Shavano Park City Council on Oct., 24 was briefed on the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission starting efforts to help update the city's long-range town plan, beginning with a focus on commercial development.

City officials said the commissioners in September finished a strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities analysis, and decided focus areas in the town plan revision will include commercial development, community engagement and policing, property maintenance standards and zoning, city employee management and retention, public infrastructure and long-term city finances.

According to a commission draft consensus, Shavano Park’s strengths include outstanding city services and leadership, location and natural beauty, sense of community, security and safety, and low tax rate.

Weaknesses include aging infrastructure, limited future residential and commercial developments, limited future property and sales tax growth, increasing percentage of property under tax freeze, and drainage challenges, the commission reported.

Opportunities, the commission reported, include shaping future commercial development to fit the city’s needs, transforming the City Hall campus area to better accommodate civic events and build a sense of community, and leveraging bond and grant monies to upgrade infrastructure.

Threats include city staff retention challenges; spread of oak wilt; infrastructure failures; and external pressures, such as crime, traffic congestion and the economy, the commission said.

According to the city, Shavano Park has eight tracts of undeveloped commercial land. Sales taxes from businesses provide the city with $702,000 revenue annually, making up 20% of the city’s entire property tax base.

The commission will hold a 6:30 p.m. Nov. 2 public hearing about current and future commercial development in Shavano Park. The commission will also survey local residents and merchants to get input on area commercial development.