• December 19, 2014

Bell Co. commissioners back senior living center in Salado

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Posted: Monday, March 10, 2014 11:12 pm

BELTON — The Bell County Commissioners Court approved a resolution supporting the development of a new 50-unit apartment complex for senior citizens in the Salado area. The unanimous vote was cast without discussion at the commissioners’ Monday morning meeting.

Precinct 2 Commissioner Tim Brown, whose district includes Salado, said that because construction is planned for an unincorporated area northeast of the intersection of Mary Lane and Vanessa Street, a location outside the current Salado village limits, county involvement was necessary.

“We aren’t typically asked for resolutions because these are usually built inside city limits,” Brown said. “From what I understand, the developers have a handshake agreement for annexation with the city.”

Mark Feaster, a consultant for JES Development Co., the firm behind planning the property, said he expects Salado will annex the property. Feaster also said that, despite resolutions of support from both Bell County and the village of Salado, construction is not guaranteed.

“We’re applying for a competitive grant that’s administered by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs,” Feaster said. “There are two other projects in the region that are also competing.”

The Salado project, named Hidden Glen, is in the running with a general housing project in Hillsboro and another senior living center in Brenham. Hidden Glen would be located on 10 to 12 acres, feature 35 two-bedroom apartments and 15 one-bedroom.

In addition to hike and bike trails throughout the grounds, the development will feature a cart path that links to a nearby subdivision, as well as a separate, stand-alone cart storage building for residents.

Feaster said the Department of Housing and Community Affairs website confirmed that Hidden Glen is currently leading the funding race in its category.

Salado Mayor Danney McCort said the project also would provide more revenue for the school district.

“The schools will get an estimated $75,000 in property tax revenue with no additional students,” McCort said. However, the complex has to be built first and Feaster said that’s still not a sure thing.

He also indicated that if the project doesn’t win the grant, JES would not go forward with development. If it turns out that, when the housing department makes its announcement in July, Hidden Glen does receive the grant, construction will begin as soon as possible, Feaster said.

“We like to start construction as soon as we can after we close on the land,” Feaster said.

“That’ll be around November or December and then it’s a 12-month process.”

He added that JES has no plans for presale or preleasing of the units until the company “knows we got the grant.”

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