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Approved subdivision gas station fuels protest from neighbors

Legacy Crossing plans in Marble Falls

A gas station proposed for Phase 1A of Legacy Crossing, a new master-planned community at the southeast corner of the U.S. 281-Texas 71 intersection in Marble Falls. Screen-captured image

Nine residents of the Gregg Ranch and Foxwood subdivisions unsuccessfully lobbied the Marble Falls City Council to stop the construction of a gas station planned for Legacy Crossing, a proposed development near the U.S. 281-Texas 71 intersection. 

The residents expressed concerns over crime and health risks during the Oct. 3 council meeting.

“I cannot ignore the call from my heart, my conscience, and I feel like I must do this as a mother,” said Foxwood resident Christine Maxey. “I and 65 of my neighbors signed a petition opposing the gas station within 500 feet of our homes within 24 hours. That’s how much we’re concerned.”

Marble Falls Mayor Dave Rhodes explained the city’s position, citing the U.S. Constitution.

“What you’re asking us to potentially do borders on unconstitutional at this point,” he said. “You could make the case.”

Legacy Crossing developers have been working their way through city building and permitting processes since 2015, he continued.

“If in fact we go back and undo the bow, it’s taking (from someone),” Rhodes said. “If I’m the owner of that and I put money in developing it, I’m going to sue you.”

The master-planned subdivision includes 100 acres of commercial space, more than 1,000 single-family homes, 264 multi-family units, 150 mixed-use townhome units, six public parks, more than 3 miles of interconnected walking trails, and space for a new fire station for Marble Falls Fire Rescue. The development surrounds Foxwood subdivision and is across U.S. 281 from Gregg Ranch.

At the City Council meeting, residents lined up to speak against the station’s construction and ask for a continuance on the item.

“To be clear, we’re not saying no to a gas station,” Maxey said. “We’re asking that it be built somewhere else.”

Chris Duran, a native of the Chicago suburbs, talked about his past experience with crime at gas stations before moving to Central Texas three years ago.

“There’s a thing in the Chicagoland suburbs that refers to gas stations that are so close to a highway and so easy to get in and out of. They call them ‘spots,’” he said. “They’re not spots for doing good things. These are things I have seen.”

Charlotte Cooper of Gregg Ranch shared similar concerns.

“I just looked forward to living in a beautiful place for the next 20 or so years that would be a safe, residential neighborhood,” she said. “I have nothing against gas stations or convenience stores — we all need them — I just would rather not have that right across the street from where I live. It will cause me to lose sleep, seriously.”

Councilor Karlee Cauble defended the safeness of Marble Falls.

“I wouldn’t raise my son here if I thought it was unsafe at all,” she said. “Our police department and fire department are amazing people. That should give you some reassurance. That’s what gives me my reassurance.”

Another resident, Allison Baker of Gregg Ranch, spoke to potential health issues caused by living in close proximity to a gas station.

“With my husband and I getting ready to bring our first child into the world and with our aging parents visiting frequently to enjoy Marble Falls with us, I worry about the impacts the gas station’s emissions will have on us with the proposed placement about 500 feet from our home,” she said. “There is scientific research and backing linking these emissions to cancer risk and other health concerns. Our quality of life will be at risk in our own backyard.”

Rhodes responded that it was not the city’s responsibility to tell a property owner they could not build on their land.

“This is a free market economy and they get to build what they want to build within reason,” he said.

Following the over 1½-hour public hearing, the City Council voted 5-0 to approve the updated plans for the subdivision, which include the gas station. Councilors Griff Morris and Bryan Walker were absent from the meeting.

“We’re not doing it in spite, I assure you,” Rhodes said. “We are bound by legalities.”

11 thoughts on “Approved subdivision gas station fuels protest from neighbors

  1. Who are you to determine who does and doesn’t get a water meter? What rights do you have that they don’t?

  2. Yeah you can’t stop people from building but you can stop issuing water meters. If they can’t get water they won’t build. Just think how much more of drought and water restrictions these subdivisions will cause or are already causing.

  3. We definitely need another gas station around here. We’re also pretty short on fast food and church’s. They need to build gas stations in each subdivision then charge an entrance fee to be able to use it, along with a inconvenience fee.

  4. Many of us who have lived here for the past 40 years would have preferred these new developments never happened, but that is not the way the laws of the land work. The irony here is that if all these people didn’t buy homes in the new developments, there likely would not be a gas station going in. You should be more concerned about traffic because I have yet to figure out how the city is going to manage all the increased traffic. Have you driven on 281 in Marble Falls? Wait until another 5,000 people are also trying to use the same road. I’m afraid it’s going to be a case of too little too late regarding traffic planning – I hope I am wrong.

    1. Yes Alex you’re absolutely correct, they have already overbuilt this area and will continue to over build the area with non-pervious concrete structures all over the two or three counties here and destroy as many trees as possible move nature out of the way with bulldozers, increase the heat footprint increasingly, overtax every bit of the infrastructure , the key one of those is water, even after a couple of close calls and a recreational Lake that we drink out of, which is now had at least three cases of the brain eating amoeba disease, the people with the second homes here use the lake like a toilet, the very wealthy in the parks near these lakes don’t have any restrictions on pumping water to integrate extent but more importantly no restrictions on pesticides herbicides etc all known to be hurtful to humans and animals, I’m probably not going to go back and check for spelling but the shortsightedness of people here is noteworthy and stunning, my favorite part of the conversation was not in my backyard but you can put it in somebody else’s, I like the term spot, in other words that’s where the black people go to make their deals and hang out ,at that spot, when it is built and my guess is it will be but we can make sure we save that guy’s name so he can go up there and do the policing on the people that may go to that place, or stop, to stop for gas and every plastic bottle drink known to mankind.

    2. I think there are plans for a road to cross over the upper end of Lake MF, below Wirtz Dam. From Cottonwood Shores to the west side of Marble Falls. That would help.

    3. Regarding traffic, I hope they build that road from Cottonwood Shores to MF, below Wirtz Dam, across Lake MF…that would help.

  5. You are out of your paranoid minds trying to make the argument that a gas station in southern Burnet county is going to bring crime at the level of Chicago. People who will move into the houses you are buying and have bought will bring in the crime. When was the last time a gas station was robbed or burglarized any where in Marble Falls?

  6. We never heard about the Legacy Crossing Development until about a year ago. It backs up to our pasture.

  7. This has got to be the most paranoid group of people I’ve ever heard of….you guys live in a suburban sprawl neighborhood next to an intersection (281/71) that is geared to see the greatest concentration of development than has ever happened in the history of Burnet County. You knew that going in, if you did your research before buying, and you’re complaining about it now? And that doesn’t even begin to cover the merits of your argument about a gas station. You must be incredibly fearful when walking into HEB.

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