Pearland - Friendswood Edition | March 2020

PEARLAND FRIENDSWOOD EDITION

VOLUME 6, ISSUE 4 | MARCH 13-APRIL 9, 2020

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Delayed IvyDistrict to make strides this year Enormity of project, legal issues pose challenges for developer, sources said The Ivy District, a mixed-use project west of Hwy. 288 in Pearland, is moving forward, but the slow nature of the project’s progress leaves an air of mystery around it. Since 2016, developer-funded roads and infrastruc- ture for the development have been built near Hwy. 288. However, work has yet to begin on the project’s buildings despite projections to complete the first phase in 2019, according to Community Impact Newspaper coverage in August 2017. Once the project is solely in private hands, there is only so much the city can do; the speed of the project is up to the developer, Council Member David Little said. "The developers have what they need for the city. They just need to get going on it," Little said. "You can't BY HALEY MORRISON

SPECIAL REPORT

Money on

the line While the roadways and drainage paths throughout the Ivy District are expected to be completed this year, construction for the buildings has yet to begin. Meanwhile, developers have already sunk millions into the site.

future jobs 900

projected assessed value of the land $250M

acres of space 48.5

invested in infrastructure $14.06M

from foreign investors $49.5M

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SOURCES: CITY OF PEARLAND, SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Cities’ park project funding at an impasse

parks by city

Pearland and Friendswood each have a number of public and private green spaces. Here is how many public parks each offers.

BY MORGAN SLUTZKY

Last year, Pearland residents passed a bond to maintain city parks. Now that those proj- ects have been funded, and as the city’s pop- ulation continues to grow, funding for parks and recreation is in a position to move for- ward or backward in priority. City Council Member Adrian Hernandez said his involvement with the parks board and position as executive director of Keep Pearland Beautiful may make him feel more connected to the parks system, where he sees people reach out to the city for events the parks lack the infrastructure to handle.

Keep Pearland Beautiful is a nonprofit orga- nization focused on empowering Pearland residents to take responsibility for their envi- ronment, according to its website. “These are opportunities to bring arts and culture to the city we’re missing out on, and all of that has to do not just with park devel- opment, but economic development, quality of life and more,” Hernandez said. During the last three fiscal years, Pearland allocated around 8%of the budget to its Parks and Recreation department. Though the

Community Parks

PEARLAND 7 community parks 2 dog parks

Dog Parks

FRIENDSWOOD 7 community parks 1 dog park

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SOURCES: CITY OF FRIENDSWOOD, CITY OF PEARLAND/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

THIS ISSUE

CONTENTS

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

IMPACTS

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Now Open, Coming Soon &more

PUBLISHERS AND FOUNDERS John and Jennifer Garrett PUBLISHER-HOUSTONMETRO Jason Culpepper ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Kristina Shackelford GENERAL MANAGER Papar Faircloth, pfaircloth@communityimpact.com EDITORIAL EXECUTIVE EDITOR Joe Lanane MANAGING EDITOR Marie Leonard EDITOR Haley Morrison

FROMPAPAR: As the weather starts to warm up, we know that summer is just around the corner and schools will be out soon. This month we put together a summer camp guide to give you some ideas to keep the kids busy having fun this summer.

Papar Faircloth, GENERALMANAGER

FROMHALEY: This month’s front-page story is about the Ivy District. Researching this story required a Freedom of Information Act request, talking to over seven sources, sifting through over 600 emails, and spending three months researching and writing the story. We hope you enjoy reading it.

REPORTER Morgan Slutzky COPY CHIEF Andy Comer COPY EDITORS Ben Dickerson, Kasey Salisbury STAFFWRITER Jake Magee ADVERTISING SALES DIRECTOR Tess Coverman ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Teresa Votaw DESIGN CREATIVE DIRECTOR Derek Sullivan ART PRODUCTIONMANAGER Tessa Hoefle GRAPHIC DESIGNER Elyssa Turner STAFF DESIGNERS Chase Brooks, Justin Howell, Jay Jones BUSINESS GROUP PUBLISHER Traci Rodriguez CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER Claire Love ABOUT US John and Jennifer Garrett began Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 in Pflugerville, Texas. The company’s mission is to build communities of informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. CONTACT US

TO-DO LIST

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Local events and things to do TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES 11 Local road projects DRAINAGE UPDATES 14 A look at local drainage projects BUSINESS FEATURE 25 Beverly’s Touch of Class

Haley Morrison, EDITOR

THIS ISSUE BY THE NUMBERS

Local sources 28

New businesses 4

Community events 15

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Local camps

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2020CampGuide

GUIDE

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Local summer camps REAL ESTATE Residential market data IMPACT DEALS

© 2020 Community Impact Newspaper Co. All Rights Reserved. No reproduction of any portion of this issue is allowed without written permission from the publisher.

