In an effort to stay ahead of the coming growth, Granite Shoals city leaders invited representatives from across Central Texas to a Dec. 17 meeting to examine key issues for the city.
“The whole premise of the meeting is to get stakeholders together to get their thoughts on how they want to see Granite Shoals prosper and how to manage the growth instead of the growth managing us,” City Manager Jeff Looney said.
The 14 attendees represented a wide spectrum of interests, including tourism, real estate, business, economic development, and government.
As the city looks to the future, Looney suggested starting an economic development corporation. The Dec. 17 meeting could be the first step toward achieving that goal, he said.
The group reviewed an aerial map of the city to view current housing, businesses, and available land for growth. They also discussed the lack of a wastewater treatment plant, which will be needed to promote future growth in the area.
One of the big areas within Granite Shoals primed for commercial development is RR 1431. It’s something the attendees all pointed out.
“We’ll look at ways to do that,” Looney said. “That’s more funded through new development.”
This would mean enticing new businesses, corporations, and even chain retail outlets to the city.
“We discussed what’s the right fit for Granite Shoals,” Looney said. “We’re going to be looking at who we think we need to go after. That’s a big project.”
Another topic of conversation was the Wirtz Dam Bridge. Burnet County Judge James Oakley has said the project will go out to bid in 2024.
While much of the talk has been on the bridge’s impact to FM 2147 in Cottonwood Shores and Horseshoe Bay, some residents have raised questions regarding what the bridge will do on RR 1431. The plan is to link RR 1431 east of Granite Shoals with FM 2147 in Cottonwood Shores via a bridge below Wirtz Dam across Lake Marble Falls.
Looney was confident the bridge’s construction will be a positive development for the area.
“It probably in the long run helps Granite Shoals,” he said.
The meeting also served as a great networking opportunity for attendees.
“It brought developers and land owners together to exchange phone numbers,” the city manager said. “That will be productive in the long run.”
When it was over, Looney said he felt people left with open minds on what lies ahead for Granite Shoals.
“They’re willing to see what they can do together to make Granite Shoals prosper,” he said. “That’s the big takeaway for me.”
This won’t be the last meeting of this nature to happen, Looney continued.
“I had a number of people text me to say they appreciated being invited,” he said. “The meeting was successful, and we have a long ways to go.”