Following additional discussion, the Mineral Wells city council authorized staff to continue negotiations and finalize an agreement for the development of the regional airport Tuesday night.
On March 2, the council heard a presentation from the Paslay Management Group about providing planning and development services for the Mineral Wells Regional Airport.
A couple of items touched on at Tuesday’s meeting related to if an environmental issue was discovered and the access corridor.
“One of the things that was brought up was concern that in the event an environmental problem was discovered out there that nobody knows about at this point, the city would be obligated to have to spend a bunch of money to clean that up,” MW City Manager Randy Criswell said.
PMG Principal John Terrell said they too do not want to be held responsible for environmental issues unless it was somehow created by the company itself.
“As long as the contract keeps us out of harm's way in any environmental that is found,” Terrell said. “If it proves that the cost to remediate something exceeds the cost that any development would bring, I think we’re on the same page that we would want to take that property out of the project.”
Terrell said the intent of PMG is to develop an economic corridor between the airport and the city of Mineral Wells and tie the two together. He added that the Garrett Morris Parkway, which runs from U.S. 180 to MH 239, would be a good access corridor.
“It’s trying to connect the airport with a business corridor and economic engine that connects into downtown,” he said. “That is part of our initial consultancy — not only to look at that but devise on what corridor that would be and what kind of businesses would be located along that corridor.”
Mineral Wells Ward 4 Councilmember Doyle Light suggested PMG look at all potential access corridors, not just Garrett Morris Parkway.
“There are some other connectors that I’m excited for you guys to be able to look at and be a part of to connect the community through multiple corridors, not just Garrett Morris,” he said. “The majority of [Farm-to-Market Road] 1195 from the airport up into town is not in the city, but it is in our ETJ and anything that goes out there we’re going to derive some benefit from.”
PMG will utilize existing tenants, like Genesys Aerosystems, to market the airport and work hand-in-hand with those companies to grow the area.
“We don’t make any money unless we continue development, so if we’re going to be making all that investment, we have to be developing,” Terrell said.
Light said what PMG is planning to bring to the Mineral Wells airport in support of their vision of the community is almost inexplicable.
"You guys deal with major, huge airports and the interest you're showing to develop this little regional airport is just mind-boggling to me and I am thrilled to be in your company," he said.
The council unanimously approved staff to finalize the agreement and authorize execution by the mayor once complete.