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

IMPACTS

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

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NOWOPEN 1 Lu’s Barber Shop opened its location at 1765 S. Friendswood Drive, Ste. 111, Friendswood, on Feb. 11. The business is a classic barber shop with grooming services for men and boys. The shop pro- vides haircuts, beard trims, treatments, hot lather shaves and men’s facials. The business has a 1960s setting with vintage barber chairs. www.lusbarbershop.com 2 Jersey Mike’s , a sandwich shop chain serving subs, opened its Pearland loca- tion at 2470 Pearland Parkway on Feb. 19. This location is the first of five new locations coming to the Houston area. 832-447-7827. www.jerseymikes.com 3 Babies Bakery opened Feb. 11 at 2206 E. Broadway St., Pearland. The business is a 3-D/4-D ultrasound

7 Sweet Paris Creperie and Cafe is opening a location in March at Baybrook Mall in Friendswood. The restaurant, which will face the lawn, serves crepes as well as waffles, soups, salads and sand- wiches. Crepes range from sweet to sa- vory, and flavors include Croque Madame, chicken enchilada and Nutella. This is the ninth location for the Houston-based chain. www.sweetparis.com RELOCATIONS 8 Luxie Plum moved to 802 S. Friend- swood Drive, Ste. 104, Friendswood, on Feb 7. The boutique, which sells wom- en’s clothing and accessories as well as gift items, used to be located at 633 S. Friendswood Drive, Friendswood. 281-612-2547. www.luxieplum.com

facility as well as a cake pop bakery and small boutique. The boutique portion of the Babies Bakery will carry Ivory Boutique items, jewelry, handmade car seat covers, bibs and more. www. facebook.com/babies-bakery-3d4d-ultra- sound-1659052584399790/ 4 Bellissimo Day Spa opened in Friend- swood in mid-February. Located at 119 W. Parkwood Ave., the spa offers a variety of services. Services are expected to include a relaxation area with a com- plimentary wine bar, massage therapy, sensory-deprivation tanks, facials, and a physician on-site for fillers and botox. There will also be a CBD store at the spa. 281-993-8156 COMING SOON 5 Szechuan Spice will open in late

March at 3422 Business Center Drive, Ste. 102, Pearland. The business is planning on serving Szechuan cuisine, a type of Chinese food categorized by its use of the Sichuan pepper, resulting in the food’s spiciness. 6 MyFit18 , a concept by the creators of Code Ninjas, is opening centers in Pearland this year. MyFit18 is a zero-staff fitness center with full facial recognition for clients. The clean, functional space will offer equipment for both beginner and advanced exercising. Membership will also be capped to avoid overcrowd- ing. The first three centers of the busi- ness are expected to open in Pearland. The business is expecting to be head- quartered in the Pearland Town Center at 11200 Broadway St. before opening more locations. www.myfit18.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

COMPILED BY HALEY MORRISON & MORGAN SLUTZKY

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Lu’s Barber Shop

Sweet Paris Creperie and Cafe

COURTESY LU’S BARBER SHOP

(COURTESY SHANNON O’HARA)

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HCA broke ground on a training center. (Courtesy HCA Healthcare)

FEATURED IMPACT COMING SOON On Feb. 26, HCA Houston Healthcare broke ground on an HCA Houston Healthcare Center for Clinical Advancement, a training center housing hospital simulation labs, connected classrooms and debriefing rooms. The new center will be located at the Pearland Town Center at 11200 Broadway St., Pearland. The new 48,400-square-foot site is scheduled to open in early 2021. The center will provide ongoing education for the HCA system’s 7,000 nurses. “The HCA Healthcare Center for Clinical Advancement is a significant part of our strategic nursing plan to support and grow our nurses as the differentiator at our hospitals and other facilities,” said Kelli Nations, the chief nurse executive for HCA Houston Healthcare, in a press release. “It certainly helps us raise the bar for nursing care in Houston.” Nurses may train for up to 22 weeks at the center, according to the press release. The center will also offer orientation for new employees. The new space will be able to hold up to 250 employees. The center is meant to standardize training in the area at hospitals,

outpatient surgery centers, emergency centers and imaging facilities, Nations said in the press release. “Bringing the latest teaching technologies under one roof in a new, advanced facility is a major step in preparing our nurses to provide the highest level of care,” Nations said. This is the first of two training centers planned for the Houston area. The second one is planned for North Houston. HCA Houston Healthcare has a hospital at 11100 Shadow Creek Parkway, Pearland. It has over 13 hospitals in Houston. 713-770-7000. www.hcahoustonhealthcare.com

