Speaking Nov. 4 during the 2021 State of the City event, McKinney Mayor George Fuller announced the city is finalizing discussions to extend the AT&T Byron Nelson golf tournament’s stay in McKinney to 2030.

“[The tournament] didn't just showcase Craig Ranch and the TPC course, which is a wonderful asset to our community, but ... if you watched the tournament, you saw our historic downtown and other areas and aspects of our community. So it really it shows a spotlight on McKinney on an international level,” Fuller said during the event.

AT&T Byron Nelson officials had initially made a five-year agreement to have the tournament at the TPC Craig Ranch golf course in McKinney. McKinney hosted the tournament for the first time this past May. Even though attendance was capped at 10,000 people per day due to COVID-19, the event was still able to raise millions of dollars for the Momentous Institute, an organization that works to build and repair social and emotional health with children, as well as bringing in more than 15 million viewers, the mayor said.

The tournament brought in about $50 million in economic impact to the city as well as generating interest with corporations that were introduced to McKinney through the tournament, Fuller said.

Looking to the future

In addition to Fuller's announcement, McKinney officials were asked during the State of the City about other ongoing initiatives and projects in McKinney.

In a video before the panel discussion, the city of McKinney emphasized its focus on health this year with its COVID-19 vaccination hub, the opening of the new Family Health Center on Virginia, and improvements to the city’s parks and trails.

The video also pointed to ongoing efforts to redevelop the east side of the city with a new city hall and the relocation of Tupps Brewery. Significant strides were made with economic development as well with expansions to Raytheon and Independent Financial announced; H-E-B’s new McKinney location; and entertainment district developments, such as District 121 and The Hub.

“There’s lots of great things going on here in the city,” Fuller said.

On the education side, McKinney ISD Superintendent Rick McDaniel discussed the district’s decision to return to learning in person this year. While learning loss at the district did take place in some areas such as math, for the most part MISD outperformed not only the region but also the state, McDaniel said. He said having in-person classes this school year will strengthen the district’s learning achievements.

“That is not to say that some students did not perform well virtually, but we all know because we were all [students] at one time that being in person with a teacher who challenges you face to face is absolutely the best way to go,” McDaniel said.

He touched on the progress of the $245 million bond election the district had during the spring and the support the community offered the district. The school district is about half built out, and an elementary school is needed in the north part of the district to address the growth happening in the Trinity Falls area, McDaniel said. However, growth is also taking place north of US 380 and the Erwin Farms subdivision and with the new Painted Tree residential project.

“It's just a matter of time before all of that area fills in, so we'll have another elementary school not only in Trinity Falls, also just north of [US] 380 in that Painted Tree area,” McDaniel said. “So lots of growth coming our way, and we're prepared for it.”

Other highlights involved the growth of Collin College’s presence in the community, as it opened new campuses in Farmersville and Celina and an IT center in Frisco. The college is also readying to offer a third bachelor’s degree in construction management.

Enrollment at the college’s campuses dipped slightly this year, Collin College District President Neil Matkin said. However, the college is seeing growth in its online campus called iCollin.

“It's grown at a rate that exceeded anything we had planned for, so we've had to adjust along the way,” Matkin said. “And I think that as time goes on, we're going to continue to see a broader mix of in-person, face to face as well as hybrid classes ... as well as our online offerings. But the main thing is to make sure that students have a pathway to achieve their goals.”