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The Lead Dec. 15, 2021: The myth of the Sidney Baker Bridge is addressed; more Christmas lights on the list

No the city is not going to narrow the Sidney Baker Bridge.


We are 10 days out! Who is ready? We're ready. We headed out again last night to see Christmas lights, and we saw some great examples in the Oakview and Skyview neighborhoods of Kerrville and Ingram. We also saw one of our favorites at 328 Skyview in Ingram.

Visit our map to see the homes:


We welcome Tom Jones of the Christian Men's Job Corps, who will discuss the life-changing work the organization is doing in the Hill Country. The show starts at 9 a.m.


If you missed Tuesday's show, let's just say it was a lot of fun. We had Tome O'Hern and Natalee Peppitt as guests and talked about their downtown businesses. We also hosted our first fashion show featuring the fashions of Gold Cup Live and Tome Boutique.

You can watch the show here:


There seems to be a popular conspiracy theory that the Kerrville City Council will narrow the lanes on the Sidney Baker Street bridge over the Guadalupe River and Louise Hayes Park, but that is at best — wishful thinking.

During a Tuesday afternoon presentation, Kerrville Public Works Director Stuart Barron said any changes to the Sidney Baker Bridge would have to come from the Texas Department of Transportation, but narrowing the bridge to accommodate pedestrians is not considered.

Instead, Barron said TxDOT is improving five intersections in Kerrville by adding steel poles or masts and removing the wired approach to traffic signals that infest most of Kerrville. City Manager E.A. Hoppe said the improvements are worth more than $1.5 million.

The bridge issue is a consistent talking point among speakers at City Council meetings. Mayor Bill Blackburn said he got a call from a resident who said those who drive over the bridge are "true residents" of Kerrville.

Yeah, because anyone walking along the bridge understands that some of those "true residents" are likely to run you down. Blackburn, however, said pedestrian safety is a real concern and will have to be addressed in the future, but just not now.

An initial concern about Lennar selling out quickly

The private-public partnership between Kerrville and homebuilder Lennar has one drawback — market forces. During the 4 p.m. work-study session, City Councilwoman Kim Clarkson raised concerns about Lennar's process for marketing its new housing development — exposing one of the problems with the project. That problem rests with no limit on how many homes an investor can purchase. While the homes are expected to be priced under $300,000, which was part of the agreement between the city and the homebuilder, there's no prohibition on investors snapping the approximately 125 homes up. Clarkson, along with fellow Councilwoman Brenda Hughes, asked how quickly the homebuilder would provide opportunities to reserve homes. At least from city staff, that question is still to be answered.

So, what else did the City Council decide:

  • They unanimously agreed to raise the fees developers must pay for parks. The move raises the fee from $250 to $700 in the first year, but it will move to $1,275 per property by 2025.
  • The Council unanimously appointed Kevin Bernhard, Abram Bueche and Jeff Harris to the planning and zoning commission.


If you care about Kerrville's parks, you may want to stop by the Dietert Center today at 5:15 p.m. The Kerrville Parks and Recreation Department is holding a listening session on a planned update to its master plan.

"Our current master plan is from 2008 and its time for an update," said Ashlea Boyle, director of Parks and Recreation. "We'd like to invite the community to participate in this process and provide feedback on our parks system, priorities, and potential future projects."

The meeting will be at 5:15 p.m., Dec. 15, at the Dietert Center, 451 Guadalupe St. in Kerrville.


Photographer Bella Shearhart found Santa Claus and staged a photoshoot at the Kerr County Courthouse.


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