Citizens Sound Off Against 'Get to the Grid' Moving to Veterans Park


Published: April 9, 2015

By: Steve Fullhart

COLLEGE STATION - A dozen speakers came to the College Station city council meeting Thursday night to make their voices heard on a proposed plan to move an Aggie football game day shuttle service to Veterans Park.

The Brazos Valley Youth Soccer Association has expressed its concern over a plan that would mean Saturday soccer games for its hundreds of members would have to move or be cancelled on Aggie football game days if A&M's "Get to the Grid" service relocates to the park.

Thursday, the speakers took advantage of the "Hear Citizens" portion of the council meeting to say they're against Veterans Park as a parking lot. A pair of youth soccer players with written statements were among the speakers, along with coaches, league organizers and parents.

Post Oak Mall told A&M in December that it was ending its agreement to host "Get to the Grid" at the mall's parking lot. The city council has the final say on where the shuttle service would go if its in College Station, and will take up the issue on its agenda at the next council meeting April 23, according to Mayor Nancy Berry.

Also at the meeting Thursday, College Station leaders said they were in support of so-called "voting centers" in Brazos County.

The council heard a plan put together by County Clerk Karen McQueen, who said 19 Texas counties are currently using similar plans. Instead of precincts and voters only being able to vote at one location, the county would offer 25 locations in the county, and any voter could use any location. The number of locations could drop in subsequent years.

"Voting centers" would need to be along city transportation bus routes, have large parking lots, be ADA accessible, have large meeting areas to accommodate voters, and have internet reception and capability, according to McQueen, who added that if the county's application is approved, she says the county would see lower election costs.

Also Thursday, city officials said Brazos County District Attorney Jarvis Parsons has asked College Station to review its ordinances concerning surveillance cameras in convenience stores, citing more strict rules and regulations by the City of Bryan when it comes to having the cameras, along with the quality of the video from them.

The review comes after last month's kidnapping, assault and death of store clerk Kevin Garcia while he worked at a College Station convenience store. Surveillance footage played a role in the arrest of the suspect in the case.

City Manager Kelly Templin said Thursday a staff review of the city's rules is underway.