Wharton, nor a town around it, has a Bloomingdales. Have you noticed? You can search high and low, too, for a Disney theme park, and you won't find that, either.
However, Wharton, does have the potential for growth in travel and business. Really! That is due to its unique rural character, business climate, and transportation access. It won't get a Bloomingdales or a theme park any time soon, but it is likely to get more economic activity, jobs, rooftops and visitors.
We are flat as a pancake. And we have this Colorado River as unpredictable as me trying to cook a pancake worth eating.
Covid has not helped. But the long-time threat has always been the natural barriers to development. Some 40 percent of Wharton is flood prone. And the floods are just gaining in frequency.
It means that anyone who wants to build or improve property may have to raise the foundation level costing lots of money. Some $1 million was spent to raise the land for Buc-ee's, for instance.
This $72 million flood reduction project, which has been in the works for more than two decades, will change all that. When it is done, it will reduce residential and business construction prices with a real impact, and it will open the city to business and residential development and quality of life improvements.
The extension of FM 1301 is also a game changer. Some 17,000 vehicles per day pass through 1301 in Wharton; just imagine what will happen when 1301 reaches U.S. 59, which carries 30,000 vehicles per day. We will be much more connected to the traveling public and ourselves.
Critics may blast away, but a change in people's thinking will have to occur.
This quote comes to mind: "Players win games, but teams win championships."