Developers get another year to work on plans for Port Neches riverfront

Published 10:07 am Saturday, August 12, 2017

PORT NECHES — Two developers have an additional 12 months to hone their plan for a portion of riverfront property in Port Neches.

Former Nederland residents Tom Frasier and Mike Bolin were granted the extra year to work on their plan during a recent Port Neches city council meeting.

“It’s a passion for me,” Bolin said outside council chambers after the vote was taken. “And being from this area, I want something very nice that people can enjoy that will be good for the area.”

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Bolin and Frasier are looking to bring mixed-use retail to the riverfront, including a restaurant and mixed local and some regional businesses, Bolin said.

City manager Andrè Wimer told council that Bolin and Frasier have been diligently moving forward on the project and have been in contact with the city.

The two businessmen expressed interest in the 51-plus acres of land near Port Neches Riverfront Park in 2015. At that time they signed a Letter of Understanding, which established a 180-day period in which the city agreed to not discuss the sale or conveyance of the property with other parties.

A 12-month extension was granted to allow the duo due diligence on the project and a previous LOU was set to expire Aug. 18, 2017. With the recent action by council, they now have until 2018.

Council also formally approved the creation of the Port Neches Improvement District setting the first meeting date for 3 p.m. Aug. 16.

The district was created to bring needed infrastructure to develop the riverfront property, including public water, sewer, drainage, roads, bulkheads and other needed infrastructure. The city previously acquired and remediated the property with the intent of development as a means of tax diversification.