Mission residents get glimpse of Gateway plans for Johnson Drive and Roe Avenue


Mission Gateway developer Tom Valenti of the Cameron Group in New York speaks with a city council member at the first open house to explain the development agreement this morning at Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center.

A little more than a dozen people showed up Monday morning and a substantially larger crowd Monday evening for the first two of three public open house sessions the city of Mission is holding to explain the development plan for the east Gateway project.

The city has reached a development deal for the site calling for $30 million in public bond support that will be paid back by taxes generated at the project, according to city administrator Mike Scanlon. The $30 million has been the amount under consideration by the city for the last few months. What is still under discussion, Scanlon said, is Walmart’s participation in the Community Improvement District at the Gateway.

Originally, Walmart had refused to participate in the CID because it believed the extra one percent sales tax levied on transactions would place it at a competitive disadvantage with Target. However, if Walmart joins the CID, the additional sales tax needed to provide the same revenue stream to pay bonds could be lowered by as much as a half-cent. That element of the agreement is still being negotiated. A method to direct some funding toward downtown revitalization also is still under discussion. The city is expecting to gain $21.5 million in cumulative revenue over a 10-year period from a variety of tax sources associated with the Gateway, including new revenue not needed for bond service and the application of the 3/8 cent pool tax to Gateway transactions.

The open houses continue 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center. City officials, developer Tom Valenti, and the city’s financial adviser are available to answer questions. Renderings of the development and graphics explaining the financial plan are on display.

The development contains the Walmart, a grocery, health club, a number of restaurants as well as other retail tenants. It also has 300 residential units and 2,291 parking stalls in a multi-story structure.

The public is invited to come and go anytime during the two-hour period of the open house sessions. A council vote on the proposal is expected Nov. 27.