Oak Ridge North moves forward on pool reopening, request for fiber internet proposals

The Oak Ridge North City Council met for a specially called meeting May 21. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Oak Ridge North City Council met for a specially called meeting May 21. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Oak Ridge North City Council met for a specially called meeting May 21. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)

Oak Ridge North’s public pool is set to reopen for the summer season in early June, after the City Council discussed final details of the pool’s operations at a specially called meeting May 21.

City Manager Heather Neeley said the pool facility’s capacity limit, as determined by Public Works Director Joe Sherwin, is currently set at 21 swimmers and 75 people on the pool deck at any given time. That limit could change throughout the year based on any new guidelines from Gov. Greg Abbott or other public health officials regarding public gatherings and pool facilities.

“In two weekends, things could be at a completely different place as far as the governor’s orders, as far as cases in Montgomery County. And any number of things could change that to where it’s either a no-brainer that you open up all the way, or something happens and it needs to be shut down,” Neeley said.

Officials had initially considered implementing a reservation system for pool access this year but decided to manage capacity through on-site counts by staff members. The pool’s weekend-only operation could be expanded throughout the year based on popularity and capacity limits as the season progresses as well.

“Initially, I think you’re going to probably have a lot of people show up. But I think as things begin to open up, people are going to start to move,” Mayor Paul Bond said. “Things are going to change, and we’ll just have to evaluate.”


The city will offer discount pool passes May 22 for both residents and nonresidents ahead of the pool’s opening during the first weekend in June. Discount passes will also be available for residents only during that first weekend of operation to begin the season.

Council also approved publishing a request for proposal, or RFP, for a possible new fiber-optic internet service throughout the city May 21, weeks after a representative of FastFiber had presented information on that service to council members. Officials said the RFP is based on a similar request Shenandoah had used when considering a new fiber internet service within its city limits in order to maintain control over the infrastructure needed for fiber service.

“They wanted to own the conduits that the fiber went through and have some control over future providers should the current provider go under for some reason,” Council Member Alex Jones said. “You have some control over pricing and who takes over the lines, et cetera, et cetera, so that you don’t have it going to whoever the highest bidder is and then suddenly every resident ... is hit with a, ‘Well, if you want to keep your service, the bill’s just gone up double.’”

The RFP was approved in a 5-0 vote and will remain open until June 11.
By Ben Thompson
Ben joined Community Impact Newspaper in January 2019 and is a reporter for The Woodlands edition.


MOST RECENT

As of June 4, 14 COVID-19 deaths have been confirmed and 56 residents and staff are being monitored at the center. (Community Impact staff)
Harris County coronavirus count: Outbreak reported at Humble rehab facility

As of June 4, 14 COVID-19 deaths have been confirmed and 56 residents and staff are being monitored at the center.

A woman in her 60s from Spring died while in the hospital. (Community Impact staff)
Montgomery County reports 27th coronavirus-related death; active cases down by 8

A woman in her 60s from Spring died while in the hospital.

CMS also unveiled an interactive map that lets users search any nursing home in the U.S. to see its COVID-19 cases. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
CMS reports 321 coronavirus deaths in Texas nursing homes, nearly 32,000 nationwide

CMS also unveiled an interactive map that lets users search any nursing home in the U.S. to its COVID-19 cases.

The Transportation and Global Logistics Technology Center opened June 1, with a grand opening ceremony held via video conference on June 4. (Courtesy Lone Star College System)
Lone Star College System announces Transportation and Global Logistics Technology Center opening

The Lone Star College Transportation and Global Logistics Technology Center officially opened June 1.

As rainfall let up, protesters circled back and forth across the Lake Woodlands Drive bridge. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Organized protests take place throughout The Woodlands to honor George Floyd

Organized protestors came out to show their support of the Black Lives Matter movement June 3 and 4.

While the Texas Supreme Court's 15th Emergency Order issued May 14 allowed residential eviction proceedings to resume statewide beginning May 19 following a two-month hiatus, the order does not require those proceedings to resume. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Hidalgo, Turner request eviction moratorium be extended through Aug. 24

In hopes of avoiding a new wave of homelessness plaguing Harris County, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo have requested all justices of the peace countywide to postpone eviction hearings until late August.

Martha Salazar-Zamora has served as superintendent since 2017, previously serving as chief academic officer for the district since 2014. (Courtesy Tomball ISD)
Tomball ISD's Martha Salazar-Zamora nominated as superintendent of the year

She has served as superintendent since 2017, previously serving as chief academic officer for the district since 2014, Community Impact Newspaper previously reported.

Few students and attendees wore face masks during the ceremony June 4, though students were seated in a socially distanced arrangement. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
PHOTOS: Conroe ISD celebrates graduates in socially distanced ceremonies

"This pandemic and everything else going on has taught us that above all, we need each other," Conroe High School Principal Rotasha Smith said.

Medical businesses in The Woodlands area adapt amid coronavirus challenges

Medical businesses such as dentists, plastic surgeons and private care practices were forced to operate at reduced capacities or close their doors in mid-March.

At-risk population in The Woodlands area faces health challenges, lifestyle changes

Life for many seniors in the area has changed due to concerns over the coronavirus and its higher risks and death rate for the older population.

Total cases have risen to 13,268 in Harris County, 7,812 of which are considered active while 5,215 are confirmed to have recovered. A total of 241 people are confirmed to have died from the coronavirus in the county.(Community Impact staff)
Harris County coronavirus count: 241 new cases, 5 deaths confirmed June 3

Meanwhile, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said 45% of new cases statewide between May 26 and June 2 can be tied to prisons, jails, meat packing plants or nursing homes.

The county's total COVID-19 case count rose by more than 20 June 3, alongside dozens of new recoveries. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
COVID-19 recoveries jump in Montgomery County; total case count continues to grow

The county reported more than 60 new COVID-19 recoveries June 3 alongside 23 new cases.