Luxie Plum

LifePointe Church

COURTESY LUXIE PLUM

MORGAN SLUTZKY/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

ANNIVERSARIES 9 Jax Burgers Fries & Shakes opened its east Pearland location last year on March 15. Located at 3320 E. Broadway St., Ste. 128, the business serves burgers made from 100% Angus beef as well as fries and shakes. This is the third Pearland location for the Houston-area chain. 832-243-1844. www.jaxburgers.com EXPANSIONS 10 Pearland Veterinary Clinic is ex- panding to the suite next door in March. The clinic will add more exam rooms, a lab and a bigger lobby. The business is located at 2014 N. Main St., Pearland. 281-258-4276. https://veterinaryclinicof pearland.com/ 11 LifePointe Church , located at 3011 Yost Blvd., Pearland, is expecting to complete its expansion March 29. The church began the expansion last summer. 281-485-1952. https://lpfellowship.com

CLOSINGS 12 Don Pico’s closed its location at 9811 Broadway St., Pearland. The Tex-Mex restaurant still has its location at 2110 Bay Area Blvd., Houston. 281-280-8081 IN THE NEWS 13 Friendswood resident Kenneth Janis was appointed chief operating officer of Kelsey-Seybold . The news was announced Feb. 20. Janis has 25 years of experience in the field, according to a press release sent out by Kelsey-Seybold. There is a Kelsey-Seybold location in Pearland at 2515 Business Center Drive. 713-442-7200. www.kelsey-seybold.com 14 Chara Dance Academy , located at 101 Hunters Lane, Friendswood, earned a Youth Protection Advocates in Dance cer- tification in January, making it only one of two dance academies in the Greater Houston area to do so. Chara offers dance and music instruction. 832-569-4065. www.charadance.com

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

TO-DO LIST

March-April events

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MAR. 21

PAWS IN THE PARK INDEPENDENCE PARK

MAR. 22

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MARCH 20 PEACE FOR PEARLAND GOLF TOURNAMENT The seventh Peace for Pearland Golf Tournament will be held at the Pearland Golf Club. The event will include a silent auction, raffle and art show as well as the tournament. Participants can sign up as solo competitors or as part of a team. All proceeds will benefit the Peace for Pearland nonprofit. Noon-7 p.m. $135 (solo), $540 (team). 3123 Flower Field, Pearland. 713-436-5673. www.peaceforpearland.org/golf_ tournament 24 HOWTO READ THE NEWS Pearland Westside Library will hold a lecture by Ernie Williamson, a former executive editor at the Houston Post and former assistant managing editor at the Houston Chronicle, on how to read the news. Learn tips on how to identify fair or biased reporting and how to find accurate and responsible popular news sources. 6:30 p.m. Free. 2803 Business Center Drive, Ste. 101, Pearland. 713-436-0995. 26 MOUNTAIN BIKING BASICS CLASS REI mountain bike experts will hold a class for beginners looking to learn the basics. Topics covered will include what to look for when purchasing a bike, essential gear, basic maintenance and safety and responsibility on the trail. 6-7:30 p.m. Free. 18750 Gulf Freeway, Friendswood. www.rei.com/stores/ houston-baybrook 28 PURANAVA INDIAN CULTURE FEST Celebrate India’s vibrant culture at the Puravana Indian Culture Fest. There will be cultural performances with classic folk dances, music, kids activities and shopping. There will also be Indian food available. The day will end with a Universal Harmony Parade. 3-7 p.m. Free. 11200 Broadway St., Pearland. www.puravana-usa.org Bring the family to Paws in the Park for the Pet & Owner Fun Run, obstacle courses and pet adoptions. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Free. 3449 Pearland Parkway, Pearland. www.pearlandtx. gov (Courtesy city of Pearland)

