By MARTHA McCLAIN
Special to the PRESS
It was a year of quality growth and development, amid some spirited expressions of opinion, in the small community of Laguna Vista in 2018.
With the clock ticking down to the New Year, Mayor Susie Houston reflected on the Town’s most significant accomplishment in 2018.
Continued steady progress in three specific areas stood in the forefront in this bayfront municipality, the mayor said.
- Creation of an eco-tourism center.
- Establishment of a full-service health clinic.
- Progress on a contract extension with the Town-owned marina.
It was a busy year that contained many positives, she said. The Town Council’s continued dedication to working out difficult issues, meeting by meeting, can be credited with the positive direction the Town is now headed, she said.
But, the chief accomplishments among the hard work and dedication is what appears to be an imminent South Texas Eco-Tourism Visitor Center on part of a Town-owned 23-acre tract on Hwy. 100. Laguna Vista officials approved a Memorandum of Understanding with Cameron County for use of 10 acres of land at the site for construction of the facility that is expected to impact the future of this community.
Officials from the City and County are seeking funding for construction of the facility through partnerships with various state and federal granting agencies.
Representatives from Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge earlier this year requested a portion of the land be set aside for a center to be operated by US Fish and Wildlife to allow visitor access to the Bahia Grande wetlands project. The land would serve as part of a corridor connecting the Wildlife Refuge through Laguna Vista to the Bahia Grande which would at a future time include walk and bike trails as well as access to kayaking and other recreational activities.
The Town is seeking and Economic Development Administration grant for $1 million to cover utility infrastructure costs.
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