GEORGETOWN, TX-Commercial development is coming to the Rivery tract in Georgetown, bringing with it big box retailers Home Depot and Super Wal-Mart and, eventually, apartments and more. The stores could open in fall 2003.

The Georgetown City Council has seemingly ended years of struggle over the Rivery site by approving a development agreement with Dallas-based Quorum Equities Group LLC. The agreement covers master planning, tree protection, internal roadways and driveways, park amenities, infrastructure, design and other issues. Quorum didn’t respond to calls from to talk about its Rivery Towne Crossing project.

The Rivery is a 212-acre site west of Interstate 35 and north of the San Gabriel River. Quorum controls 125 acres and the rest is owned by Rivery Partners, based in San Antonio.

The first phase of the Rivery project will be construction of major infrastructure elements such as roadways, George Russell, Georgetown’s city manager, tells Quorum plans to pull building permits in April 2002. Construction is expected to take about 18 months.

There are three contingencies that must be met before the project can get off the ground, according to Russell. One is permission from the Texas Department of Transportation to add a third lane to the access road for ingress and egress to a nearby neighborhood; a public hearing for a water quality pond; and placing an electric substation more than 500 feet from the neighborhood. He says none appear to deal breakers.

The Rivery land has been the object of development desire for two decades. In recent years, Power Computing Inc.’s plans to build its headquarters and manufacturing plant on the site fell through when the company sold out to Apple Computer Corp.

Georgetown council approved a concept plan in November 2000, but it took a year of on-again, off-again negotiations to get the development plan OK’d. Russell tells that it was just a matter of all the information coming together. “This was a real complicated project with traffic impact and a number of things along that line,” he says. After getting it all on the table and a lengthy discussion, he says “we were able to pull it all together.

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