28 SPRING FAIR&GARDENING EXTRAVAGANZA The Epiphany Lutheran Spring Fair & Gardening Extravaganza is an opportunity for shoppers to browse a home, gardening and handmade craft event curated by the Women of Epiphany. There will be a raffle, plant sale, barbecue lunch and bake sale at the event, and all proceeds will be donated. 9 a.m.– 4 p.m. Free. 5515 W. Broadway St., Pearland. www.facebook.com/ events/3202515986445008/ 28 SPRING EXTRAVAGANZA CRAFT&VENDOR SHOW Enjoy a family- and pet-friendly market at the Spring Extravaganza Craft and Vendor show. The event will include food trucks, a petting zoo and free Easter bunny pictures from 2-4:40 p.m. Alcohol will be available for purchase. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Free. 4202 W. Walnut St., Pearland. www.facebook.com/ events/2674755829418593/ 31 FOUNDATIONS OF INVESTING Learn about the foundations of investing with Mark Bailey of Edward Jones. He will discuss the importance of developing a strategy, asset allocation, the influence of inflation on long-term goals and how to put it all together. 6:30 p.m. Free. Pearland Westside Library, 2803 Business Center Drive, Ste. 101, Pearland. 713-436-0995. APRIL 04 NEWHOPE CHURCH SPRING MARKET The New Hope Church will hold a spring market in April that will benefit the Night to Shine event. Night to Shine is a special-needs prom sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation that the church holds every year. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. 108 W. Edgewood Drive, Friendswood. www.facebook.com/ events/485243628797730/ Tinkergarten will have a trial class, with activities made for teamwork. 4-4:50 p.m. Free. 3449 Pearland Parkway, Pearland. www. tinkergarten.com/classes/121299 (Courtesy Tinkergarten)

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

COMPILED BY MORGAN SLUTZKY

The Pearland Half Marathon will take place on March 22. (Courtesy Pearland Half Marathon)

EXERCISE OUTDOORS March 21: Turner High School Color Run The Turner High School National Honor Society and Health Occupations Students will host the second annual color run to raise money for scholarships and a suicide prevention task force at the school. The 5K is an untimed fun run for all ages and skill levels. Participants will pass through vibrant color zones along the route and end with a color celebration at the finish line. 8-10 a.m. $25. 4717 Bailey Road, Pearland. https://runsignup.com/Race/TX/ Pearland/2ndAnnualTHSColorRun March 22: Pearland HalfMarathon Join with runners from all over the Houston area and participate in the 2020 Pearland Half Marathon. All half-marathon and 10K runners will receive a participant shirt and finisher medal. Hydration stations will be stocked at about every mile. 5:30-11 a.m. $50 (10K), $80 (half-marathon). Independence Park, 3449 Pearland Parkway, Pearland.

course includes multiple task stations with clue cards and activities. There are two course options, with a more difficult course for adults and an easier one for children. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. $49.99-$84.99. Frankie Carter Randolph Park, 5150 E. Edgewood Drive, Friendswood. https://runsignup.com/Race/TX/ Friendswood/Houston2014GREAT AMAZINGRACE21514adultskids adventurerace April 4: Family Hometown FunRun The Family Hometown Fun Run is open to runners and walkers of all levels and consists of a family 1-mile and a 5K through downtown Friendswood. The family race will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the 5K will begin at 9 a.m. All proceeds from the race go to supporting missions and ministries around the world. 7:45 a.m. $5-$36. 502 S. Friendswood Drive, Friendswood. https://sites.google.com/view/ hometownfunrun April 5: Tour de Braz Bike Ride The 27th annual Tour de Braz Bike Ride will start at Alvin Community College and tour through the Brazoria County countryside before ending at Briscoe Park. The proceeds will benefit the Alvin Volunteer Fire Department. Riders of all experience levels are encouraged to participate and can choose between 10-, 34-, 50-, 65- and 100-mile routes. There will be a postride party with food and beverages. 8 a.m.-4 p.m. $40. 3110 Mustang Road, Alvin. www.tourdebraz.org

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r. Event organizers can submit local events online to be considered for the print edition.

2319 N. GRAND BLVD., PEARLAND, TX. 77581 www.hmps.net | 281-485-2500

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

COMPILED BY MORGAN SLUTZKY

ONGOING PROJECT

FUTURE PROJECTS

McHardRoad extension

Mykawa Road improvements The design phase of the Mykawa Road improvements are around 30% complete. Construction is set to begin August 2021 and last until 2023, with the total cost of the improvements at $40 million. The team working on this project is finalizing the alignment, working on the drainage study and finishing the general survey that will lead to land acquisition surveys, according to Pearland’s Director of Engineering and Capital Projects Robert Upton. The project will convert the two-lane road to a four-lane road and create a 10-foot-wide, shared-use path on the west side and a 6-foot-wide path on the east side. Timeline: August 2021-23 Cost: $40 million Funding source: city of Pearland, Tx-DOT, H-GAC

