Bridge City Planning Commision denies rezoning
Bridge City City Council took no action on the recommendation from the Planning and Zoning Commission to rezone property belonging to Chris and Lisa Durso on FM 1442.
After waiting nearly eight months and three council meetings for the change, Durso said, “I am shocked that it was turned down.”
Durso had requested that a strip of his property, 660 feet wide and 250 feet, be rezoned from single family residential to commercial. The proposal died when none of the members of the city council made a motion to proceed.
After the meeting Durso said, “They have devalued my property to zero. I may have to try to de-annex.”
Durso’s proposed use for the property is to establish a business called Treasure Hunt. The business would be a non-profit charity organization that would sell items on a resale basis. It would also be an Ebay outlet that would sell items on a commission.
“The proceeds would go to needy members of our community, primarily senior citizens that need help with things such as medical expenses. I know one lady who is on fixed income and has to have a part-time job just to pay for her medicine. This is the type person we want to help,” Durso said.
A building is on the property for use as the business but it is inside the 250-foot strip that is in the city limits. The property needs to be rezoned to commercial for the building to be used as it is. “I could move the building back past the 250 foot area and it would be on county property and I could open my business. It would cost $8,000 to do that and I only have $2,000 left in the budget,” Durso said.
“Across the highway the property was de-annexed and there is a business there. Next to me is a mobile home park that was positioned past the 250-foot mark. I am surrounded by commercial property,” he said.
Durso may operate a flea market beyond the city limits line in order to raise funds to move the building so that Treasure Hunt may open.
“We will not quit; we have the idea for a project that will assist senior citizens. I feel led by God to do this and I will pursue other ways to do what needs to be done. I have the best interest of Bridge City at heart and want to do something we can all be proud of,” Durso said.
As of now, Durso is getting advice on obtaining the 501 (c) 3 tax-exempt status, and soliciting people to serve as a board of directors and also getting legal advice.
If he is successful with the business, he hopes that it could be run with the assistance of churches and other civic organizations. Durso said, “I already have scouts in the community to target needy people.”
“My property cannot be used as residential because it has pipelines on it, but is could be used for this project if it had been rezoned for commercial use. I guess I will just have to move the building back if I can raise the money,” he said.