Murky Waters. New home/office/retail development by City of Dallas, Lucy, to be anchored by Chief Energy gas wells site.
When the proposed drill site by Chief Energy at North Lake first came on the radar about 3 years, you probably could not find many people in Dallas who knew what a ‘North Lake’ was when asked. The small man made lake was created for the old Luminant Energy plant long since closed. This location sits between Irving, Coppell, and Grapevine and right next door is the famous development known as Valley Ranch. Yes, that Valley Ranch which is home to the training center for the Dallas Cowboys.
The City of Dallas acquired the land AROUND the lake but not the water rights. The mineral rights? We are not for sure on that one. Next step, the City of Dallas made a decision to work with CYPRESS WATERS. You have seen our previous postings about Cypress Waters and you now know that it is a subsidary of Billingsley. Headed by none other than Lucy Crow Billingsley. Daughter of Trammel Crow Sr. That Trammel Crow, aka Mr. Dallas.
Cypress Waters already has some retail development sitting on the north side of I635 featuring the DUMP. The 10,000 residential units have not been built yet, but are planned to surround the lake and sit adjacent to the drill site.
On May 13, 2011 the City of Dallas saw a media presentation of a new development to be located at North Lake around the lake known as Cypress Waters and developed by the Billingsley company with a proposed $9.7 million TIF agreement with the City of Dallas. See the presentation below and look through it.
Fabulous? You bet. Look at page 3, see at the top of the map? A small rectangle is the old Luminant plant. Now, look at page 14. Same place. “FUTURE DEVELOPMENT SITE” is all you see. Not a word about drilling anywhere,until page 17. Up at the top of the drawing in very faint lettering you see:DRILL SITE. No where in the document is anything mentioned about drilling and yet the drilling as been planned even before the announcement of the $45 million development by Billingsley for Dallas on Dallas land.
Now, jump ahead to June 8, 2011 where we have the minutes from the Dallas City Council. On this day, the city council voted unanimously to APPROVE the TIF proposal and green lighting the project. Look at page 49 on this document and the the pages following.
Here’s where it gets really interesting. Below, we show the map from the City of Dallas that reveals what Chief Energy is waiting on currently. They have done everything right, they have jumped through all the hoops PRIOR to the current hold on any gas drilling applications. All they want is the permit and then, they can break ground on drilling. See the map below.
We feel that the entire membership of the Dallas city council who on June 8, 2011 voted unanimously to approve this are obligated to explain to the public why they voted to approve this knowing that this TIF funded development also features drill site. No one on the council raised a red flag. No one asked any questions. No one asked how this development would coexist with the drill site needing only a permit having previously received approval for all other steps. Now, they must explain to the residents of Dallas, the justification of this vote.
Now, the murky waters begin to reveal what is truly going on. It appears that the City of Dallas has entered into an agreement with Cypress Waters and Chief Energy into a development deal that will net everyone involved an unknown amount of dollars based not only on the development itself but potential gas revenues. We want to hear the plans that they have to protect not only those future citizens, and the effects that gas drilling would have on the entire project. From the beginning there have been not only unanswered questions about this development, but a sense that there are deliberate murky details not yet fully explained. Murky indeed.