Friendswood Lakes Boulevard construction

SmithRanchRoad improvements The Smith Ranch Road project will widen the road from a two-lane asphalt road to a four-lane concrete road with curb and raised medians. The project is waiting for approval from TX-Dot to move into the land acquisition process. The construction for this project has been pushed back due to the land acquisition timeline and is now expected to begin mid-2021. The cost of the Smith Ranch Road widening and improvements will be $4.75 million and funded by the Houston-Galveston Area Council and the Texas Department of Transportation. This project will include improvements such as an underground storm sewer system. Timeline: 2021-2022 Cost: $4.75 million Funding sources: city of Pearland, Houston-Galveston Area Council, Tx-DOT

McHard Road will go to bid for con- struction mid-March. Construction is expected to in late summer or early fall of this year, though no set end date has been identified. The city is finalizing a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The permit is required because the project is receiving federal funds and will be on land not previously dedicated to public right of way. The project will cost over $33 million and be funded by Pearland and the Houston-Galveston Area Council’s Transportation Improvement Program. The new road will consist of a four- lane, concrete curb and gutter, divided roadway with raised medians and underground drainage.

The city of Friendswood and Galveston County are still at about the 95% mark regarding the design status for the Friendswood Lakes Boulevard con- struction project. This project will widen Friendswood Lakes Boulevard from two to four lanes before connecting to West Boulevard in League City. The scope of the project has been adjusted to include water and sewer utilities along the road as well as modifications to the area’s drainage. The total cost of Friendswood Lakes Boulevard is expected to be $5.5 mil- lion and will be funded by Friendswood developers and Galveston County. Any additional costs for the project will be funded by the city of Friendswood and developers. Timeline: TBD Cost: $5.5 million Funding sources: city of Friendswood, developers, Galveston County

Timeline: 2020-TBD Cost: $33.63 million

Funding: city of Pearland, H-GAC’s Transportation Improvement Program

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ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF 2/24/20. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT PLFNEWS@COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM.

Richard Lambert 832-243-4180 12234 Shadow Creek Pkwy

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATION

PARKAND RIDE RIDERSHIP Pearland’s park and ride was meant to be subsidized by funds from the riders, with a round trip ticket costing $13.50 or $16, depending on if it was bought online or in person. Due to low ridership, it will be coming to an end in April. Here is a look at those numbers.

Actual daily ridership average 20-25

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Minimum daily ridership needed

The park and ride program in Pearland will end on April 3. (Courtesy Coach USA)

SOURCE: CITY OF PEARLAND/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Pearland’s park and ride service to end this April The Pearland park and ride bus program will come to an end April 3. The program, which launched in July 2019, was not meeting ridership expectations, so the bus company decided to submit a notice of cancellation to the city, Deputy City Manager Jon Branson said. The park and ride service was intended to take Pearland residents in and out of the Texas Medical Center and downtown Houston. Branson said the buses were aver- aging between 20 and 25 riders per day, when a minimum of 50 riders on a daily basis was needed for Kerrville Bus Co./Coach USA to consider continuing the program. “They approached the city and said they wanted to provide a park and BY MORGAN SLUTZKY

but it has to be the right model for it to work,” Branson said. Branson said the city has previ- ously considered a park and ride service through the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, or METRO, but because of policy, it only offers park and ride programs to cities outside its service area with a subsidy from the city. “We’re still trying to build the city and build the infrastructure so to give up a portion of our revenue, we just couldn’t afford that,” Hernandez said. Hernandez said Pearland is often

ride service from Pearland to the Med Center,” Branson said. “The city is not paying any subsidy for the service, so the company is paying it through revenue from the program.” Pearland City Council Member Adrian Hernandez said feedback about the service indicates the pricing was not enough to incentivize people to use the buses. According to Coach USA’s website, a round trip is $13.50 online, $16 in cash, while a monthly pass is $250. “I don’t think the pricing was too far off, but the timing was not the

right price, we’re probably not going to be there for another 10 years,” Hernandez said. Hernandez said he believes people know a commuting service such as a park and ride will become a necessity, but people have not yet reconciled with the need to pay for it. In the future as more of Brazoria County develops, Hernandez said he would love to see regional partic- ipation in funding a park and ride program for the area. “We aren’t the only place with residents, so the more of us there are, the more feasible,” Hernandez said. Branson and Hernandez both agree with the park and ride service from Coach USA ending, there are not any other immediate options on the table, but the city will continue looking at different options. “I think it’s important that peo- ple know we are looking forward already,” Hernandez said. “A lot of what’s happening now is because of decisions that were made five or 10 years ago, so we are still thinking about the future and planning for the growth we’re on the precipice of.”

compared to cit- ies such as Sugar Land, which has its own park and ride through Fort Bend County Express, but said the difference is Pearland’s

best,” Hernandez said. “Construc- tion on [Hwy.] 288 was an issue because it created

