Economic Development Corporation > Projects
Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone – The San Benito Economic Development Corporation approved a project to fund the development and creation of the City's first Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone. Tax increment financing is a tool that local governments may use to publicly finance needed structural improvements and enhanced infrastructure within a defined area of the City or County.
Proposed uses include:
Tourism and Quality of Life Projects
Improvements to Plaza de San Benito - The City of San Benito, with use of funds from the San Benito
Economic Development Corporation, has leveraged $1.4 million in funding for development of two (2) facilities – one for the Museums of San Benito ($700,000) to include the San Benito Historical Society, The South Texas Conjunto Hall of Fame and the Freddy Fender Museums. A second facility is planned to include a new civic center auditorium ($700,000). Also, the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center's interior was renovated. After submitting a pre-application for planning funds to the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA), the agency invited us to submit a full application for a feasibility study, which was a $150,000 matching grant. The local match of $50,000 was provided by the Economic Development Corporation. The detailed feasibility study addressed such logistical issues as where to best construct the facilities, the use of an existing historical building to house the museums, and the cost factors associated with the construction of a new facility or the renovation of an existing historical structure.
The City will prepare another EDA matching grant application, this time for construction funds. While the City already has 1.4 million dollars as part the local match for construction, there will be an additional need of approximately $2,000,000 to complete the total construction project for both facilities.
Renovation of Municipal Swimming Pool - Remains under study at this time.
San Benito Memorial Park Cemetery - A new, more modern City Cemetery is pending completion utilizing San Benito EDC funding $250,000 in planning and construction costs to include infrastructure improvements. Located at 2500 Hwy. 345, the new facility should open this summer.
The site currently includes an impressive memorial and the gravesite of Grammy Award Winner and the Internationally-known music icon Freddy Fender, who was born and raised in San Benito. With its impressive black granite monuments topped with bronze plaques engraved with the entertainer's biiography and discography, the site has become a tourist attraction in its own right.
Pending SBEDC Projects:
Expansion of Turner Road - Expand Turner Road from Oscar Williams Road to Zillock Road. Cost estimate is $300,000.
Reconstruction of UTEX Street - Reconstruct U-Tex Street at the San Benito Industrial Park. Cost estimate is $150,000.
Expansion of Heavin Amphitheater Park - Located on the beautiful Resaca de los Fresnos, Heavin Resaca Trail and Heavin Memorial Park feature a colorful and relaxing outdoor amphitheater which serves as a venue for community concerts, events and performances including the Annual Resaca Fest on the Fourthof July.
The City leveraged local funds with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department grant funds to develop this project and received funds from the Heavin family to enhance the project. The combined trail and amphitheater attract visitors and residents alike.
The San Benito EDC has allocated another $250,000 to acquire property to construct a parking lot and possibly other park amenities to build upon the unique quality of this specially-designed public facility.
San Benito Veterans War Memorial
Renovations to the San Benito Veterans War Memorial - Construction is nearing completion on the San Benito Veterans War Memorial. Grand open is scheduled July 4, 2011.
Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors, Veterans Advisory Board members and the San Benito City Commission worked toward its completion.
The site is at the precise location where young sailors and soldiers boarded trains to take them to foreign conflict. The City is constructing a new Veterans War Memorial to honor our war dead and all veterans who have served in the U.S. Military. The San Benito vicinity has a rich, patriotic history of men and women who have fought for their country. Their service is recognized each Veterans Day and each Memorial Day in beautiful ceremonies at the existing Veterans Pavilion. The San Benito EDC has set aside $350,000construct a new, more fitting memorial for our veterans.
Installation of New Street Lights for Downtown - This project consists of improving street lighting on Sam Houston Blvd. and Robertson Streets in an effort to support the City’s Historic Preservation efforts and to encourage the resurgence of retail development inthe City.
The San Benito EDC has allocated $215,000 toward this project.
Rio South Texas Economic Council - The San Benito Economic Development Coorporation is proud to be a part of the Formation of the Rio South Texas Economic Council. The council promotes and develops regional assets; brings together the economic development interests of the region in order to attract outside investment; 18 representatives from the region make up the council today.