City mulls venue tax projects

Special to the PRESS

On Wednesday, Jan. 18, the South Padre Island City Council held a public workshop to discuss potential ways venue taxes could be used on the Island. During the November election, Island voters overwhelmingly approved increasing the venue tax by 2 percent. Wednesday’s discussions focused on five potential project areas including making Padre Boulevard median improvements, adding a Convention Centre Annex, building a parking garage, creating a wind sport facility, and building an amphitheater.

Assistant City Manager Darla Jones presented background information on the Padre Boulevard median project. “The median will be 14 feet wide, which is the width of our center turn lane right now,” said Jones. She went on to explain that a study was completed to determine the best placement for turning areas to cross the median. As to the issue of why the city need medians, Jones explained that the studies indicated that by reducing the potential for traffic conflict points, it can reduce the crash rate by 30 percent. She further explained that expanding the medians from Kingfish Street out to the Convention Centre would result in a 42 percent reduction in potential traffic conflict points.

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