By Mason W. Canales
The Cove Herald
Development in Copperas Cove remained steady this past year, with several commercial and home construction projects under way.
"(Residential development) has been pretty slow for the last two years, but obviously, the commercial development has been growing," said City Manager Andrea Gardner, noting that there are several areas where homes are being built. "I think (residential development) will increase as the builders see the commercial developments coming in that should help the desire for more rooftops."
According to city documents, there are seven residential developments in the city that have sites for new homes. The city issued 147 home construction permits during the 2010-11 fiscal year, which ended in September.
The documents stated that 169 home construction permits were issued in the 2009-10 fiscal year and 143 in 2009-08.
Skyline Ridge, Skyline Flats and Walker Place subdivisions experienced several new home construction projects in recent years, said Gardner.
"It is healthy that the market has existing housing stock and probably a limited space for new homes," said Chris Stewart, of Stewart Planning and Consulting in Austin. He manages the city's planning. In a market like Copperas Cove, homebuyers have options. They can build or purchase existing homes.
At least three residential subdivisions are in the planning phases. According to city documents, the subdivisions could contain more than 860 lots for homes once they are developed.
"I think (developers) are just waiting for that right time to jump back in and develop residential housing," said Stewart.
Commercial development in Copperas Cove remains steady as businesses continue to renovate, convert and construct new buildings in which to operate, said Stewart.
The Shops of Five Hills is the largest commercial development. There also are several renovations and conversions of businesses along U.S. Highway 190 and off Farm-to-Market 116, he said. "It is a nice mix, and that is going to be important moving forward, that we utilize our existing building stock and that we continue to build new."
Stewart said though a large retail business hasn't opened recently, the growth Copperas Cove is experiencing means "the city seems to be weathering the recession."
According to city documents, a Starbucks is nearly finished, several convenience stores are being built, and a Caliber Collision Center is now open.
Gardner said several areas in the north and west sides of the city could become prime real estate for commercial development because of their proximity to the State Highway 9 and the U.S. 190 bypass projects.
Contact Mason W. Canales at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7474. Follow him on Twitter at KDHcoveeditor.