Sunday, August 14, 2022

A corner is a terrible thing to waste

History of the Cross Timbers CTCDD

The Cross Timbers Conservation Development District (CTCDD) was manufactured in the years 1999 and 2000 and adopted in the Master Plan 2001. The Minutes of the Council Meetings around this time say little about why the lines were drawn where they were, or who drew the lines of this district. Most of the property owners lassoed into this district had no idea they were put in it.

In January of 1999, The Town of Flower Mound enacted a Residential Building Moratorium to stop residential growth. This moratorium stayed in place for about a year (about as long as it legally could) while new ordinances were written to slow future growth.

While much of the land in this district needs special treatment, some of it has little to no significance to the Cross Timbers. It is clear that Town officials at this time included all the contiguous land possible; land that was not already developed or entitled for development. The purpose of including many of the Eastern properties was clear, to slow (if not stop) growth in Flower Mound.

The land in Bunn Gourely East, the properties requesting a Master Plan Amendment, is in an Eastern ‘bump out’ of the CTCDD. It has no real significance to Cross Timbers or the CTCDD. This land was heavily cultivated and grazing in the 1900’s and had fewer trees then, than it does now. The corner of Cross Timbers and Flower Mound Road (where retail is proposed) had a Turkey Farm with Turkey Houses through the 1960’s and into the 1970’s. Hundreds of thousands of Turkeys were raised on this property every year. Cattle and hay meadows have been the use of this property since.

Moving the Boundary of the CTCDD

Now that Flower Mound Road is constructed and in place, it makes perfect sense to move the line of the CTCDD West to Flower Mound Road. This realignment eliminates the Eastern bump of the CTCDD and cleans up a patchwork quilt of uses in this Eastern segment. Presently, there is a Church, school, homes, and a gas well site in this collection of properties. Moving this line to Flower Mound Road aligns the density of Bridlewood to the North, through this property, and through Wellington to the South.

With this realignment, the CTCDD becomes more logical and meaningful. In general, properties to the East of this line will be dense and properties to West of this line will be preserved as less dense.

What about the Proposed Retail?

Approximately 19 acres exists on the southeast corner of Cross Timbers and Flower Mound Road, which is part of the Bunn Gourely East tracts. This is a very special corner for Flower Mound, essentially where FM 3040 crosses FM 1171 (Flower Mound Road is the extension of FM 3040). There are 25,000+/- cars per day through this intersection currently. FM 1171 is completing as a six lane divided highway that will carry 50,000 cars plus per day and Flower Mound Road has been completed as a four lane divided arterial.

Traffic is increasing rapidly through this intersection and will continue to grow as FM 1171 completes. Communities in Flower Mound and to the North & West of Flower Mound will drive traffic by this site in ever increasing numbers. This is inevitable with Grapevine Lake creating a natural barrier, funneling traffic through this intersection. Flower Mound Road is a natural shortcut to FM 3040, FM 2499, and other destinations.

The demographics of the trade area around this corner currently are the best in Flower Mound and among the best in the Nation, with $200,000 average household income. This corner will draw upscale dining and retail shops that would not otherwise locate in Flower Mound. Riverwalk has an average household income of $120,000 and Parker Square is at $111,000.

ParkWest Village is the proposed center at this location and is designed by the renowned international architectural firm Gensler. The conceptual design includes the clustering of buildings with view corridors, major stands of existing trees, water features, and spacious areas of landscapes and hardscapes. The village concept is designed to be a ‘place’ for Western Flower Mound to gather and socialize, and a place that will attract tax dollars from communities outside of Flower Mound (lowering the tax burden on Flower Mound residents).

A corner is a terrible thing to waste. Especially what can be arguably termed as one of our best corners in Flower Mound, with demographics and road infrastructure considered. Most tragic, is to waste this corner for more houses. This makes about as much sense as building homes at the corner of FM 1171 & FM 2499. Thank goodness, our previous Councils did not make this mistake.

Let’s do something special and creative for this special corner. ParkWest Village is a great proposal and we have many opportunities to sculpt and shape this proposal through the many Town processes or platting, zoning and site planning ahead. Let’s have the wisdom and courage to do what is right for Flower Mound.

Mark Glover
Flower Mound, TX

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