Important Meetings and Events
Comments or Questions? Use this Contact form. I send out eblasts about once a month and would be happy to add you to the list. Thanks!
Residents can attend most meetings in person or via U-verse Channel 99, Comcast Channel 16, or on the City’s Facebook page
100 Years of Bellaire History!
October 28, 2022: Sadly we lost Lynn McBee in 2022. Her volunteerism. historical perspective on city administrations, and her skill in maintaining a written record of Bellaire’s history will be missed.
Click on the Trolley to view the Table of Contents for Lynn’s history of Bellaire. Great information on your Home Town!
I couldn’t resist a photo of one of Bellaire’s manhole covers.
And for a terrific photo history check this out: www.bellairebook.com
Problems with stray cats? If you are in Bellaire borrow a live trap from the BPD. Check with SNAP for low-cost spay or neuter https://www.snapus.org/houston/. Friends for Life https://friends4life.org/programs-and-events/fixhouston/ HOPE https://www.homelesspets.net/feral-cats/TNR Houston site: https://www.houstontx.gov/barc/trap_neuter_return.html and PLEASE CONSIDER DONATING TO THESE ORGANIZATIONS.
New Bellaire High – Completion in 2022
Construction on the new Bellaire High school is complete. The original building was demolished during the week of July 13-17, 2021. Find more information here.
The new school was financed by the 2012 HISD bond election and completion is expected in 2022.
Recycling, organic gardening, less pesticides – all win/wins for our kids and our community. So are reusable bags!
Find informative articles here.
Left Overs From the 2016 Bond Issue
Spruce and Fifth Streets – Now the subject of a lawsuit, the $3.2 million in contracts for this project called for completion by February 15, 2020. A drive through the area feels as though you’re in a rundown fun house. Here’s some background on this project.
No More City Of Homes?
According to the City manager and staff our longtime City logo, representing Bellaire as a City of Homes, will soon be gone, thanks to City Council and the $50,000 branding study. Read more here.
Author Archives: Jane McNeel
City Council held a workshop on Monday, November 21, 2022, regarding the proposed new dog pound. Find the meeting here. Find the presentation for a new pound by Bellaire Chief of Police Lopez here. I encourage every Bellaire resident to … Continue reading
Bellaire City Council approved the final numbers for the 2023 City budget on September 19, 2022. First up was a vote to retain the current property tax rate of $ .4473, approved by 7-0. A hearing on the tax rate … Continue reading
UPDATE: Because a unanimous decision was required to approve the requests the four appeals were voted down, though several members of the Board of Adjustment voted in favor of some of the requests even though they violated our zoning ordinances. … Continue reading
On September 8, 2022, members of the Planning and Zoning Commission were treated to a conceptual presentation for a Planned Development, a medical office building on the old Randalls grocery store site. At right are three options proposed by Page … Continue reading
An article in the Houston Chronicle reports that a re-design is planned for the Bellaire Triangle. The center’s longtime owners, MC Management & Development, plan extensive renovations including the addition of an open-air space for outdoor events. There’s no word … Continue reading
City Council – July 18 2022 Presentation of the proposed annual budget for the City of Bellaire, Texas, for the fiscal year commencing on October 1, 2022, and ending on September 30, 2023 – Submitted by Deacon Tittel, Interim City Manager. A … Continue reading
Harris County Flood Control District is proposing a system of large diameter tunnels, 80 to100 feet underground and 30 to 45 feet in diameter, to carry flood waters to Buffalo Bayou and the Ship Channel. The suggested location for these … Continue reading
From the Mayor’s recent article, Council has hired a new City Manager: “Following a nationwide search that attracted candidates from far and wide, we ended up finding our next City Manager just a few blocks away. A resident of Braeswood … Continue reading
With her children at her side, Kathleen Ballanfant, longtime resident and the publisher of the Southwest News and the Village News, passed away on Friday, June 24, 2022. Kathy has been a a prominent member of the community and a … Continue reading
Budget talks have begun, the City’s fiscal year begins October 1st. The City Manager position has been in play for some time, hopefully we’ll have a new, highly qualified City Manager soon. Meanwhile Council is currently mulling over a number … Continue reading
UPDATE: Portions of recently completed 5100-5200 Spruce are once again being demolished and reconstructed due to improper installation of electrical conduit and irrigation lines. Ponding and poor drainage are also problems. The good news is that the cost is on … Continue reading
Apparently some of our zoning ordinances aren’t in line the the Comprehensive Plan, and the Planning and Zoning Commission is tasked with review of those “inconsistencies”. Although the Comp Plan is just that, a plan, and one that is constantly … Continue reading
Councilmember Gordon made a compelling presentation on flood mitigation in Bellaire at the recent Council meeting, which in turn sparked a lively and informative discussion on past floods and future possibilities. Find the PowerPoint Presentation here and a link to … Continue reading
UPDATE 3/30/2022: The last meeting on these PD applications, styled as Bellaire Place, was held on March 21, 2022, when a portion of the PDs was approved. Here’s a link to that meeting. After a Public Hearing in January and … Continue reading
