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Big revitalization plans have been underway for several years in Ennis, TX. But just last week, the City Commission approved a 5-year community improvement plan. And it’s pretty impressive. The recent 5-year timeline and official release have outlined the most prominent and active building projects to redefine Ennis even further:

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Minnie McDowal Park

  • Performance gazebo, climbing sculptures, Wi-Fi, art-wall, water feature, seating and public restrooms
  • Will be activated several nights a week with live music, open mic nights, movies etc.
  • Location of the Plaza Theatre owned by Lee Roy Mitchell who went on to start Cinemark
  • The park is named after the theatre’s longest standing and most beloved employee, Minnie McDowal
  • Grand opening ceremony Saturday, September 16th.

Welcome Center

Rendering courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • One and a half story Welcome Center in the heart of downtown
  • Will house the welcome center, EcDev team, City Inspection Team, Chamber of Commerce, event space with rooftop patio, 4 retail incubators and restaurant
  • Currently working with Architexas on floor plan

Fire Station 3

  • New Fire Station to house the additional firefighters acquired through the SAFER grant
  • Will reduce response time to northern and westward areas of our city
  • Will enhance ISO/PPC ratings (lower ISO rating for the City typically yields lower insurance premiums
  • Fire Station 1 will be a separate project to be completed in 2021

North Plaza

Rendering courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • Provides public gathering space with amphitheater and water feature
  • Home to the new City Hall, Municipal Court and Police Station
  • In final discussions with private investor

Downtown Infrastructure/Dallas St.

Rendering courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • Replacement of 100-year-old water and sewer and installing grease traps to create the foundation to support the new retail/residential growth and development
  • Dallas St. will be converted into a scenic boulevard which connects the two sides of downtown
  • Tree-lined, beautiful red brickwork, flower planters, widened sidewalks
  • Additional infrastructure projects include street improvements, wastewater treatment improvements and more

South Plaza

Rendering courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • Provides public gathering space with large gazebo
  • Residential on the second story and retail/dining on ground level

Splash Pads

Image courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • Splash pads and associated features at Jaycee and Lions Park
  • 6 additional park projects include equipment replacement, bathroom facilities, ballpark improvements and more

Downtown Underpass

Rendering courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • Aesthetically-pleasing trestle bridge on Ennis Avenue that will allow the train to pass overhead, relieving road congestion and also creating a landmark in Ennis
  • Connects IH45 Market to Downtown Market
  • Currently in engineering

Replacement Airport

Image courtesy of City of Ennis.

  • New airport to replace existing 1964 airport
  • Will yield new opportunities and can also generate revenue from a variety of sources (e.g hanger leases, fuel sales and events).

Other Projects and Programs

  • Rebranding
    • Working with Chandler Thinks, a very reputable destination branding agency out of Tennessee, to rebrand the city
    • Conducting focus groups, 30 key stakeholder interviews and full tour of Ennis
    • Brand story, logo, tagline, brand guidelines and brand launch video
    • The new brand reveal will help us attract visitors, investors, new residents and will give current residents a proud story to stand behind/promote
  • Residential
    • Two full market rate AA & AAA quality apartments are in progress
    • Single family residential permits have tripled over the last few years
  • Retail
    • Starbucks and Chipotle recently completed
    • Arby’s, Popeyes, Steak and Shake and other confidential retailer coming in 2017-18
  • Grant Program
    • Very successful Historic Preservation Grant and Façade Grant program implemented downtown
    • Investment is $2.2MM public and over $10MM private

Jordan Jarrett

Jordan is the digital manager at Local Profile. She creates digital, print and social content. Her passion is profiling people and their experiences, connecting community through authentic narrative.