Fort Bend County is moving forward on home buyouts from the 2016 Tax Day floods and the upcoming Texas Heritage Parkway.

The Commissioners Court approved acquiring nine properties affected by the 2016 Tax Day floods under a volunteer buyout program for a total of $1.2 million at the June 24 meeting. This effort is funded through a Federal Emergency Management Agency grant with a 25% to 75% state-county match.

Once the agreements have been signed, checks will need to be approved, according to county documents.

Additionally, the court accepted approximately 35 acres of donated land from GM Equity Group LLC, an affiliate of Ginter Family Investments LTD, according to county documents and the state comptroller. Dr. Glen Ginter is a pediatric dentist in the Katy area.

Of the donated property:

  • 17.3 acres will be used for the Texas Heritage Parkway, a new 6.4-mile, 200-foot-wide thoroughfare between I-10 and FM 1093 in the Fulshear area;

  • 11 to 13 acres will be used for wet detention; and

  • 5 acres will be used for a new library.

“[The Ginters have given] a very generous donation of ... very valuable land, and I very much appreciate their generosity to the people of Fort Bend County,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Andy Meyers said at the June 24 meeting.

The property donation comes from GM Equity Group’s 121.1-acre tract with a 2019 assessed value of $14,530 and a 2019 market value of $3.9 million, according to public documents and the Fort Bend County Appraisal District.

Construction on the $48.9 million Texas Heritage Parkway is expected to start this fall, Meyers said in an interview. The mobility project will provide another north-south thoroughfare to connect the Westpark Tollway to I-10, and the project is funded by Fort Bend County, the cities of Fulshear and Katy as well as private developers.

Meanwhile, construction on the new library is expected to coincide with Texas Heritage Parkway, Meyers said in December. At 30,000 to 40,000 square feet, the new $14 million facility was funded through a previous bond issue, he said. Past bonds that included funds for library expansions were approved by voters in 2013 and 2015.