2019 State of the City

Mayor Ron Jensen presented his State of the City address at the Grand Prairie Chamber of Commerce event on March 7, 2019. View the video of his speech below.

2018-2019 Annual Report

Download Annual Report (PDF)

    2018 in Review
    Opened Epic Waters Indoor Water Park

    Opened The Epic Arts, Fitness and Entertainment Center

    Began construction of I-20 frontage roads from SH 161 to Belt Line Road

    Began construction of I-30 frontage roads from SH 161 to MacArthur Blvd.

    Began adding another north and south lane to SH 360 from I-20 to I-30

    Opened an expanded and remodeled Shotwell Library

    Opened an extension of SH 360 south to US 287

    Widened MacArthur Boulevard from I-30 to Hunter-Ferrell

    Launched city’s first Big Event, a city-wide volunteer day, with 1,000 volunteers tackling 100 service projects around city

    Introduced H2Know, an Automatic Water Meter Reading System, making water use and account information available to water customers in real time from their computer or smart device

    Created an online electronic arraignment system that allows Court, Legal and Police to review all of the arraignment documents for individuals in city jail on the computer and then arraign via video without actually having to do it in person in the jail

    Unveiled Traffic Signal Box art program in which artists painted or graphically wrapped 20 traffic signal boxes around town

    Began expansion and remodel of Warmack Library

    Implemented JustFOIA, a public information software that enables citizens to send public information requests online

    Implemented a Certified Mental Health Coordinator position in Police to further assist those suffering from mental distress or illness

    Implementation of the Teacher’s PET (Preparedness and Emergency Training) program at GPISD via city’s Emergency Management Office

    Processed 21 zoning cases, 31 site plan cases, 48 specific use permits, 53 final plats, 26 preliminary plats, 10 comprehensive plan updates, three unified signage plans, two alcohol variances, two street name changes

    Processed eight text amendments to the Unified Development Code, including ordinances for Brewpubs/Microbreweries; residential development standards; and a comprehensive overhaul of signage standards. Began working on an update to Corridor Overlay District standards

    Worked to update the 2010 Comprehensive Transportation and Development Plan

    Created a Complete Count Committee for the 2020 Census

    Processed 55 variance/exception cases through Zoning Board of Adjustments

    Achieved AA+ bond ratings from Fitch Ratings

    Replaced four fire engines, a brush truck, air truck and four ambulances

    Added insta-worthy exterior art and mural features to the Tourist Center, remodeled interior, opened new Tourist Center Trunk Stop gift shop

    Implemented new wellness programming for employees to continue their path to improved overall health through Peerfit, RealAppeal, and other campaigns

    Implemented electronic onboarding for new employees

    Negotiated new medical plans, benefits and rate structures for employees to improve plan sustainability

    Improved volunteer management and consistency city-wide with a fulltime volunteer coordinator position

    Established Facebook Pixels and Crowdriff to engage social media on visitgrandprairietx.com

    Attracted almost 70,000 people to our libraries for 1,864 programs

    Launched 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program in libraries to enhance early literacy

    Opened EPIC READS 24/7 automated library at The Epic

    Added 8,629 new library card holders, welcomed 488,526 visitors to libraries, checked out 340,334 books and DVDs from libraries, checked out 50,822 digital books, movies, music and shows, logged 96,783 hours on the public computers

    Completed 31 Street Sales Tax projects, paving the way for smooth driving

    Completed incentive negotiations and facilitated start of Epic West, the first phase of more than 500,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space on SH 161

    Expanded Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone #1 from 400 to 1,200 acres and extended the term of the zone until 2041

    Landed Living Spaces in former Restoration Hardware building for 175,000 square feet of retail, a Beck’s Prime restaurant, and 700,000 square feet of fulfillment center space

    Landed auto parts maker Flex-N-Gate, who acquired a 430,000-square-foot facility on I-20 to house its $140 million manufacturing equipment and 600 employees

    Started renovations of historic Fire Station #1 for conversion into the FireHouse Gastro Park restaurant

    Received and promoted “Gateway to Grand Prairie,” OMNIPLAN’s master plan for development of the I-30 and Belt Line Road corridor

    Facilitated Zavala’s Barbecue’s purchase and renovation of the former Barbara’s Bakery for occupancy in early 2019

    Opened Premiere Lux Cinema on Westchester and Carrier Parkway

    Opened Methodist Health System convenient care campus at Polo and Lake RidgE

    Opened Baylor Emerus 103,891-square-foot hospital on Kingswood Boulevard and SH 360

    Negotiated to retain, improve or expand facilities of Fortune 500 companies CardinalHealth and Haier/GE Appliance

