CONNIE SWINNEY • STAFF WRITER
MARBLE FALLS — An annual state-of-the-city report has revealed business prospects for Marble Falls as well as its financial health, future and ongoing projects in the community, according to the document.
The report listed a couple of national fast-food chain restaurants that have begun setting up stakes in the community, City Manager Mike Hodge said.
“We’ve got Chick-fil-A, which has submitted plans and is going through the review process. (I) anticipate they’ll probably open if we can get them started pretty quick in early part of 2017,” he said.
The chicken restaurant is proposed to be located at the intersection of Commerce and the 2100 block of U.S. 281, the site of the former Edgar Funeral Home.
A well-known burger chain might change the landscape at an intersection that currently features an auto repair shop and a resale business.
“Burger King is looking at the southwest corner of 1431 and 281,” he said. “I think they see that there’s a good market for it, and we’re starting to see a lot more traffic both on 1431 and 281.”
City officials revealed progress on current business construction.
“We’ve got the Bealls store coming on-line in April of next year (1500 block of RR 1431). The (new) H-E-B should come on-line, basically, at the end of 2017,” he said. “Ross (2500 block of U.S. 281) is completed, and they’re trying to get open this month, August to September.”
Along with the economic prospects, the document unveiled infrastructure and capital improvement program (CIP) projects.
“We’ve got some major CIP projects we’re working on, primarily water and sewer side,” Hodge said. “We’ve got the public safety building. We’re going to be looking at some funding.”
City officials also approved reinstating some positions and creating others, including assistant city manager, water plant operator and a patrol officer for the upcoming budget year.
Other highlights of the state of the city include:
• Proposed Gregg Ranch subdivision at the intersection of U.S. 281 and Texas 71 near the Baylor Scott & White Medical Center is expected to break ground sometime in 2017.
• Homesteads at Mormon Mill, currently under construction, will feature 70 apartment units just off U.S. 281 on Mormon Mill Road. It’s scheduled to open in 2017.
• City’s bond rating has improved to AA-minus due to factors such as an increased reserve fund and conservative spending.
• Staff numbers have decreased. Since 2008, the city has reduced the number of employees from 127 to 106.
• Construction is underway on the final phase of an approximately $4 million water plant expansion and $2 million wastewater plant upgrades. Officials expect to dedicate $8 million in bonds to help fund the improvements.