Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sports facilities in The Woodlands

Are we doing it again? It looks more and more like we just want to look for solutions for being a business rather than solutions for our quality of living. This community was established for families to have a quality lifestyle in the forest, not be center of commercial draw for the Houston-Galveston area. Let's not  bring Town Center into the neighborhoods. Now we seem to want to be in the sports business. What will be next? Oh, I almost forgot - bicycles. That was another item on yesterday's board of directors meeting. What are the consequences? Traffic - more outsiders in our neighborhoods. 

Are we going to build another sports complex to be the best sports hosting facility in the area?  I was hoping for a focus on residents. I have heard from many residents that we have a shortage of sports fields for their children. Yes, we should host teams from the area, but what we should seek is capacity for our children to play sports, not capacity for regional or state events. What is our shortage? From what I have been able to ascertain, we need lacrosse and soccer fields, because the teams have the difficult, if not impossible task to schedule fields for our children.

We should not be the Montgomery sports field complex, and we should have cooperative agreements with nearby sports complexes. If we have capacity for our children and nearby developments and municipalities provide additional facilities, and that is not enough to host events for our children, then so be it. Go elsewhere.

Again, what are we doing? What is our goal? Listening to members of the board confuses me.  If the RUSH soccer organization needs to schedule a city-wide tournament, that is not our goal; that is theirs.  I see no reason for me and my neighbors to pay for a city-wide competition sports complex.  Let's make sure our families have the facilities they need, so they can enroll their children in sports activities. Let's not try to be the best in sports facilities. Some might say, " we can have a significant income from this. Do you know that a sports complex potentially has $2 million revenue generating capability?"  For what? Are we talking a national or even state sports complex? That certainly is not regional. I don't know about you, but all the years I took my children to play sports (and it was not YMCA), we never stayed at a hotel. We went to tournaments, but they were not in Dallas, except perhaps one state playoff, a once in a year event having a very limited attendance. This is another chance to spend money for something on an inflated justification. The alternative? Find out how many fields we need to take care of our youth and plan capacity accordingly. For Lacrosse, it was said that we should see a 10% growth per year. How is that? Why? It is up to staff to sort this out.  Personally, I question the local presentations of facts and hope the staff looks at this issue very close before recommending anything outlandish.

Although I support having playing fields for lacrosse and soccer, we must be careful to define the problem we are trying to solve before we solve it. When are we going to learn to do things one logical step at a time and think about the community rather than generating revenue?

We need tax reductions. Don't continue to pile on debt for commercial purposes. Let private enterprise take that role. Take care of our families and their children. Let's have focus.

No comments: