Robson Ranch remains virtually free of COVID-19 spread. Residents and staff are working together and following government protocols. All of our facilities are open, though we have been ultra conservative on social distancing and mask requirements. Most times educated common sense rules the day.
We have been extremely successful in establishing curbside pickup of food from the Grill, as well as sales and curbside pickup of basic essentials (fresh food, soft goods and basic personal care products.) We even have curbside pickup and delivery for the Library.
Sales of homes, both resales and new sales are robust, setting new records. Infrastructure development for about 300 new lots is ahead of schedule. Robson Ranch has 2,368 homes occupied.
Our Food and Beverage operation has hired a new Executive Chef, Patrick McElroy, with oversight of all food preparation for both our banquet and Grill operations. He was the former Executive Chef of the Warwick Melrose hotel in Dallas. Patrick has had a lifelong career immersed in the culinary scene to perfect his craft. He has worked with some of the most prestigious chefs in and around the Philadelphia area. Merging his expert knowledge of global preparation and presentation with locally inspired offerings has led to a passionate, honest approach to what Texan cuisine is and can be.
We are open to the public. We invite all of our neighbors to either come back to the Grill or check us out for the first time and say hello to Patrick. You might want to ask him about his endangered Grevy’s Zebras from Kenya that he keeps on his ranch in Tioga, Texas.
We wish all of the readers of The Cross Timbers Gazette, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May God Bless the United States of America.
“May the road rise up to meet you…”
By Jesse Davis, Denton City Councilman
So begins that lovely and well-known Irish blessing. But for too long in the City of Denton, the road might have literally risen up to meet you, or disappeared from underneath you, or rattled your teeth so hard you thought they might fall out.
If you’ve been here very long at all, you remember when Eagle Drive looked like a battlefield and the only road crews you saw seemed to be filling the same potholes year after year. In 2009, our average “Overall Condition Index” (OCI) was an embarrassing 63 out of 100. As recently as 2018, fully 25% of our city maintained roads had failed and need to be rebuilt.
The culprit was years of deferred maintenance. But as our local economy has boomed, we gained the funds to do what I call “banking our growth.” In short, this means using our higher revenues and excellent bond ratings to invest in infrastructure we’ll use for decades. On the City Council I’ve pushed to put as many resources as we can spare into road improvements.
Of course this means that we’ve traded potholes for orange cones. As annoying as construction can be, the people of Denton consistently say that they prefer action over slow decay. In 2019, voters approved $154 million in new bonds for road projects. We’ve also stepped up the pace on projects approved in the 2012 and 2014 bond elections.
We are making solid progress. Hundreds of miles of roads have been rebuilt or resurfaced all across the city. Our average OCI has improved. Eagle Drive is complete, and Oak Streets is smooth as glass from I-35 through downtown. The Bonnie Brae Street widening is fully underway, and will eventually be four divided lanes all the way from Loop 288 down to US 377. Even the most infamous section of Hickory Street is finally under construction.
Unfortunately, some of our busiest thoroughfares are TxDOT’s responsibility. But even those are looking better. Construction on Teasley Drive has recommenced after resolving contractor issues. North Elm and Locust have brand new surfaces. South Elm and Locust will get the same once we finish drainage and utility projects. On the upside, once TxDOT rebuilds these roads, Elm, Locust, and Dallas Drive will become City of Denton property. That means we’ll have more control over changes and maintenance schedules going forward
We know there is much more work to do to bring Denton’s roads up to the standard we really need. And we have real traffic flow and safety concerns to address. For example, we are working with TxDOT to plan improvements at the intersection of I-35 and University Drive—a quagmire best avoided almost any time of day. However, please rest assured that city management and I are committed to continued improvement.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me on these issues and any others before the Denton City Council. You can reach me by email at [email protected]. I look forward to hearing from you, and I’ll see you around town!