“OBVIOUSLY THE SERVICE IS NEEDED, BUT IT HAS TOBE THE RIGHTMODEL FOR IT TOWORK.” JON BRANSON, DEPUTY CITY MANAGER

traffic, so the convenience wasn’t great for riders.” Branson said more Pearland

taxable value is lower, with much of it being tied up in neighborhoods not yet finished being built out. “For us to be in the position to provide the subsidies for a park and ride, with time, convenience, and the

residents work in the medical center than any other area in the Houston metro, according to information from Houston-Galveston Area Council. “Obviously the service is needed,

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

DRAINAGE UPDATES

Drainage projects underway in the community

COMPILED BY HALEY MORRISON

COMPLETED PROJECT Country PlaceDitch Work has been delayed on Country Place Ditch due to inclement weather, according to Brazoria County Drainage District 4. The project included drainage reclamation, outfall repairs and maintenance. The drainage right of way was cleared of structures, fences, plants and any other obstructions to right of way, according to the district’s website. Timeline: July 2019-April 2020 Cost: $1.09 million Funding source: Brazoria Country Drainage District 4

MudGully The concrete work on Mud Gully Channel is still on track to begin this spring. The project will be federally funded but overseen by the Harris County Flood Control District. The concrete in-line will be necessary, as the channel has been worn down over time due to erosion. An end date for construction has yet to be determined. Timeline: spring 2020-TBD Cost: $5 million Funding source: federal funds

HALEY MORRISON/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

The Galveston County Consolidated Drainage District is 25% done with work on Imperial Estates. The Imperial Estates project consists of digging out 33 acres of land along Clear Creek for detention. The drainage district did find it is able to get more drainage out of the acreage than originally expected, Operations Manager Joseph Anderson said. The project is funded by the Galveston County Consolidated Drainage District. Construction began in July 2019 and is expected to wrap up in mid-2021. The city of Friendswood is also working on a flood reductions benefit study that will help the city and drainage district understand the benefits of using the additional capacity for flood prevention. The city has started modeling for the flood reductions benefit study and hopes to present the findings to council in May, said Samantha Haritos, Deputy Director of Engineering for the city of Friendswood. The city has contributed funds to the Imperial Estates project. The use of bond money for the drainage project has also been discussed, although no formal decision has been made, city officials said. Local drainage district continues work on Imperial Estates project

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COUNTRY PLACE PKWY.

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FUTURE PROJECTS Westminister Ditch Brazoria County Drainage District 4 expects to complete design on Westminister Ditch in March. The project’s construction may be delayed as resources may have to be allocated to the federally funded Clear Creek project. The goal of the project is to shift the ditch within the drainage district’s right of way to provide maintenance access on both sides. Timeline: TBD Cost: $752,738 Funding source: Brazoria County Drainage District 4

Southbelt DetentionBasin andDagg Road The Southbelt Detention Basin and the Dagg Road detention basin are still on track to begin construction this spring. The projects have been packaged together and cost a combined $15.5 million. The Dagg Stormwater Detention Basin will store excess floodwater during times of heavy rain, according to the Harris County Flood Control District website. The detention basin is located north of Christia V. Adair Park. Timeline: spring 2020-early 2022 Cost: $15.5 million Funding source: HCFCD 2018 bond

CLEAR CREEK

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

DEVELOPMENT UPDATES

Developments underway in the community

Council approves permit for newmassage parlor at Pearland Town Center with proposal amendments

is a violation. “I like the fact that we’ve got a mechanism to enforce it,” Council Member Tony Carbone said. Council Member Luke Orlando asked how the city can enforce the conditions. Code enforcement would be able to go in and inspect the situation, John McDonald said. “I don’t want the government at a meeting like this to use snap judgments and tell a business they can’t operate, but I am concerned that we have that ability to enforce the conditions,” Orlando said. “The reason we put these in place is because of sex trafficking.” Orlando asked that the community development department do inspec- tions alongside code enforcement to ensure people are complying to the

conditions. The applicant has four other locations in the United States.

BY HALEY MORRISON

Owner Bingji Liu applied for a permit for a massage parlor in the Pearland Town Center on Feb. 17. The parlor, which would offer full body massages, would have three massage rooms, a waiting area and an open area for foot massages. The applicant has agreed to the city’s conditions for massage parlors, which includes that the doors remain unlocked during business hours and that windows are not blurred in. Business hours are from 8 a.m.-10 p.m. according to the permit. The owner also complied to a request to add that the storage room in the building be able to be unlocked from the inside to the permit language. The criteria also allows city staff to pull the conditional use permit if there

The staff does not have a report on the amount of massage parlors in the area but is working on putting that together. Council approved the permit unanimously, with the added amend- ment that the doors to the storage area remain unlocked at all times. The amendment passed unanimously.

