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Cottonwood Shores OKs massive RV resort development

Monarch Luxury Motorcoach Resort plans

Plans for the proposed Monarch Luxury Motorcoach Resort in Cottonwood Shores. Screen-captured image

The largest development in the history of Cottonwood Shores — a 93-acre RV resort park with luxury amenities — was recently given a thumbs-up by the City Council. 

Monarch Luxury Motorcoach Resort will have 343 concrete RV pads as well as townhomes, duplexes, a base camp lodge, pools, pickleball courts, kayak and canoe rentals, cabins, glamping opportunities, a boat ramp, and a dog park. It would be located between Dogwood Lane and Ridgeview Drive along Lake Marble Falls. 

According to City Administrator J.C. Hughes, the development will be about one-fourth of the size of Cottonwood Shores.

“This is a huge project,” Hughes said. “You can’t underscore how big of a deal this is for the city.”

Current projections demonstrate the resort will double the city’s tax base and generate over $30 million in annual consumer spending.

“Financially, it’s going to have a huge impact as far as bringing in sales tax and ad valorem taxes,” Hughes said. “It’s going to have a domino effect on the local economy from a retail and commercial standpoint.”

Cottonwood Shores will also receive $2 per RV site on a per-night basis. That figure is anticipated to total over $100,000 of additional annual revenues for city coffers.

“We’ll see a huge financial benefit,” Hughes said.

He believes the resort’s commercial impact will be felt across the Highland Lakes.

“It’s going to have a ripple effect on the communities around us,” he said. “From Burnet to Johnson City, from Spicewood over to Llano, it’s going to have a major commercial and retail impact on this whole area.”

A proposed bridge over upper Lake Marble Falls connecting the north and south sides of the lake ignited talks between the developer and the city roughly two years ago.

“The Wirtz Dam Bridge is what kind of got their attention,” Hughes said.

Site topography also heightened developer interest.

“There’s a lot of rock and topographic changes in a small area,” he said. “It didn’t lend itself much as a housing development. In a motorcoach (development), you can use the topography to your advantage for some of the amenities. We see it as the best use (for the site).”

The city’s infrastructure improvements over the past few years made the deal possible, Hughes said.

“In the last three or four years, we’ve actually improved our infrastructure greatly,” he said. 

Developers Hill Country Holdings LLC committed an additional $1 million for further infrastructure improvements to ensure Cottonwood Shores can grow in the coming years.

“They bent over backward for us, we bent over backward for them,” Hughes said. “It’s a huge win for the community.”

Hill Country Holdings has four years to break ground on Monarch Luxury Motorcoach Resort, although Hughes anticipates “dirt to turn” sooner than that.

“Realistically, it will probably start construction in two years,” he said. “We gave them a time period that they could live with because they’ve got to go out and get the financing and engineers to do all the pre-engineering work.”

nathan@thepicayune.com