Fort Worth Stockyards TIF could generate $40 million for public improvements

By Scott Nishimura

A proposed Fort Worth Stockyards tax increment finance district would generate about $40 million over its 20-year life to pay for public improvements that promote development in the zone, the city staff estimated in a report Friday.

The report to Mayor Betsy Price and City Council members estimated $385 million in development will occur in the district, including as much as $185 million from a planned redevelopment in the Historic Stockyards by a partnership of Majestic Realty and Fort Worth’s Hickman family.

The TIF creation and Majestic-Hickman project are expected to spur another $200 million in private investment over 20 years in the district, the staff estimated.

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The $40 million estimate assumes that the city, Tarrant County, Tarrant Regional Water District, and Tarrant County College District participate in the TIF and contribute 50 percent of their tax increment – the property taxes generated by additional value created in the district over the 2014 base year.

The report, the staff’s preliminary project and financing plan for the proposed TIF, is the next step in the expected creation of the tax increment district. The city met in September with stakeholders in a public meeting to launch the discussion.

The staff will reach a final plan with the taxing entities and present it publicly to the City Council in November. In December, the council will vote on an ordinance to create the TIF district, create and appoint a board, set the expected 20-year duration of the TIF, establish the city’s participation rate, and establish a TIF fund.

City staff has said it will recommend participating in the TIF at 50 percent of its projected tax increment, and is asking the other taxing entities to do the same.

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Once the new board meets and adopts the project and finance plan, the City Council will vote on accepting the plan and begin the process of securing agreements from the other taxing entitites. Final approval of the plan and agreements with the other entities are expected in the first quarter next year, the staff report said.

The TIF district would be 925 acres, according to the staff report. That’s substantially larger than the 680 acres the staff estimated at the September meeting.

It would generally be bounded by Northwest 30th Street on the northernmost boundary, Interstate Highway 35 on the easternmost boundary, North Grand Avenue on the southernmost boundary, and Clinton Avenue on the westernmost boundary. The area includes major intersections at North Main and 28th streets and North Main and Northside Drive, and it includes the Historic Fort Worth Stockyards district.

Projects that would qualify to receive tax increment district funding include ones that create jobs, adaptive reuse, transit-oriented development, streetscape improvements, redevelopment along major commercial corridors, historic preservation or restoration, transportation improvements, mixed-income housing, public amenities, and pedestrian linkages.

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Expected TIF projects, according to the staff report: Road and access improvements, $15 million; public infrastructure, $15 million; streetscape and pedestrian improvements, $3.5 million; public parking infrastructure, $3.5 million; public amenities, $2.5 million; and administrative expenses, $500,000.