Kyle, Uhland swap ETJ land to clarify development codes

The  city of Kyle has agreed to swap extraterritorial jurisdiction land with a neighboring city, a move officials say will resolve tricky boundary issues that can make development codes unclear.

Tuesday evening during the Kyle City Council meeting, council members voted unanimously to trade a combined amount of nearly 400 acres with the city of Uhland. In exchange for 229.8 acres from Uhland, Kyle would give up 168.4 acres. More important than the size of the land in question is its location in the ETJ, City Manager Scott Sellers said.

Several months ago, Kyle was approached by Uhland to consider trading lands in their ETJs, which back up to each other, in hopes of cleaning up ETJ boundaries and clearing up confusion for developers.

Under Texas law, the way cities claimed ETJ land was basically “first come, first serve,” Sellers said. In some cases, like in Kyle and Uhland, this resulted in choppy borders that do not reflect actual land parcel lines.

“As communities annex and develop into their ETJs, some of the parcels that are caught and have dual standards by which to develop under,” Sellers said.

When a Uhland developer found part of their tract was in Uhland’s ETJ and the remainder was technically in Kyle’s jurisdiction, they wrote a letter asking for the land to be released from Kyle to Uhland. Among other reasons, the developer wanted to be in the Uhland ETJ because wastewater is more available, Sellers said.

Staff of both cities decided to nip the problem in the bud and fix any other border between the ETJs of Kyle and Uhland that could cause the same problem in the future.

“We think it’s a very equitable split between the communities,” Sellers said.

The deal will not be official until Uhland City Council votes on the issue, which Sellers said is scheduled for Wednesday.

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