Growth and the issues that come with it continue to be a theme in the Clear Lake and Friendswood areas.
As population grows, so does demand for improved and expanded infrastructure. Consider the Texas Department of Transportation’s ongoing efforts to widen Interstate 45.
The construction, as correspondent Connor Behrens reports, could have an immediate adverse effect on local businesses, but ultimately could attract more retail and commercial development, observers say.
Galveston County, which covers parts of Friendswood and includes Clear Lake Shores and Kemah, is weighing its first bond and already area cities are making lists in hopes of getting help to finance some much-needed projects. It would be the first county bond issue since voters approved a $145 million debt plan in 2008.
All municipalities within Galveston County have been asked to submit infrastructure projects for possible funding.
The Kemah City Council and Mayor Carl Joiner compiled a list that includes four road projects and a stormwater drainage plan for the city’s west side, as correspondent Tom Bassing reports. In total, the projects will cost about $4 million. The city has budgeted for some of the projects, but hopes to use some proceeds from the county bond.
Finally, cities are grappling with the universal issue of an aging population. The world’s older population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate. Today, 8.5 percent of people worldwide — 617 million — are age 65 or older.
It’s relevant because developers want to build The Pond on 4.6 acres at 401 W. Edgewood Drive in Friendswood. Residents of The Pond would be age 55 or older. But there are issues. Senior residential facilities are heavy users of Friendswood’s free ambulance and emergency medical services and are meeting some resistance. Read about that story and much more in this issue.