    Opened Skymates Flight School at the Grand Prairie Airport, training about 150 pilots a year from around the world for Envoy, which operates as American Eagle
    Started Love Water. Love Life. educational watershed campaign

    Launched the Healthy Babies campaign to reduce infant mortality in 75051

    Upped Prairie Paws monetary donations by 10%; decreased total intake of animals by 10%; sterilized almost 2,000 animals; and found homes for 1,846 grateful animals via Prairie Paws

    Developed public-facing website for real time rain gauge data
    Installed water crossing lights on East Jefferson

    Picked up 8M pounds of brush from 18,000 residents through city’s Brush Crew operations

    Created a unique web map application called “Unidirectional Flushing System,” the first of its kind for cities, for the Water Department to replace having to refer to 36 individual map books to track flushing the main water lines. Can be used on staff’s mobile computers in the field and not have to lug around large map books

    Hosted six CREW CAMPS for 285 students at Landfill teaching them about conservation, recycling, energy and wetlands
    Presented Plastic Free Plan-it at the Uptown Theater screening the film A Plastic Ocean and featuring world-record free diver Tanya Streeter, raising $10,000 for recycling bins for GPISD

    Decreased crime by 19% from 2017 to 2018; decreased crime by 47% 2010 through 2018, which saw 3,814 fewer crimes even though our population grew by 25,000; a Top Ten Safest City in Texas (populations of 100,000 or more), as ranked by the FBI.

    2019 Goals
    Christen Epic Waters Indoor Waterpark’s outdoor wave pool

    Reopen an expanded and renovated Warmack Library, Prairie Paws Animal Shelter and Charley Taylor Recreation Centerl

    Open phase I of PlayGrand Adventures all accessible playgroundl

    Open Palace Parkway extension from Belt Line Road east to Interstate 30l

    Implement a facial recognition software program for police to more effectively identify wanted personsl

    Begin construction of a new City Hall, linking existing City Hall to Development Center

    Welcome more than 50 new restaurants and retail stores along SH 161, including: Courtyard by Marriott, Ross, Michaels, Ulta, Burlington, Conn’s, Petco, Burkes, HomeGoods, Chick-fil-a, Starbucks, Panda Express, Chipotle, El Pollo Loco, Smoothie King, Jimmie John’s, Jason’s Deli, Olive Garden

    Open FireHouse Gastro Park restaurant in historic Fire Station #1

    Finalize plans for hotel/retail/restaurant center in EpicCentral Parkl

    Launch Building Blocks program to offer grants to residents for exterior home improvementsl

    Replace Fire Station #4 (open early 2020); enlarge and remodel Fire Station #6 (open spring 2019) and replace an engine, three ambulances and fire boatl

    Widen Great Southwest Parkway from four to six lanes from Sara Jane to Mayfield Road (complete 2020)l

    TxDOT adding one southbound and one northbound lane on SH 360 from I-20 to Jefferson to tie in with the I-30 and SH 360 intersection improvements, both scheduled to be complete end of 2020l

    Install artificial turf on the Parkhill Park football fieldsl

    Implement a video surveillance network and innovative crime hot spot policing initiatives to maintain Grand Prairie as one of the safest major cities in Texas

    Design and construct taxiway extension and holding bay expansion for Runway 35 at Grand Prairie Municipal Airport to alleviate aircraft congestion due to aircraft operations more than doubling in 2018l

    Successfully host the first city-wide volunteer banquet to recognize the highest contributing volunteers for the city

    Add art to 20 traffic signal boxes

    Convert Dechman Room to a Brides Room at Ruthe Jackson Centerl

    Open Living Spaces furniture store and Beck’s Prime Restaurant in former Restoration Hardware building; and Zavala’s Barbecue in downtown Grand Prairie

    Start Airbus and Helisim $40 million North American Training Center adjacent to the Grand Prairie Municipal Airport; training 1,500 pilots and mechanics a year

    Realize funding of elevated frontage road at SH 360 and Riverside to facilitate future development of 15 acres near Riverside Golf Club

    Expand and extend Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone #3 enabling the city to maintain and maximize this tool for fostering quality development and redevelopment in the southern portion of the cityl

    Promote and leverage Grand Prairie’s Qualified Opportunity Zone surrounding the Entertainment District for tax-free investments and associated development funding, as permitted by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017

    Leverage the Veterans Administration’s occupancy of 2737 Sherman Street to generate adjacent senior housingl

    Replace pumps at Dorchester Leveel

    Launch Building Blocks program to offer grants to residents for exterior home improvements