Controversial Palomino bridge project remains in League City’s mobility plan

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League City City Council on Nov. 13 reaffirmed its earlier decision to approve the master mobility plan, which includes a controversial road project many residents have spoken against.

In late October the council approved the first reading of the plan with a 5-3 vote. The council voted 5-3 again Nov. 13 to approve the final reading.

Several residents spoke at both meetings in favor of removing the Palomino Lane extension project from the plan.

Palomino Lane runs from FM 518 north to where it ends at Clear Creek and Clear Springs High School. The project—which might not be built for decades, if ever—would extend the road north over the creek to connect to FM 528.

Dozens of concerned neighbors said the project would increase traffic, cause flooding, decrease property values and create other problems. The project could cost more than $20 million, which residents said is fiscally irresponsible to taxpayers.

Despite neighbors’ arguments, most of the council thought removing the project from the plan could have ramifications years down the road if a future council decided extending Palomino was the best way to address city traffic congestion concerns.

Council Member Nick Long, who spoke in favor of scratching the project, said keeping the project in the plan will adversely affect residents’ property values immediately and give the city no immediate benefit.

A few council members said it was unfair to neighbors to keep this project in the plan and hang it over their heads when it might never come to fruition.

“These folks are hanging on bated breath to try to get some relief in a community that was flooded,” Mayor Pat Hallisey said.

Hallisey, Long and Council Member Keith Gross voted to remove the project from the plan.

IN OTHER BUSINESS

Council on Nov. 13 also approved rezoning property at 386 S. Egret Bay Blvd. to allow for the development of a gym and coaching facility.

The 6.24-acre parcel was rezoned from residential single-family to general commercial so a developer can build a 20,000-square-foot gym that will eventually be expanded to 60,000 square feet.

The property was originally zoned general commercial in August 1999 and rezoned to residential in August 2005.

The council on Nov. 13 also approved a $5.28 million contract to reconstruct Dickinson Avenue from West Walker Street to FM 646 to better accommodate drainage. When complete the 2-mile stretch will be a two-lane concrete street with curb and gutter.

The total project is expected to cost about $7 million, and Galveston County will eventually fund $6 million of the work, city officials have said.

The work is expected to start in January and be done by early 2020.

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  1. I find it interesting that back in the early 1900’s there was a ferry crossing at the end of Palomino lane and now some want a bridge. It would be a horrible place for a bridge crossing just because of the amount of traffic on Palomino during the school year.

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Jake Magee
Jake Magee has been a print journalist for a few years, covering topics such as city government, education, business and more. Starting off at a daily newspaper in southern Wisconsin, Magee covered two small cities before being promoted to covering city government in the heart of newspaper's coverage area. He moved to Houston in mid-2018 to be an editor with Community Impact. In his free time, Magee enjoys playing video games, jamming on the drums and bass, longboarding and petting his cat.
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