Flower Mound Leader > News
Council wants discussion on soccer fields, tree mitigation
There will likely be discussions in the coming weeks regarding two issues that the Flower Mound Town Council has taken up in previous years -- a possible land swap involving the Chinn Chapel Soccer Complex and tree mitigation.
During Monday’s council meeting, Councilman Steve Dixon said he wanted the town to re-examine the possibility of a land swap of the soccer complex, located near the intersection of FM 407 and Chinn Chapel Road. This item was also discussed during a joint work session with the Parks, Arts and Library Services (PALS) Board earlier this month.
During the 2010 municipal election, residents voted down the sale of the soccer complex and the purchase of a 23-acre piece of land east of the complex between Dixon Lane and Waketon Road. The measure failed by 59 votes.
Dixon said it’s important to revisit the issue.
“Today, how much does Flower Mound gain from having a soccer field on that property?” Dixon said. “It’s a pure expense. There was an initiative in 2010 to swap that property to put the soccer fields in another location and sell the property to help it become a complementary retail area to what Highland Village has.”
Dixon said that area of Flower Mound has the chance to become a regional draw with Academy Sports and Outdoors set to be located there in the future, as well as the retail and restaurants that exist across the street in Highland Village. He said making that location a retail spot would only increase the town’s ad valorem tax base and sales tax revenue.
“The impact is huge,” Dixon said.
Dixon added if the soccer fields were moved to another location in Flower Mound, then families who go to the complex would be closer to Flower Mound restaurants to go eat at after the games. Now, he said, families leaving the Chinn Chapel Soccer Complex go to Highland Village afterward.
“There’s no benefit to Flower Mound,” Dixon said.
Dixon said the PALS Board has been asked to examine locations in Flower Mound where new soccer fields could be located. He said a new complex could also provide more fields and a larger parking area.
Should Flower Mound pursue the land swap, it would again go to the voters.
Also Monday, Councilwoman Jean Levenick asked the town staff to examine the possibility of reviewing the town’s tree removal/mitigation process as it pertains to specific planned areas, or SPAs.
The town has a tree ordinance in place that requires tree mitigation based on size, and it uses a credit system. For example, developers or builders are required to plant one 2.5-inch to 3-inch caliper tree for each protected tree removed from the site. Also, developers are credited for each protected tree that is preserved.
However, SPAs have their own regulations, and developers are not required to provide mitigation for tree loss during the construction of projects in those areas.
“We’ve been losing a lot of trees,” Levenick said. “The Environmental Conservation Commission [ECC] has been asking about this for a long time, so it’s about time we look at it.”
The ECC is in the process of compiling a list of recommendations regarding the town’s sustainability plan, and the tree removal process in SPAs is part of that.
Levenick asked if the council could receive information on the issue by the end of the year, possibly in a work session.