Clear Lake area. 201820 BAY AREA REAL ESTATE MARKET AT A GLANCE

DAYS ON THEMARKET AVERAGE June 2018-May 2019

June 2019-May 2020

225

77059

77573

77058

77059

77062

146

45

42

34

51

60

73 +21.7%

-6.7%

+50%

77058

77565

45

77062

77565

518

39

34 -12.8%

63

70

+11.1%

77573

N

HARRIS COUNTY

GALVESTON COUNTY 55 57 +3.6%

48

49

+2%

HOMES SOLD NUMBER OF

June 2018-May 2019

June 2019-May 2020

HOME SALES PRICE AVERAGE

June 2018-May 2019

June 2019-May 2020

95

100

355

357

-5.5%

+8%

+2%

-5%

90

108

362

339

1,576

-4.6%

1,504

TOTAL HOMES SOLD IN BAY AREA

June 2018-May 2019

June 2019-May 2020

3.8%

3.7%

77058

77573

77059

77062

77565

14.4%

14.1%

Harris County

Galveston County

2,483 homes sold

2,403 homes sold

$313,000 $317,000 +1.1%

$278,000 $292,000 +5.3%

14.3%

15.1%

4%

4.5%

62.6%

63.5%

SOURCE: BETTER HOMES & GARDENS REAL ESTATE GARY GREENECOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

13

BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

NEW HOMES FROM THE $200s TO $490s LOCATED ACROSS SOUTHEAST HOUSTON

1. FRIENDSWOOD TRAILS Friendswood, TX

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Applies to D.R. Horton and Express Homes in the following communities located in Friendswood, League City and Texas City, TX. Prices, plans, features and options are subject to change without notice. Additional restrictions may apply. Prices shown are base home prices and do not include closing cost and fees, modifications to plans and custom features which may substantially affect final cost of the home. Please check the accuracy of informationprovidedwith your Sales Counselor prior topurchasing. Features noted above couldbe plan&or lot specific. 07/2020 CALL TODAY!

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14

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

REAL ESTATE 2020EDITION

DEVELOPMENT

CRYSTAL CLEAR

Land Tejas’ Crystal Lagoon will be a unique destination for Bay Area residents, ocials said.

WE LOOKED FORAN AMENITY THATWOULD

The lagoon has more than a mile of shoreline and stretches more than a quarter mile end-to-end. The lagoon holds 24million gallons of water. The lagoon’s liner system is large enough to cover the entire Houston Galleria mall or 14 NFL football elds.

The lagoon’s surface is equivalent to approximately 1,350 home swimming pools. Crystal Lagoon’s technology uses 2%of the energy and 1%of the chemicals compared to conventional swimming pool technology.

REALLYDIFFERENTIATE THIS COMMUNITYFROMANYOTHER. URI MAN , EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT OF LAGO MAR’S DEVELOPER, LAND TEJAS

Crystal Lagoon opens to LagoMar community

SOURCE: LAND TEJASCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

COURTESY LAND TEJAS

BY COLLEEN FERGUSON

Texas City was chosen for the lagoon based on its location along I-45; residents and families are frequently driving south en route to Galveston, and the lagoon will be easier to access than the Galveston seawall, Man said. “We looked for an amenity that would really dierentiate this community from any other,” Man said, adding a gathering space such as Crystal Lagoon helps bring families and communities together. “It’s really a unique amenity that improves the quality of life for those that have access to it.” The coronavirus pandemic did not delay the opening of the lagoon nor will it have a major eect on opera- tions this summer due to the lagoon’s size, Man said. State guidelines are being followed, and residents are being encouraged to make a check-in appointment to avoid large groups of people entering at once. Overall, the lagoon will follow regulations similar

“It’s really something that’s fantas- tic to see,” he said. Lago Mar ocials are ready to begin conversations with hotel, restaurant and retail developers about waterfront development, Man said. The entertainment district will look like a “more beautiful” version of the Kemah Boardwalk when completed, he said. Crystal Lagoon is the largest of any such amenity in the country by length and perimeter, Man said, but its eco-friendly technology ensures only a fraction of the chemicals and energy used to operate a typical swimming pool are necessary. The lagoon is about six times larger than Land Tejas’ rst Crystal Lagoons amenity, which opened in 2018 in the master-planned community of Balmoral in Humble. Lago Mar will consist of 4,500 homes once built out, plus townho- mes and condominiums, Man said.

to those at water parks across the state, he said. Guests will have plenty of space to practice social distancing across the 100 acres of land around the lagoon, making a day at the lagoon just as feasible as a trip to Galveston for Lago Mar residents, Man said. “There’s just no other community that can match this,” he said. “It’s really paradise.”

Residents of Lago Mar, a mas- ter-planned community in Texas City, can spend their days by Crystal Lagoon this summer with public access available as early as 2021. The resident-designated beach and amenities, which opened for use in early June, take up about 35% of the lagoon’s perimeter, said Uri Man, the executive vice president of Lago Mar’s developer, Land Tejas. A 12,000-square-foot public access section, including a residential beach clubhouse and two dierent beaches, is expected to open in 2021 on the lagoon’s west side. Crystal Lagoon oers more than a mile of shoreline and stretches more than a quarter mile end to end. The lagoon’s east side will eventually be home to a mixed-use entertainment district, allowing guests to experi- ence sunset views as they shop and dine, Man said.

