The news around City Hall this spring will be filled with elections, and who will take over the open Council seats; water, and where we have to go to get it in the future; electricity, and how it will play a role in our air quality in the years to come; the homeless, and their future downtown; Super Bowl 2011, and what it may mean to the Dallas economy; the first Santiago Calatrava Bridge over the Trinity, which will start construction soon; and the 2007-08 budget, which will be hashed out to a point that the new Council will have tweaking rights in August.

In Lake Highlands, Wal-Mart is due to break ground on the LBJ/Abrams site; Prescott Realty should be ready to announce its plans for the town center project by late April or early May (the company believes environmental problems are solvable); the Tom Thumb Center next to Plaza Rios has been purchased by new owners who plan to remodel the entire complex; a new "for sale" townhouse project is being developed on Audelia north of Walnut; new developers with mixed-use plans are looking at Audelia and Walnut Hill, Shoreview at Ferndale, Forest Lane at Central Expressway, and Greenville Avenue north of Forest Lane; and redevelopment on Northwest Highway at Plano remains in limbo, as does the Crow project at Northwest Highway and Skillman. The T.I.F. board is named, approved, and ready to work with any developer interested in improving the quality of life in Lake Highlands.

What I am pleased to report is that many improvement projects in your city and immediate neighborhood are alive and well. The winter has been cold and filled with questions and concerns. The spring is going to prove to be a time of progress. I am sure that new leadership will bring out the best for our beloved Lake Highlands. Stay involved. Be wary of suspect projects, but don’t be afraid of urban changes, because they can bring new life to our community when done properly. Finally, take care not to let rumors become the way Lake Highlands communicates when one simple phone call to the Council office will get a direct answer.

Be sure to support the spring activities at Lake Highlands and Berkner high schools. The soccer, tennis, golf, track, softball and baseball teams will greatly appreciate the whole community’s support. So will all the musicals and senior festivities. We are so fortunate to have great programs for our kids. Let’s say thanks by attending an event every time we get the chance. The kids notice, and so do those that make the events possible.

I end as usual — thank you, Lake Highlands, for allowing me the opportunity to represent your interests downtown. It is now, and always will be, a great honor.