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Council discusses farming supply store coming to commerce park

WHAT DOES TRACTOR SUPPLY COMPANY SELL? Tractor Supply Co. does not sell tractors. Instead, it sells items for the hobby farmer, including:

BY HALEY MORRISON

“The thing that concerns me a little bit of another one coming in like this in this particular area is that we had a couple of smaller locations up [Hwy.] 35 and one that was on [Hwy.] 35; I guess the business wasn’t that great, so they relocated to Alvin,” Council Member Woody Owens said. Owens was concerned Lowe’s would be in competition with the business. However, Lowe’s is home improvement-oriented, and Tractor Supply Co. is more farming-oriented, officials said. Council has not taken a vote to approve the development.

The Rice Drier Commerce Park development is coming together in the city of Pearland. At a Feb. 17 public hearing, City Council and the Planning and Zoning Commission heard a pitch for a farm storage supply store, Tractor Supply Co., to move into the park. The original plan for the Rice Drier Commerce Park, which was meant to have primarily commercial and light industrial usage, does not typically allow for this type of business. “Tractor supply is niche market for both the hobby farmer as well as homeowners,” officials said. The farm store would be an 18,000-square-foot tractor company supply store with a 17,500-square- foot outdoor storage space. The original proposal had the building facing the Pearland ISD administration building. The updated proposal has the building facing Hwy. 35 instead.

Clothing

Equine and pet supplies

Lawnmowers

Tractor parts

Sprinklers

Power tools

Fencing

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Welding supplies

SOURCE: TRACTOR SUPPLY CO./ COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

ENVIRONMENT Coastal Texas Study changes, no longer includes long floodwalls

BY JAKE MAGEE

over 13,000 public comments about the project last March, and the floodwalls and levees were “not well-received.” The organizations are proposing to build beaches that stretch 250 feet from the water to 14-foot-high manmade dunes. The beaches and dunes would stretch across Galveston Island and the Bolivar Peninsula and help prevent flooding during major storms, Burks-Copes said. While the dunes are more environ- mentally friendly and aesthetically pleasing than concrete walls, they will not be as effective at holding back water. However, the tradeoff is worth it considering the public approval of them, Burks-Copes said. The organizations proposed building small navigable gates and lift gates, which are cheaper and more resilient than the originally proposed large gates, she said.

The $23 billion-$32 billion plan to build 76 miles of floodwalls and levees along Galveston Island and Bolivar Peninsula to prevent flooding has undergone significant changes. The two biggest changes are that the Texas General Land Office and Army Corps of Engineers—the two organizations involved with the Coastal Texas Study, a plan to reinforce the Bay Area against hurricanes—are no longer proposing to build the floodwalls and levees or what would have been the world’s largest navigable gate between the island and peninsula. Both organizations shared an update on the study during an open house event in Seabrook on Feb. 13. Project manager Kelly Burks-Copes said the proposed floodwalls and levees have been replaced with beaches and dunes. Officials received

Residents discuss the Coastal Texas Study. (Jake Magee/Community Impact Newspaper)

NUMBER TOKNOW $23 -$32B

is how much officials expect it will cost to implement the Coastal Texas Study.

Finally, the organizations are proposing building a ring around part of Galveston Island of levees and floodwalls on the back side toward the bay as well as repairs to the existing seawall that faces the Gulf. In the event of a hurricane, not even the gates would stop water from entering the bay, but the protective ring would help reduce flooding, Burks-Copes said.

The dunes, gates and ring are three lines of defense that would make Galveston Island and the Bay Area more resilient to major storms, said Tony Williams, director of planning coastal resources for GLO. Officials estimate it will cost $100 million to $130 million annu- ally to operate and maintain the dunes, beaches, gates and other components.

