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Overdevelopment in my perfect town
Old 05-24-2016, 04:56 PM   #1
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Overdevelopment in my perfect town

Up until a few months ago, I've loved where we live, but our house is in the blazing fast growth area between Austin and San Antonio. House values in our small subdivision have jumped 30% in 6 months. The area around our house was farms and fields, now they are building Taco Bells, Car washes, oil change places and both Walgreens and CVS, and at least 7 banks, not to mention nail salons...and I hear a Starbucks is next. They just built another strip mall across the street, with 1000 apartments coming next. Traffic of course is getting bad. I wanted to be close to town, but not this close. I wasn't planning on moving, not sure what the next step will be, as this is no longer my perfect town.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:00 PM   #2
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well that probably won't happen in Marfa
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:13 PM   #3
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Ace, I feel your pain.

Almost anywhere within a 30 mile radius of Austin along either side of I-35 down to San Antonio has absolutely exploded in the past few years. We tried to stay relatively close to San Antonio but out of the high growth area when we purchased property ~10 miles northwest of the city 20 years ago. It was nice for several years but now the population explosion is coming this way. Multiple subdivisions are building houses as fast as they can put them up plus a huge high school is under construction a few miles away. When it opens in the fall of 2017 it will house 3,000 students - and access will be via the same two lane road we've always used to get to town. That's a traffic nightmare in the making.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:23 PM   #4
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When I bought the house here in 89 the city was 23,000. It was nice then.

Now it's 85,000, but it's still nice. Yeah, it takes longer to drive across town but at least you have somewhere to go. Four sushi restaurants and 3 Indian. We even have a Korean place that also has sushi. A couple of "upclass" places for "continental" cuisine. A shopping mall and an "auto mall" and even an outlet mall. A Bevmo so you don't need to drive 20 miles to get some upscale booze.

I like it better than before.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:38 PM   #5
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If you live in Texas where the real estate is skyrocketing in price, ride that trend up and then sell out. There are so many Californians moving to your area, and big house prices seem cheap to them.

Funny thing is that Texans seldom want to leave Texas. I'm a big fan of your state, especially Chicken Fried Steak and Tex Mex food. I'm a pork barbeque guy, however.

I'm also impressed that a state as large as 4 other states can have a State Legislature that works well in spite of only meeting every other year. State policies and a lack of state income taxes make it a hot bed of new businesses--many of which are high tech.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Throwdownmyaceinthehole View Post
Up until a few months ago, I've loved where we live, but our house is in the blazing fast growth area between Austin and San Antonio. House values in our small subdivision have jumped 30% in 6 months. The area around our house was farms and fields, now they are building Taco Bells, Car washes, oil change places and both Walgreens and CVS, and at least 7 banks, not to mention nail salons...and I hear a Starbucks is next. They just built another strip mall across the street, with 1000 apartments coming next. Traffic of course is getting bad. I wanted to be close to town, but not this close. I wasn't planning on moving, not sure what the next step will be, as this is no longer my perfect town.
I feel your pain. That dastardly Mt St Helens blew up in 1980 and the river dredges used the volcanic sand to fill 9 holes of the Elks Golf Course, a dairy farm and some plain old cow pastures. Fast forward over time there are two monster big box shopping centers, upscale restaurants and at least three new motel/hotels near the I-5. New I-5 bridge and new one over the Cowlitz River.

But the old swimming hole is a housing development AND the High School cruising drive -in (think Mel's American Graffiti) moved from the strip to old town.

Heh heh heh - And furthermore that dang Katrina took the first retirement home over Lake Pontchartrain. Don't give me this things change or you can't go home again stuff. I'm ER'd.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:45 PM   #7
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Funny thing is that Texans seldom want to leave Texas.


I'm a Texan and I couldn't wait to leave.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:52 PM   #8
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I'm a Texan and I couldn't wait to leave.
You don't get a big thanks you unless you took a bunch of people with you!
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:55 PM   #9
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Happening in my town, too. I've been here all my life (Charleston, SC) and the growth on the outskirts is completely out of hand. Plus we have infrastructure that is woefully inadequate and no decent solutions in sight. But the apartments and subdivisions keep getting approved.

My commute went from a peaceful 35 minutes (24 miles) across our many bridges and scenic roadways to a nightmare of "parking lots" on every roadway, currently running an hour and 20 minutes each way. It makes me hate my job. And my town.
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:04 PM   #10
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...

