The developers of the proposed high-rise development near River Grove Park launched a new web site today, TheHeronsKingwood.com. In it, they make many new claims designed to put the public’s concerns to rest. It had the opposite effect on me. Why?
- They told the Corps the Marina would hold 640 boats. It’s 160 boats larger now. The website video states 800.
- The Army Corps thinks the development is 331 acres. The website claims 364.
- After telling community leaders they would hold a public meeting before the close of the comment period, they now say after.
- After previously touting their connections to an Italian architectural firm, Torrisi and Procopio (which I suspected was a fake site), they now say Skidmore Owings and Merrill (SOM) developed the design. But SOM in San Francisco referred me to their legal department, which did not take my calls. The Italian site was developed in English and registered in Aruba by a Canadian Company.
- They now claim that a subsidiary of Romerica Investments, the Romerica Group, will develop the project. They claim Romerica Group has existed since 2007 and is located in Houston. The Texas Secretary of State has no listing for Romerica Group. Neither do Florida, Delaware or Alberta, Canada – other known locations where the developers have incorporated. The phone number listed on the Romerica Group website is disconnected. The office was unoccupied last time I checked several weeks ago.
- “Romerica Group” does not appear on any of the permit applications associated with this project at the Army Corps, City of Houston or Harris County Flood Control.
- Romerica Investments does not own the property being permitted.
- They claim that 25-story condominium towers are single family homes. That’s the world’s largest family!
- They say that only the northern half of the development is subject to height restrictions without offering any proof that “single-family residential” deed restrictions have been removed from the southern half.
- They claim they’re creating a connection to Hamblin Road (sic), which the Corps Public Notice does not mention and no one in Forest Cove seems to know about.
- They claim that “Both the city and county have approved construction and permits have been issued, they have determined that the community will not have an adverse effect on surrounding communities.” This makes it sound like they have been given permits for the entire development. Not true. Neither is the second half of the statement. Developers requested a permit to start excavating the marina. They promised they would haul excavated material offsite. However, things changed by the time the Corps issued its public notice. The public notice states that they will use the fill to raise the elevation 12 feet. Hmmm. Sounds like cause to revoke those permits to me!
- They again claim that raising elevations to 57 feet will make the buildings flood safe when the area has flooded over 57 feet at least six times in the last 25 years.
- They call roads an alternative mode of transportation!
- They think ExxonMobil is spelled Exxon Mobile.
But the best part is this! Read the disclaimer. It’s the most self-generous disclaimer in the history of words. Nobody is responsible for anything the site says. Make sure you read the fine print.
As always, this post represents my opinions on matters of public policy. They are protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution and the Anti-SLAPP Statute of the Great State of Texas.
Posted by Bob Rehak on February 12, 2019
532 Days since Hurricane Harvey