TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A recent economic analysis shows that a proposed master-planned-community for the City of Tyler could pump billions of dollars into the local economy.
Xing Tan, a developer out of china, would like to take a 178-acre vacant lot on West Loop 323 and construct a housing complex for thousands of Chinese exchange students.
His proposal, the Bellwood Forest Development, would house 3,000-5,000 students and their families and include its own school. His goal is to prepare these students to attend Tyler colleges.
An economic analysis by the Hibbs Institute for Business and Economic Research at UT Tyler projects that the development could generate more than a billion dollars over time.
Tom Mullins, President of the Tyler Chambers' Economic Development Council says these projections are very positive.
"You know there is going to be cost up front and you know there is going to be revenue going forward," says Mullins. "But we didn't know what the numbers were until this study came out."
According to the study, over the 7 years it would take to fully construct the development and gradually bring in residents, Smith County could see, $1.4 billion in business volume, 758 jobs, $6.8 million in sales tax revenue, and $1.9 million in property tax revenue.
"This is all new money coming into the Tyler economy and there is going to be incomes that these people are going to have to spend to live on," says Mullins. "They have to buy groceries, they have to buy goods and services."
As for the upfront costs, Mullins says most of that will be for infrastructure, but that the cost will be gradual.
"This project will not be built all at once, it will be phased in," says Mullins. "The developer will cover a lot of the initial infrastructure costs."
A zoning change would have to be approved by the city before Tan's company can move forward with the project. The developer had planned to build taller buildings than the city allows, but has since amended that plan.
The City of Tyler's Planning and Zoning commission meeting is May 1.