My commute went from a peaceful 35 minutes (24 miles) across our many bridges and scenic roadways to a nightmare of "parking lots" on every roadway, currently running an hour and 20 minutes each way. It makes me hate my job. And my town.
Yikes. Can't imagine that change--I'd rent an apartment near work!

(We've seen a lot of growth too, which is good for our real estate holding, but bad for commute. I've kept same commuting time of 25-30 minutes for 21 miles, by periodically bumping departure earlier in morning and later in evening; not fun, but I HATE sitting in traffic!)
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:15 PM   #11
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It used to take me 2 hrs. to get up to 55 mph in Atlanta traffic when I was leaving town for work. 50 miles from downtown, it'd take me 45 minutes to get through a 4 way stop. We sold our house when the market was at the top and left the area.

The town we moved to has 2 acre minimum yards, with most much larger. They incorporated the town to keep out subdivisions with tiny yards and too many people. 7 cars in town is "rush hour."
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:46 PM   #12
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That's sad to hear, Ace. We bailed from the Austin suburbs in 2005 as the growth in Austin since the early 90s had blown us away. I often wondered how not-so-far towns like Marble Falls were going to fare in the future. Too bad your corridor is getting all built up, but can't say I'm surprised.

There is a very noticeable recent spurt of new development down here (Rio Grande Valley, McAllen, etc.), but we still don't have nearly the traffic found in the Central Texas major cities and surrounding areas.

Yeah - Bamaman - Altanta area is bad. At least they have rail which my brother uses, and he also bikes at times. But getting from his house to like Costco, or even the big outer loop, is a nightmare. So many of the inside loop roads are very small, two lane, etc.
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:49 PM   #13
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The Woodlands, TX is getting nutty with growth too.
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:56 PM   #14
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Up until a few months ago, I've loved where we live, but our house is in the blazing fast growth area between Austin and San Antonio. House values in our small subdivision have jumped 30% in 6 months. The area around our house was farms and fields, now they are building Taco Bells, Car washes, oil change places and both Walgreens and CVS, and at least 7 banks, not to mention nail salons...and I hear a Starbucks is next. They just built another strip mall across the street, with 1000 apartments coming next. Traffic of course is getting bad. I wanted to be close to town, but not this close. I wasn't planning on moving, not sure what the next step will be, as this is no longer my perfect town.
Reading this and imagining my DW and I in the situation brought on a mild panic attack. I'd run like H €ll. Take the 30%.

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Old 05-24-2016, 06:59 PM   #15
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I've become active (vocal?) with the local planning groups. Here the up/down recommendation for new development is how many "trips" will be generated. Each parcel of land is allocated "x" number of trips based on current and planned roads. But it's super congested despite all this. Most of the "trip" planning is based on a plan that includes two major road projects that are politically blocked from happening.

It got so bad my 6 mile commute was taking me 40mins-1hr by the time I retired. That was using the fastest route/parking lot - the freeway. Surface streets were far worse.

The closest mall is going through a major redo - including a high rise rental apartment tower.... All those new "trips" are based on the roads that won't be built.

The fire station (ambulances) and hospitals are on down a road that is literally a parking lot during rush hour. People die because of this. Very frustrating.
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Old 05-24-2016, 07:29 PM   #16
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I don't think our growth here in New Orleans is as out-of-bounds as in some other places. We do have population growth, but still haven't recovered our pre-Katrina population. At least it's stabilizing by now.

Traffic is surprisingly awful. We think that nobody knows how to drive any more.

Anyway, one of the nice aspects of retirement is that we don't have to battle rush hour traffic any more. We try to do our errands at times when traffic is light.
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Old 05-24-2016, 07:50 PM   #17
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That's the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!

Hehe, yeah baby! I suffered two decades of commuting to silicon valley from out here in the central valley. Hours each way. Many hours and many miles.

But the oft hated CA freeways are clear from 10 to 2. Prime retirement time for going anywhere you want and the speed limit plus.
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Old 05-24-2016, 10:10 PM   #18
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Texas is being overrun!

www.usnews.com/news/articlesAC/2016-05-19/the-fastest-growing-cities-in-america-are-in-texas
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Old 05-24-2016, 10:53 PM   #19
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Link didn't work - here:
The Fastest Growing Cities in America Are in Texas | US News
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Old 05-24-2016, 10:59 PM   #20
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I'm also impressed that a state as large as 4 other states can have a State Legislature that works well in spite of only meeting every other year.
Haven't you ever heard the Thomas Jefferson quote - "The best government is that which governs least."
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