Navasota Keeping Up With Big Cities

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When you look at growth in the Brazos Valley, Navasota is near the top.

The construction of a new stadium and a Citizen's State Bank are only two of the many signs of expansion. For that reason, members of the city council are trying to get ahead of the curve.

Brad Stafford, Navasota's city manager, says the city has to prepare now.

"We are seeing growth and we are having more and more developers looking at Navasota and coming in talking to us," Stafford said.

However, some residents are concerned about the city accommodating developers. Earlier this week, the council had its first public hearing on a proposal to annex five properties. Those sites are located just off Highway 90, Highway 6 and Business 6.

Stafford says most of the businesses on those proposed areas already have some of their property classified as inside the city limits. Now, the city wants to annex the rest of their properties. Stafford says this will help the city increase its geographic size and attraction to developers.

"It just helps us out with having more land and more opportunities for them to build on," Stafford said.

Stewart Thompson is the owner of Martha's Bloomers, one of the businesses that is included in the proposed annexation plan. He says his business is a part of Navasota without technically being in the city limits. Thompson says he is happy with things just the way they are.

"It's just going to cost us more tax money, and I like to think I could reap something from that," Thompson said, "but I can't see that I am."

Thompson says even though he gets city-supplied water, he is concerned about getting access to services like sewer lines because Martha's Bloomers is located on the other side of the bypass.

"I wouldn't have as much opposition if, in fact, we would get more city services," Thompson said.

Stafford says that should not be a problem, but the first step needed to work on providing additional services is annexation.

"We have two-and-a-half years to provide those services on out there unless there are any stipulations that would require us not to," Stafford said.

The annexation proposal must have a second public hearing before the city can move ahead. That hearing is scheduled for April 23. Thompson says he plans on being in attendance.