Mayor delivers second State of Lakeway address of 2019

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Mayor Sandy Cox delivered her second State of Lakeway address of 2019 — the third of her term — and covered topics from trail connectivity to hotel occupancy tax usage.

The hour-long breakdown of the status of Lakeway took place at City Hall April 25.

Cox began the discussion with the hotel occupancy tax and how Lakeway officials are developing plans to better allocate money now in those coffers.

“Really, a hotel tax can be a great economic engine for the community,” Cox said, adding it is important to take stock of what the city is and use HOT money in context with that in mind.

Cox also talked about the many construction projects underway in Lakeway and how city leaders are interacting with developers, especially pertaining to the ongoing Square on Lohmans multiuse development project.

“We want to make sure we get the feedback and understand what the community wants [with regard to development],” she said.

Lakeway’s comprehensive plan, a massive undertaking last completed in 2003, was another key topic.

“Back then [in 2003]the median age was 67,” Cox said, alluding to the fact the city’s demographics are rapidly changing, making the need for an updated comprehensive plan that much more pressing. “Now, it’s 43.”

During Cox’s term as mayor that began in May 2018, officials have placed much import on ramping up Lakeway’s various committees, including those pertaining to parks, the steering the comprehensive plan and communications.

Cox welcomed two of the city’s committee chairs during the State of Lakeway address — Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee Chair Larry Harlin and Parks & Recreation Committee Chair Erwin Boettcher, to give updates on the status of their various projects.

Among other topics, Boettcher discussed the 25th anniversary of Lakeway’s City Park currently being celebrated through the month of April.

Connectivity remains a staple topic of Cox’s quarterly addresses, and Thursday evening she focused on shared-use trails behind the city’s businesses, as well as potentially connecting Lakeway to the city of Bee Cave.

“I don’t know how many bikers are going to take that trail all the way down to the Hill Country Galleria, but they’ll have a much safer path down [RM] 620,” Cox said.

Traffic remains an issue Cox and city officials are staying on top of, the mayor said, adding one of the major projects just completed in Lakeway is a restriping of Flint Rock Drive at its intersection with RM 620.

“So, we’re still looking at a lot of those things where safety is involved,” she said.

The completion of Main Street to the Stratus property behind the H-E-B in Lakeway is another project city leaders are working on with developers, Cox said.

The mayor closed with the $23.5 million topic followed closely by many residents—the brand new Lakeway Police Department Building that began construction in January 2018 and this week on April 23 saw the entire police staff move in.

“I’m happy to report the police building is finished,” she said.

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Brian Rash
Brian has been a reporter and editor since 2012. He wrote about the music scene in Dallas-Fort Worth before becoming managing editor for the Graham Leader in Graham, Texas, in 2013. He relocated to Austin, Texas, in 2015 to work for Gatehouse Media's large design hub. He became the editor for the Lake Travis-Westlake publication of Community Impact in August 2018.
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