UPDATE 4/18/2022: The application was approved by a 5-0 vote from P&Z. The application will now move to City Council. Find a Summary below from the Agenda for a hearing for a new food establishment at 5201 Bellaire Blvd. Several … Continue reading
UPDATE: At the P&Z meeting on February 10, 2022, the commission members discussed the current residential zoning and the apparent intent by the owners or the real estate agents to market the Church property as commercial. They requested that City … Continue reading
In the last 6 months of 2021 numerous mid-level and high-level employees left the City of Bellaire’s employ. A recent claim of the Mayor and his candidates in the 2021 City election was that City employees are unhappy and leaving … Continue reading
The election for Mayor and three members of City Council is over. A slate of candidates has been elected: Winfred Frazier, Ross Gordon, and Brian Witt, who ran as a slate and were supported by the Mayor, who ran unoppposed. … Continue reading
Update 11/24/2021: P&Z essentially approved the three applications at the November 18th meeting, with an agreement to add some clarifications or conditions. The Chairman will draft a written agreement for approval. Once the P&Z process is complete the applications will … Continue reading
UPDATE: The City of Bellaire Budget FY2022 was adopted on September 20, 2021. Interpreting the budget doesn’t get any easier. Please take some time to review these pertinent items. Better yet, grab a cup of coffee and review the Adopted … Continue reading
UPDATE 8/3/2021: A vote on the agenda item was postponed after it became apparent that only Councilmembers Lewis and Hotze felt the ordinance was justified at this time. Towards the end of the meeting Bellaire’s City Attorney, Alan Petrov, confirmed … Continue reading
UPDATE May 25, 2021: The new zoning ordinance was approved by a 4 to 3 vote on May 24, 2021. The May 3, 2021, the City Council meeting ended after almost 5-1/2 hours. The proposed language for the new zoning … Continue reading
UPDATE May 25, 2021: The new zoning ordinance was approved by City Council on a 4 to 3 vote on May 24, 2021. UPDATE 5/5/2021: After another 5 hour marathon session on May 3rd, this matter has been postponed. A … Continue reading
In May of 2021 the Bellaire City Library will celebrate 70 years of service to Bellaire residents. In January of 1951 a committee was named from the Bellaire Women’s Civic Club for the formation of a Bellaire Library. The Friends … Continue reading
The City of Bellaire has reached an agreement with the developers of Southside Commons regarding the parking lot illegally permitted and built on the CenterPoint property at the entrance to the City. The lot will be removed by our Public … Continue reading
The City distributed this information on the lack of City water on February 17, 2021. Frozen pipes were not the main problem, and this information was helpful: We are aware that there has been a lot of confusion regarding the … Continue reading
What Happened To Our Building Officials? Update 6/10/2021: The City has hired a new building official,building official, and plans examiner. Development Services should be fully staffed. For some reason the City of Bellaire has chosen not to hire, or even … Continue reading
Is Bellaire Ready For The Cost, Uncertainty Of Turning Over Wastewater Treatment To Houston And Demolition Of Our Wastewater Treatment Plant?
UPDATE 1/25/2021: Updates On Current Events UPDATE 10/21/2020: City Council voted 5-2 to approve a 1% match in the $65 million dollar CDBG-MIT grant application at the October 19, 2020, meeting. The application includes the demolition of our wastewater treatment … Continue reading
This is from the Mayor’s blog, 11/10/2020. A modified design and 20 conditions:
The action never stops, no wonder we ordinary Bellaire citizens can’t keep up! Read this post item by item, or drop down to your area of interest. All of this affects our future.
UPDATE 11/8/2022: O’Reilly Auto Parts will have a new building in the same location on Spruce, described as a redevelopment project. To accommodate the current zoning the store will face east (the old storefront faced south). The building will be one-story … Continue reading
UPDATE 9/4/2020: A Public Hearing was held on Thursday, August 13, 2020, before the Planning and Zoning Commission, for the parking lot at 4300 Bellaire Blvd. I counted twenty speakers opposed the zoning request, no one spoke in favor. The … Continue reading
Bellaire’s Municipal budgets are dry and hard to digest. Lots of verbiage, numbers, graphs, etc. It’s understandable that most residents don’t spend time reviewing them, and so may have missed the $6 million dollar Dog Pound that was added to … Continue reading
UPDATE 11/11/22020: Council has approved the 2-field plan but with numerous conditions. Find those conditions and the new layout here. UPDATE: The public hearing by City Council for this application has been postponed to sometime in August 2020 or whenever … Continue reading
Public Comments at the July 6, 2020, Council meeting included a call from Raquel Boujourne, the owner and president of A Status Construction LLC, the contractor responsible for the Spruce/Fifth project. Ms. Boujourne stated that her company has been blamed … Continue reading
City of Bellaire Economics in 2020 – A New Paradigm The economic damage from the current health crisis is alarming, and the City of Bellaire anticipates a decrease in revenues FY2020. At the April 6, 2020, City Council meeting Council … Continue reading
February 17, 2020 Dear Mayor Friedberg and members of City Council, The City Manager’s weekly memo of 2/14/20 … Continue reading
The January 27, 2020, council meeting, the second of the year, was eventful – and long. After discussing and approving various ordinances, some passing after minor tweaks, the meeting moved on to Items for Consideration.
