Business View Civil and Municipal, July 2023
At a Glance: Floresville, Texas
What: Peanut Capital of Texas and a dynamic and growing community with small-town charm
Where: On the outskirts of San Antonio, Texas
I am the proud City Manager of the great city of Floresville,” Andy Joslin, the City’s Manager remarked when Business View caught up with Floresville officials to discuss the obvious charms of this quaint and lively little city.
One would find it hard to disagree with Joslin after learning of the many attributes that this Texas gem has on offer. Residents can testify to the ease of living in the area and with lively historical roots tracing back to 1867, Floresville has earned its place among great Texas cities.
Joslin adds to his description of the city relaying that “Floresville serves as a county seat and is both a historically and culturally diverse home to an ever-increasing number of residents and businesses looking for an intimate community near San Antonio.”
New residents are drawn to the area
“We are getting a lot of people that are moving from the San Antonio area that may still work there because it is still an area where many of the businesses and big corporations are, but they want to get to an area where they can raise their children.”
A great place indeed for families as Floresville’s school district is highly ranked and is a pull for families looking to provide quality education for their children as they settle into life in Floresville.
“Residents are coming here and building homes and they are becoming part of the community. We are centrally located between San Antonio and Eagle Ford Shale region down in Kenedy and Karnes City, so a lot of the executives that come from other parts of the country to run these oil companies want to move to our community,” Joslin elaborates.
Historical roots and current trends
Like any dynamic modern city, history plays an integral role in both the evolution and current positioning of an area and Floresville is no exception. The community can trace its roots back to the early days of the Spanish settlers who, once discovering the merits of the area, began to establish both ranchos and missions dotted along the San Antonio River. Using this key waterway as an efficient route to ship supplies elsewhere, these early settlers and the missions left behind, have now become part of the historical fabric of this beautiful region of Texas.
Fast forwarding to the recent past, Floresville has been able to profit from the close proximity to San Antonio and some of the leading gas and oil companies in the country to help grow its residential base to just shy of 8,000 inhabitants as of the last 2020 population census.
Residential and Commercial Development
It is this growth that the city is both capturing and capitalizing on, according to Joslin. The city has been working closely with key developers on both the residential and commercial side to help accommodate this growth and provide the very best living amenities for its current residents and all those that are choosing to call Floresville their new home.
“We have a number of key housing developments in the works with specific developers and we do have a large number of residential developments that are coming into the area,” Joslin says.
“Some of these key developers include DR Horton and we have a golf course community known as Riverbend. DR Horton is the community developer on that one,” Monica Veliz, Assistant City Manager relays.
“This development will consist of 1000 homes once it is final and complete. They are working on that in phases out there,” she adds.
Housing options consist mainly of single-detached family homes as this is what the need seems to be, according to Veliz.
“They are looking for affordable housing for those first-time homebuyers and those young families that are wanting to have a place of their own,” she insists.
Veliz is quick to point out that it is not just residential development that is filling the Floresville area, so too are key commercial developments with steady interest being shown by companies eyeing the community as a great place to set up shop.
“Commercial development is coming in just as strong, and it’s catching up to our residential development and we are trying to keep up with this [demand].”
Both Joslin and Veliz have identified the growing need for more retail options to cater to those already living in the community and those who are moving in or planning to move to Floresville.
“This is something that we will need to bring,” Veliz begins. “Retail options such as different types of clothing stores, different types of restaurants, and things like this.”
Among the varied businesses that have kept Floresville in their commercial sights is Petco. Already established in the Floresville area, this is not the standard Petco that so many of us are accustomed to. It is rather a hybrid pet and agricultural and farming supply store of sorts.
“This is the first type of Petco that they have branched off with, I believe,” Veliz states. “It is considered a neighborhood and farm-based store because we are in an agriculturally-based area. They offer different types of products that farmers would use that you would not typically see in a big city-type of Petco setting.”
Joslin interjects to add that “for the opening of Petco, we saw a lot of national exposure with CNN reporting on the opening” because of the unique business model for this area.
“We are getting a lot of the commercial business developers from the San Antonio area and then also nationally that want to come to this area with a different type of business plan. They are developing new models in their business that will fit perfectly within our community,” Joslin expands.
There are a few reasons why this business trend for Floresville is occurring, Veliz highlights.
“I think it relates to the affordability of the community and being able to give people that hometown feeling,” she reflects.
“You can walk into just about any type of store here in the town that we have and it is also [attributed to] that very warm feeling that draws residents [and commercial interests] in.”
On the purely fiscal end, Veliz attributes how low tax rates make it that much more favorable for businesses to take up shop in the area, along with the ability of the city to not charge ‘impact fees’.
“I think that is something very inviting because we work with many different developers and businesses and that is always the first thing they ask us—do you charge impact fees?”
Peanut Capital of Texas and other perks
Floresville has worked hard to preserve its charming downtown hub, both in maintaining some of its historical buildings, as well as ensuring that everything a resident could want and need is concentrated in this community gathering area.
“The great thing about our downtown area is that you have everything here. You have a city hall, the county courthouse, the library, the tax office, and a movie theater—a one-stop shop,” Veliz recounts enthusiastically.
Adding to the small-town community spirit that Floresville residents enjoy is an array of events that the city puts on throughout the year. Top of that list is the annual, renowned Floresville Peanut Festival every October. Businesses have grown alongside the festival, most notably Ms. Annie’s Peanut Patch which is known worldwide for its delectable peanut butter brittle.
“We are known as the Peanut Capital of Texas,” Joslin notes. Just another claim to fame, it can be argued, for a city that is clearly making its mark.
What the future holds
Among the top priorities for the city, direct sustainable infrastructure initiatives can be included.
“We are about to have our ribbon cutting on a new water well that we’re drilling,” Joslin highlights.
“The project should be completed in late June. So due to the growth, we are adding another water well to our community and the city council authorized us to borrow $14.2 million for infrastructure needs,” he adds.
“We are working on extending the water and wastewater lines to areas where we are seeing growth in addition to replacing some of our older infrastructure.”
Beyond ongoing and proposed infrastructure upgrades, Joslin articulates other aspirations he has for the city of Floresville in the coming months.
“My goal and my purpose is to continuously attract more businesses, and more amenities for our residents. We want to be a welcoming community, both for our current residents and our future ones, to let them know that Floresville is the place to be.”
When asked the same question, Veliz nods in agreement. “My thoughts are along the same line. We want to grow our community and still have that small-town feeling.”
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