TEMPLE, TX — There’s no doubt the city of Temple is growing, both in population and economically.
But a family whose roots in Temple date back to the early 1900s aren’t so happy about the plans to expand.
There’s a special beauty in being able to count each person that lives on your road on just one hand while knowing each of them personally.
”She and Mr. Johnson lived there since I was a kid, we knew them, they were our good friends and neighbors,” Karla Hedrick, a resident on Mouser Road said. “And she had that choice taken away from her.”
Selling her “forever home,” as Neil Elliot called it, to the city after breaking ground on its expansion near Dodgen Loop.
”I just felt like we were left out of the loop with the city. Being a current resident, we had no idea this was even in the plans from the get-go and evidently they started the plans over a year ago.”
The comprehensive plan, that is.
Temple’s new decade-long proposal of how to accommodate the city’s growing population and economic opportunities.
“This has been in the works for years and that’s just indicative of the way that Temple’s been growing and the way that Temple has changed and how city leadership has really worked to ensure they’re really managing that growth,” Emily Parks, the public relations manager for the city said.
“That they’re aware of what’s coming and then also paying attention to where we’ve come from.”
It’s all a part of the city’s strategic plan.
Driven by public interest, officials say the city held over 20 public workshops.
“We really made a strong effort to ensure that we were hearing all of those voices and finding a way to not only maintain our heritage and our history in this, but also help Temple grow and develop and then redevelop,” Parks claimed.
Some residents said the city is taking the right steps to ensure positive growth. But the ones who have been here for generations feel differently.
“For us, it’s just devastating,” Hedrick said. “For the city? Sure, there’s so many more families that can move in and business opportunities, but there is also unincorporated lands that are not what someone’s making their living from.”
The plan paints a picture of an updated Temple, one with additional housing, highway extensions and more businesses.