In a recent weekly memo on 1/10/2020 Bellaire City Manager Paul Hofmann explained that last Fall it was discovered that the surety bonds provided by A Status Construction, LLC for three (3) City bond projects, totaling over $6.5 million dollars, … Continue reading
On January 30, 2019, Bellaire’s City engineer James Andrews of ARKK Engineers recommended a company new to Bellaire, A Status Construction, LLC, as qualified to run several construction projects funded by the 2016 bond issue, including the $2.5 million Spruce/Fifth … Continue reading
It’s time for some thoughtful reflection on our recent City Council elections. I believe the election results revealed that our Mayor and recent Council members had lost the trust of both residents and local businesses while following the lead of … Continue reading
UPDATE 12/31/2019: Notice of public hearings on January 9, 2020, for applications from HISD for revisions to the proposed sports fields at the old Gordon Elementary site on Bissonnet and from Cushman & Wakefield, on behalf of Southwestern Bell Telephone … Continue reading
UPDATE 12/14/2019: The results of the Bellaire Runoff Election are in. The new City Council members are Nathan Wesely for Position 4 and Jim Hotze for Position 6, joining Catherine Lewis on City Council in January, 2020. Here’s the Agenda.
Scan the most recent posts on this site. You’ll find articles on developer requests to rezone numerous Bellaire properties. Not requests to construct developments that comply with current zoning, but to change it. These developers want more, in essence to … Continue reading
UPDATE 12/17/19: No decisions at 12/12/19 on SLS Properties, 4900 Fournace. The next step is the meeting in January, 2020. Environmental issues are still a high priority with residents, as well as the scale of the proposed development. Click for … Continue reading
UPDATE: March, 2020 – Still no actual list of responses to reference checks from the City of Bellaire. A logical deduction: perhaps none were made, no one was contacted, or perhaps the responses were not positive. An Open Letter to … Continue reading
Is anyone else curious about the disparity between the proposal to purchase a new EMS ambulance for $280,000, and the fact that Bellaire leases other City vehicles instead of purchasing them?
Two Bellaire residents spoke at the City Council meeting on Monday, October 21, 2019, expressing their concern about a new residential construction in their area that is elevated about 10 to 12 feet off the ground. See the photo at … Continue reading
My Comments at City Council on September 16, 2019: Good Evening, Mayor and City Council, I realize that you would prefer that we simply support you in your approval of this budget. That we hand you and the City Manager … Continue reading
Have you received notification of the free Aquahawk Alerting system? Dealt with a water leak not far from your new water meter? Do you even know that you have a new water meter? Or what an Aquahawk is?
“The plan takes care of “the basics” by repeatedly reinforcing the fundamental importance of neighborhood integrity in the City of Homes, as well as the priority residents place on parks and recreation opportunities, safe streets, and preservation of a small-town … Continue reading
Apparently the sky’s not really falling, since the proposed budget FY2020 presented by the City Manager increases expenditures in every major area and includes a million dollars for him to use to plan the next bond issue. Including the proposed … Continue reading
Click the graphic at left to review the 8 page draft of the end product from the recent City Council Workshop. It is a 5-year priority plan distributed by the City Manager, and a lot for citizens to digest. For most … Continue reading
The Council meeting on March 4th was a quiet affair with one highlight – local resident Dan Sebesta registered his objections to having his engineering qualifications questioned by the the City Manager. The highlight of his talk was his sign: … Continue reading
Cost Savings and Future Costs Council sang the praises of city staff at the January 7, 2019 council meeting for some cost savings – the cost for change orders for the Municipal Facilities was reduced to $302,516. So far the … Continue reading
UPDATE 2/18/2019: Find the breakdown for the final proposed cost of $5,200,890.50 for the Spruce/Fifth ($2.5 million) and Maple/Bolivar ($1.76 million) projects – plus $1 million to the engineering companies. About 10% of the 2016 bond issue. The project was … Continue reading
The January 28, 2019, City Council meeting went off like a rocket and just kept climbing. A link to the video of the meeting is available at the end of this article. Please watch the video, you’ll find it interesting.
Find information on Bellaire’s recycling program. The wrong items in our recycle bins cost us money! Find tips on other forms of recycling via the Our Environment tab on the menu. A Holiday Note: Did you know that MOST wrapping paper is … Continue reading
2019 Budget is Adopted – Future Bond Program Planning Session – A Possible $47 million Bond Issue in 2019
The Bellaire City Council, City Manager, and City staff discussed the possibility of another bond issue in 2019. The amount proposed by City staff is $47 million. A second bond issue in 2022 was also mentioned, at this point … Continue reading
Call for Referendum To Require a Vote on Sidewalks! SidewalkChoice was founded by a group of Bellaire residents who feel the $55 million dollar 2016 Bonds for Better Bellaire bond issue left out important facts about how the funds would … Continue reading
In response to requests for a printed version of my comments at the October 15, 2018 Council meeting I am posting it below: Good Evening Mayor, City Council, and Citizens,