A sports complex with soccer fields and pickleball courts, retail and a restaurant and beer garden could be built on Bill Owens Parkway south of H.G. Mosley Parkway.
On Tuesday, the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission gave initial approval to a rezone of about 11.5 acres at 1022 Bill Owens Parkway from multi-family to general retail. The issue will go before the City Council for final consideration May 12.
The project’s developer, Kenneth Shore with ShoreCarter Resources, wants to tie the development into the Paul Boorman Trail that runs behind the property.
“This property sat here for a long time,” Shore told commissioners, and he said he plans to leave much of the land wooded so it will remain a “pretty spot.”
He referenced similar developments in larger cities, such as the Katy Trail Ice House and others.
“There’s not a place to hang out like this at all (in Longview),” Shore said.
Also, he said it ties into conversations he’s had with the Longview Economic Development Corp. about attracting and keeping young professionals in the city.
City Planner Angela Choy told commissioners about the city’s comprehensive plan and its objective to expand and support the arts and entertainment venues, and to seek development of “additional family friendly venues” and recreation opportunities, while improving the arts, sports and recreation experiences for young professionals.
“I want this place in Longview. I want to have this place here,” Shore said. “I think it would be a great addition to the city.”
The project did attract opposition from people who own or live in duplexes that are next door to the planned venue, but commissioners ultimately voted in favor of the zoning change and to grant a specific use permit also required to operate a “permanent outdoor amusement” and beer garden in an area zoned for general retail.
A proposal to build a self-storage mini-warehouse on Eastman Road left Tuesday’s Planning and Zoning Commission meeting with mixed results.
Denny Bowles and his Selwob Investments previously received planning and zoning and Longview City Council approval for a rezone of two properties further north on Eastman Road from his most recent proposal. He plans to build an apartment complex on one of the pieces of property.
Bowles’ newest proposal would make it possible to build the self-storage facility, which he said there is a “great need for” by the apartment complexes in that area.
“I’m here to try to develop a piece of property that sat here for years,” Bowles told commissioners
The commission, however, took no action on the request to rezone the 6.6 acres at 2447 N. Eastman Road from single-family to retail, which would allow the storage facility to be built there. The lack of action came after people who live in a nearby single-family development spoke against the project. Homeowners who spoke at the meeting worried about crime, traffic noise and light pollution, among other concerns.
However, the Planning and Zoning Commission did approve a specific use permit that the storage facility also would need to locate there on Eastman Road.
The issue now will go before the City Council on May 12.
Golf cart store expands
Golf Car Ranch, which first opened in 1996, has expanded into Longview with its third location.
The Longview store is at 3404 N. Fourth St., where Superior Outfitters was located before moving to Loop 281. The business also has stores in Hawkins and Mineola, with a total of 16 employees.
“Over the last 12 years, I’ve just built up my customers from Longview over in Wood County,” said owner Steve Ameen. Those Longview customers encouraged him to open a location here.
While the golfing season lasts about nine to 10 months in Texas, Ameen said he has developed the business so it’s no longer seasonal.
“We’re busy all the time,” he said by serving sports clays events and soccer tournaments, festivals, summer camps and retreats.. “I take care of multiple municipalities all over East Texas.”
Ameen said he also gets wedding customers from the Metroplex who rent his six passenger cars, and he provides all the golf cars for the city of Canton’s First Monday trade days.
He doesn’t sell only golf carts, but he sells and rents a variety of similar vehicles, such as utility vehicles and 4-by-4s with hydraulic dump beds. Golf Car Ranch also services the vehicles.