PHOTO #1: Mayor Jeff Bauknight delivers his State of the City address during the Victoria Chamber of Commerce luncheon Oct. 11 at the Victoria Community Center.
PHOTO #2: Mayor Jeff Bauknight explains the City’s history of capital improvement project funding as part of his State of the City address during the Victoria Chamber of Commerce luncheon Oct. 11 at the Victoria Community Center.
The City of Victoria is in the midst of several ambitious projects designed to meet a variety of needs, including public safety, commerce, housing, street repairs and overall community development.
Mayor Jeff Bauknight provided updates on many of these initiatives during his State of the City address Oct. 11 at the Victoria Community Center.
Projects that the mayor highlighted include:
- Victoria Fire Department Station One: The renovation of Station One was completed in September and includes roof repairs, better structural support for storm resiliency, individual sleeping quarters and other improvements.
- Affordable housing for seniors: With help from City Council, two developers have secured state tax credit allocations to build affordable apartment complexes for seniors. The FishPond at Victoria, 2513 N. Navarro St., is scheduled to open in late 2024, and The Victorian, 901 John Stockbauer Drive, is scheduled to open in early 2025.
- Riverside Bark: The new dog park is on track to be completed this year. Crews will soon add signage at the entrance of the dog park, along with a plaque honoring Izzy Drane, the local Girl Scout who helped make this project a reality.
- The duck pond: The Riverside Park duck pond is also scheduled for completion this year. The new design includes a spacious gazebo overlook and a new fishing pier.
- Ben Wilson Corridor Improvement Project: Construction on the Ben Wilson corridor is expected to wrap up in early 2024. The project, which has been in the works since 2015, will improve the look and feel of the University of Houston-Victoria campus.
- De Leon Plaza Expansion Project: Crews are rapidly laying the foundation for the expanded area of De Leon Plaza on Forrest Street. The newly expanded area will include restrooms, a performance pavilion and a decorative water fountain. Construction will finish ahead of Victoria’s key bicentennial event in April.
- Laurent Street underpass mural: This public art project will give Laurent Street a splash of color to celebrate Victoria’s heritage and identity. Painting is expected to begin soon.
- Public safety headquarters: The new headquarters at Main Street and Airline Road will bring together police, fire administration and court services under one roof to support the next 20-30 years of projected growth in Victoria. The City will break ground on this project in early 2024 and finish in 2025.
The mayor also noted that the City is continuing its trend of increased investment in street and utility repairs. In fiscal year 2024, the City will spend $11.75 on utility repairs and $34.02 million on residential and thoroughfare street repairs.
Finally, the mayor outlined plans for next year’s bicentennial celebration. The City is working with local partners to plan events throughout the year, with the bicentennial date—April 13, 2024—serving as the capstone for the yearlong celebration. More information can be found at www.victoriatx200.com.
The State of the City address will be broadcast on the city’s government cable channels, TV15 (channels 15 and 115, and online at www.victoriatx.gov/tv15). To learn more about TV15 and other ways to stay connected with the City, visit www.victoriatx.gov/newsroom.
View more photos from the event