Kevin Cole moved to Pearland in 1977 and began serving this great city in 1994 as a member of the Pearland Planning and Zoning Commission. He was elected to Pearland's City Council, servingfrom 1995-1998 and again from 2004-2010. A CHAMPION FOR PEARLAND Kevin seeks to diversify Pearland's tax base and take the strain off our homeowners. His PEAR plan describes the path for our next growth cycle and brings primary jobs to our City. Kevin was co-founder of the Greater 288 Partnership that has been instrumental in advocating for improved transportation in our area and culminating the major reconstruction of highway 288 scheduled to complete in mid-2020. As Kevin seeks your vote for Mayor of Pearland, his key focus for safe and reliable traffic flows remains critical to both our quality of life, smart city growth and prosperity. A SUCCESSFUL BUSINESSMAN As a Principal of CoveMatrix Development,Kevin offers his expertise in property development,providing ideas and support to area elected officials and consulting services.Over the past 20 years,Kevin has developed or consulted on the creation of 6500 residential lots in the Greater Houston Area,resulting in $1.7B in private capital investment A FAMILY MAN Kevin and his wife,Lisa,have raised four children in Pearland-all live in Pearland and are starting families of their own.They have 7 grandchildren and another on the way.Kevin and Lisa are activemembers of Crosspoint Church. KEVIN COLE'S PEAR PLANWILL TAKE PEARLAND WHERE WE NEED TO GO

P ROTECTION • Police • Fire • Property Values • Flood/Drainage • Blueridge Landfill

E CONOMIC DEVELOPMENT • Expanding and diversifying our tax base

A CCESSIBILITY (TRAFFIC AND MOBILITY) • Safe reliable traffic flow • Manage traffic flowmore efficiently (signal timing) • Improve travel time predictability • Address our needs for growth and mobility through HGAC funding • Update Thoroughfare Plan as a roadmap of the future

R ESOURCE MANAGEMENT • Tax rate is too high • Debt burden is too high • Need spending accountability on every line item (scrub the budget) • Manage the spending on the voter approved bond projects to minimize debt

• Attract clean industry • Retain and Expand our existing business • Workforce Development • Look at market approach to certain areas of the City • Foster small business

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16

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

GOVERNMENT Water bill discrepancies frustrate residents as city navigates issue

Tracking the

time gap

The city of Pearland is facing a problem with a lag in collecting water bill payments. Here is a timeline of what caused the issue as well as milestones over the course of the gap increasing.

BY HALEY MORRISON

somebody,” Pearland resident Denise Hewitt said. Other residents asked the city to provide them with the amount of money still outstanding so that they can pay it immediately, a solution some council members supported. Council discussed three different billing plans but did not vote on one specific plan and instead provided guidance to the city. At the Feb. 24 meeting, council leaned toward a plan that would allow citizens to pay the bill all at once or on a payment plan, if possi- ble. At this time, it is only possible to give residents their remaining balance if the city does it for all residents, Branson said. Council had also previously discussed a plan that would convert the 28-day reading cycle to a 32-day cycle. If passed, Branson said, this change would have the least impact on citizens and would be easy to exe- cute but would not allow residents to pay off the balance early. This plan would catch the city up financially by early 2022. Until the decision is made, coun- cil members have asked for more communication. It was not decided when council would make a decision as of press time. “I think we’ve failed until we have communicated exactly what has happened and how we’re going to get there to rectify it,” Council Member Tony Carbone said. “It took two years to get here, and we need to know how we are moving forward.”

July 2018 The 28-day water meter reading cycle begins.

The city of Pearland is discuss- ing solutions on how to resolve a discrepancy between the water meter readings and billing cycle. Residents were billed on a different timeline than when their water meters were read, which has caused a deficit of nearly $6 million in the city until the money is collected. City Council discussed different ways to correct the issue at the Feb. 17 and Feb. 24 council meetings. “We want to cover in full transpar- ency what we know and what we’ve learned and what we plan to do,” City Manager Clay Pearson said. The city began 28-day meter read- ing in July 2018. This system results in 13 cycles in a year. However, as the city had only sent out one bill a month the city is roughly 60 days behind on billing citizens for meter usage. In an attempt to begin resolving the situation, roughly 25% of custom- ers received two billing statements from the city in February. For some residents, the second bill stated their balance was past due, though the res- idents had never missed a payment. “It was very confusing to people who received it, and it shouldn’t have occurred. It did,” Deputy City Manager Jon Branson said. Some residents showed up at the meetings to speak about the incorrect language in the bill as well as their confusion with the situation. “I am not quite sure I under- stand how you inadvertently bill

The amount of money the city of Pearland needs to collect from water bills $6 million

"We want to cover in full transparency what we know and what we've learned and what we plan to do." CLAY PEARSON, PEARLAND CITY MANAGER

May 2019 The first time a lag of more than 30 days before bill reading and water usage appears

December 2019 First time city officials said they are made aware of the issue

January 2020 The first time a lag of more than 60 days before bill reading and water usage appears

February 2020 The first meeting to address the issue

SOURCE: CITY OF PEARLAND/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

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PEARLAND - FRIENDSWOOD EDITION • MARCH 2020

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