A new hiking trail, repaving projects: 4 takeways from last night's Bee Cave council meeting

City staff are convening a selection committee to replace retiring Bee Cave Presiding Municipal Court Judge David L. Garza.

City staff are convening a selection committee to replace retiring Bee Cave Presiding Municipal Court Judge David L. Garza.

Updates to exclude The Uplands from the city road management plan, Story 2. -RM

Here are four takeaways from Tuesday night’s Bee Cave City Council meeting.

1. Bee Cave’s Hike and Bike Connectivity Plan to break ground

With the exception of a lone holdout as of the May 8 council meeting, the city of Bee Cave has secured needed pedestrian easements in order to begin construction this month of a three-quarter-mile trail from Falconhead Boulevard to Bee Cave Central Park roughly paralleling RM 620.

Relocke LLC in the vicinity of the commercial plaza on the west side of RM 620 north of Ladera Blvd. is the remaining outstanding property owner among seven in total the city approached. A half dozen entities are willing to give up their easement sections at no cost to the city, according to the agenda packet record. Should Relocke not give the easement, city staff said there will be break in the trail. The city made its most recent offer to Relocke on April 26.

City Planning and Development Director Lindsey Oskui said the property owner expressed a desire for the trail go through a vegetated area farther from their commercial plaza. But the owner also told staff the trail might attract vagrants, and it might be a safety issue.

The city has received no police reports about vagrants in the area, Oskui told the meeting in response to a citizen’s question.

Based on site conditions, the trial will be 10 feet wide and constructed from concrete and stabilized crushed granite, which is similar to asphalt, the project's manager told the meeting. The trail will be field-engineered, and a priority will be to avoid removing trees, according to city records.

City staff said they do not have a timeframe on the trail’s completion but advised the work begin right away and that it does not have to be built sequentially. Mayor-elect Monty Parker told Community Impact Newspaper he hoped to see the trail complete by the end of summer.

The cost of the low-bid project is $551,682 and will be taken from general funds

2. Bee Cave’s 2018 street improvement project includes more than 22 projects

Six years after the city of Bee Cave last completed a road work program on its 22-mile street network, council approved spending $76,100 to pay a consultant to provide updated reports into road conditions, a maintenance plan and cost estimate for repair work.

The maintenance plan includes a prioritized list of 22 streets with three alternates if costs come in lower than expected and the type of repairs for each street, city records show.

Neighborhoods included in the plan are Ladera, Falconhead, The Homestead and Bee Cave West.

3. Sites to be studied for Bee Cave’s future police and court facility

The first major step toward a possible new police and municipal court facility moved through Bee Cave City Council on May 8 with the approval of hiring a contractor to conduct a site and needs assessment.

Staff from Austin architectural firm Brinkley, Sargent and Wiginton—the same group behind Lakeway’s police facility now under construction—will conduct an inventory of Bee Cave’s current police department and court including a thorough review of the physical condition of the facility. The review will also project city needs 10 and 20 years out.

The allocated budget for the 15-week study is $51,500 to $58,100.

“There is some [cost] leeway if we determine the current site [located at 13333 W. Hwy 71 near the Shops at the Galleria] is not workable and we would not have to spend the money getting remodeling estimates,” Chief Gary Miller told council.

The site options are the current police facility, the Skaggs tract west of Hill Country Indoor sports complex on Bee Cave Parkway and the Staats tract near Hill Country Galleria, 12308 Galleria Blvd.

Miller told council he would prefer separated entities for security reasons as opposed to a merged facility site.

Bee Cave police has 7,800 square feet today for its 19 officers in the old village council building with no holding cells or dispatch center, council heard.

4. Council Members volunteer to help choose a new Municipal Court judge

Council Member Kara King and Mayor-elect Monty Parker will sit on a selection committee to interview candidates to replace Bee Cave’s retiring municipal court judge.

Bee Cave Presiding Judge of the Municipal Court David L. Garza will resign at the end of June after eight years on the bench.

“I shall take with me many wonderful memories of the fine professionals with whom I have worked during my tenure here,” Garza wrote in a March 20 letter to City Manager Travis Askey. “We have a good team in place, and the court is well-positioned for the future.”

In the interim associate judges Belinda Herrera and Mark Goodner are handling court-related duties, and both have expressed interest in Garza’s job, City Manager Travis Askey told council.

The selection committee is expected to begin its work within the next month, Askey said.