Dripping Springs OK’s Esperanza subdivision plat

More than 100 new residential lots might soon call Dripping Springs home after city leaders Tuesday approved the preliminary plat application for the Esperanza Subdivision, a controversial new development in the city’s extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ)

Originally proposed in 2017, the project shifted developers, leading to the proposed plat’s return to the city council in late February. City leaders postponed a vote on the item at that time due to an error in a public notice. Dripping Springs’ City Council Tuesday approved the application by a 5-0 vote.

Like many other developments in Dripping Springs’ ETJ, city leaders did not deny the project as it complies with existing ordinances. Additionally, the city has limited administrative powers with properties in the ETJ.

However, the subdivision was the subject of controversy as local residents cited concerns they had with the project.

Local residents off of Bell Springs Road urged the city council to reconsider the plat, citing traffic and density concerns.

“I don’t feel like we’ve had a whole lot of representation,” said Jacobed Lube, a local resident on Bell Springs Road. “Putting nearly one-acre development next to 15-acre properties is concerning.”

Lube said his property borders the development which will soon change the landscape of the rural property.

“Property owners are concerned about representation…,” Lube said. “Last time I was here, it was a done deal. I still have concerns about density. Once this development is here, what future developments could come behind us?”

Residents also brought up concerns with traffic on Bell Springs Road, which they aid is not adeuately built to handle an estimated 200 more vehicles.

Mayor Todd Purcell said he met with Hays County Pct. 4 Commissioner Walt Smith regarding concerns toward Bell Springs Road. In February, multiple residents worried over the maintenance of both Harmon Hill and Bell Springs Road and conflicting signage that showed Hays County and Dripping Springs were responsible for it. 

Council member Travis Crow said the city needs to receive confirmation from Hays County on which jurisdiction is responsible road maintenance.

“If they belong to us, we need to be responsible for them, but if they do not, we need to take those signs down,” Crow said. 

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