Friday, March 7, 2008

Looking forward to this


I hope I'm still be around to enjoy the new facilities.

Downtown New Braunfels the place to be for Comal offices
Roger Croteau: Express-News

NEW BRAUNFELS — The Comal County Commissioners Court approved a deal to purchase three downtown lots for $1.5 million Thursday, with tentative plans to build a justice center there.

Commissioners approved an earnest money contract with Bennie Bock to buy the land, at Seguin Avenue and Bridge Street. It includes an office and two parking lots.

County Judge Danny Scheel said unlike towns where county offices are spread all over town, "I want all our offices downtown where people can find them and know where they are."
He said county officials had discussed moving offices to other areas, but, "In my opinion, that would have been suicide for downtown New Braunfels. It would have been a ghost town down here, and I want to make sure it continues to prosper."

Bock said he had some plans for the property, but Scheel was "very persuasive."
"I share Judge Scheel's vision for what downtown should be," Bock said. "I'm very happy to be part of a growing downtown."

The county is also working on an agreement with the city of New Braunfels to build a multilevel parking garage downtown, Scheel said. The deal could include a special taxing district to help pay for it, he said.

Scheel said it makes sense to put all the courts in a single, secure location.
"We don't have a secure front door to screen people and make sure they don't bring weapons into the courtroom," he said. "It appalls me to see officers with rifles and shotguns outside my window because there is no place to securely unload the inmates when we bring them to court. We have 12 or 13 inmates sitting in the jury box in court because there is no secure place to keep them."