Mayor Harry LaRosiliere highlights Plano's challenges, broader 'renaissance' in State of the City address

Legacy West, home to a number of retail stores, offices, restaurants and residential communities, plans to open in June.

Legacy West, home to a number of retail stores, offices, restaurants and residential communities, plans to open in June.

Amid what Harry LaRosiliere called an “unprecedented renaissance” in Plano, the city's mayor told residents Tuesday that city leaders would work to solve the city’s biggest challenges with the same vision that helped transform cattle fields into a burgeoning set of developments in the Legacy corridor.

The mayor made his comments at the final State of the City address of his term as developers prepare to open later this year a wide-ranging series of corporate headquarters, stores, restaurants and residential communities along the southwest corner of SH 121 and the Dallas North Tollway.

Projects in the sprawling corridor include the Legacy West mixed-use development, a new headquarters facility for Toyota Motor North America and corporate offices for Liberty Mutual Insurance and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Harry LaRosiliere Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere[/caption]

“All this growth in our business sector will help us continue to provide our citizens with the amenities and activities that will increase and enhance the quality of our lives,” LaRosiliere said in the final State of the City address of his term. “But it’s really not only about [the] new. It’s about redevelopment as well.”

Plano’s Collin Creek Mall may be a candidate for redevelopment, particularly after recent news it would lose one of its major department stores when Macy’s Inc. announced plans earlier this month to shutter its location there before the end of the year.

Laying out broad ambitions for the struggling shopping center, LaRosiliere said city leaders could play a role in envisioning a new path forward for the area.

“I can see us opening that creek—tearing off that concrete and having that beautiful creek come out of there,” he said. “I can see buildings being built where there’s a bustle of economic activity—just like we see in Legacy West.”

The mayor also said the city is looking for creative ways to address Plano’s crowded roadways, asking corporate partners to reorder their business hours in an effort to stagger commute times.

Although the city budget calls for tens of millions of dollars in mobility improvements throughout Plano’s roadways, LaRosiliere said substantial improvement would also require buy-in from residents. Traffic congestion could be relieved somewhat, he said, if more residents are willing to look into public transit options and other options to get to work that do not involve single-occupant vehicles.