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BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

Emergencies Can’t Wait. We’re Here.

LEAGUE CITY HOSPITAL CAMPUS 2240 GULF FREEWAY SOUTH, LEAGUE CITY 77573

CLEAR LAKE HOSPITAL CAMPUS 200 BLOSSOM STREET, WEBSTER 77598

While concerns over COVID-19 have kept many of us from seeking routine medical care, they also have kept some of us from seeking help in an emergency. But emergency care can’t wait! As always, UTMB Health is here to help, with: • Two comprehensive 24/7 Emergency Departments in the Bay Area • Physicians and nurses specially trained and certified in emergency medicine • Full-service UTMB hospitals with multiple specialists adjacent to each of our Emergency Departments • Extra safety measures, including COVID-19 screening for every patient and employee, protective masks and more As always, your health and well-being are our top priorities. We hope you never have a medical emergency. But if you do, please seek qualified care immediately. And know UTMB Health is ready to serve you anytime—safely and expertly.

To learn more: utmbhealth.com/emergency

Caring for You. Always.

The University of Texas Medical Branch is in-network for most major insurance plans.

16

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

REAL ESTATE 2020EDITION

GUIDE

A guide to home and garden projects with advice from local businesses

Keyur Amir is the owner of Ace Hardware, which opened in League City in March. Since opening, sta has been helping customers with lots of outdoor projects, from gardening to fence building, Amir said. Here are some other home project ideas he suggested for Bay Area residents wishing to upgrade their spaces. HOME IMPROVEMENT &MAINTENANCE 2020 Bay Area COMPILED BY COLLEEN FERGUSON

6

3

SIMPLE HOME PROJECTS

1

1 Update your home’s lighting xtures LED lights produce no ultraviolet light and are therefore the only form of lighting that will not damage art or fabric over time. Decor can be better maintained when houses use all LED lighting, not uorescent lighting. 2 Put more lighting in the backyard LED lights can also light up an indoor or outdoor backyard space. 3 Reduce bathroom mold and mildew buildup Any high-moisture area in a house can run the risk of mold and mildew buildup, so the areas under and around sinks and tubs need to be cleaned regularly. 4 Install new faucets, countertops or sinks Upgrades such as these are an easy

way to make a space feel newer. Granite countertops are continually popular in contemporary homes, Amir said. 5 When in doubt, tour new homes for ideas It is easier to visualize how improvements will look when seeing them in a home already, so Amir suggested homeowners take a look at properties on the market. Many local agencies are oering virtual property tours. 6 Start a garden League City homeowners have been frequenting the store for supplies to begin or maintain home gardens, Amir said.

4

2

5

AceHardware 1915 W. League City Parkway, Ste. 100, League City 281-316-9992 www.acehardware.com

96

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TIPS FROMA PAINTERWITH SOUTHERN’S BEST HANDYMAN

IZZYMOLINA

Do not rush on color selection: Painters tend to have a color in mind immediately when selecting paint and can end up regretting that color once it is on the wall. Take your time deciding and look at all the dierent shades, he said. “Paint is not just paint”: Molina encouraged painters not to skimp on the quality of the paint because while more expensive does not always mean better, price point and quality are closely connected. Paints at dierent price points may contain more pigments or be easier to touch up than others, and some may give more vibrant or deeper colors.

Use technology to guide you: Smartphone applications can help homeowners visualize a paint color on their walls, and YouTube tutorials can help novice painters brush up on their technique. Condence is key when making home improvements, Molina said, so using the tools at one’s disposal is key. Save time and hire quality help: For homeowners hiring out their painting services, making sure the painters are well-versed in dierent paint grades is important because it can ultimately save both the painters time and the customer money, Molina said. Certain types of paint, particularly cheaper ones, can require up to three coats.

Southern’sBestHandyman 5008 Longshadow Drive, Dickinson 832-851-7891 www.handymanoeaguecity.com

Izzy Molina is the owner of Southern’s Best Handyman, a Dickinson-based home improvement company that specializes in interior and exterior painting, deck building and staining, and drywall repairs and additions. Molina oered tips for homeowners interested in giving their walls some new color this summer.

MAKE A GARDEN

TIPS FOR CHOOSING YOUR CONTAINER

CONTAINER TYPES CAN INCLUDE: • half wooden barrels, buckets or baskets • old bathtubs, galvanized metal tubs, or other tubs or troughs

The bigger the better—larger containers allow for larger root systems and larger plants as well as holding more water for hot days.

• hanging baskets are a good use of extra space and can be used for plants such as herbs or cherry tomatoes

POPULAR VEGETABLES TO GROW

CARE TIPS

• zucchini squash • bush beans

• carrots • beets • radishes • tomatoes • peppers

Watch and treat for insects as needed. Support “climbing” vegetables with cages, twine or a trellis. Liquid fertilizer should be “fed” to plants at least twice per month.

Add about an inch of coarse gravel in the bottom of containers to improve drainage. Plants need at least ve hours of sunlight per day and may need to be watered once or twice per day.

• cabbage • lettuce

• chards

SOURCE: THE OLD FARMER’S ALMANACCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

17

BAY AREA EDITION • JULY 2020

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