The progressive town started by the Imperial Sugar Company, today is undergoing unprecedented growth, said Sugar Land Mayor Joe Zimmerman last week in his first state of the city address at what some said felt a little like the ceremonial launching of the Smart Financial Centre, the city’s latest destination venue.
The new facility has already hosted a couple of indoor performances with its debut marked right before 2016 came to an end and its birth this January. At the time of writing this column, the performing arts center’s Facebook page, by the way, shows 7,516 people have been there and there are 21,3014 “Likes.”
Nancy Zimmerman, the mayor’s wife, and family members in attendance at the year-end review, organized by the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce with introductions by its Chairman Sterling Carter, included daughter Allison and her husband, Chris. They were also joined by Adelina Davis, Mayor Zimmerman’s mother-in-law, who celebrated her 95th birthday this past Saturday.
Among the nearly 1,000 attendees at the annual event, cozily accommodated with the adjustment of the push button moving walls, a couple of elected officials from neighboring cities admired the city-owned venue. An attendee commented about how the facility did not look any larger than the Stafford Performing Arts Centre; reportedly seating 1,155 in its theatre. The Smart Financial Center seats 3,000 to a maximum of 6,400. No doubt, the wall adjustments can be a little deceptive.
Delighting history bluffs in his beginning remarks, Mayor Zimmerman said Sugar Land was originally owned by the government of Mexico and granted to Samuel M. Williams by Stephen F. Austin. Other accounts relating to Sugar Land’s history, interestingly start with Stephen F. Austin, known as the father of Texas. Mayor Zimmerman’s review of the city’s accomplishments in 2016, additionally highlighted in a video, addressed the city’s upcoming proposals and policy direction, detailed by City Manager Allen Bogard in a status of the city’s administration.
George Foundation’s Dee Koch, Fort Bend County Clerk Laura Richard, Vi and Wayne Chandler, EHRA Civil Engineer Grizelda Gonzales, and former City Councilmember Danny Nguyen (on a best seller list for a recent book publication) were among the notables in last week’s address.
The onetime company town is about to increase its population by 30,000, which will expand its tax base.
“From 87,000 to 117,000 in December of this year,” said Mayor Zimmerman, and “during the next 11 months our staff and city council will work closely with elected representatives of both communities (Greatwood and New Territory) to provide the same level of service that our residents enjoy for police, fire, EMS, parks and rec, public works, environmental and neighborhood services, planning, engineering and many more.”
It’s been quite a year for Sugar Land with more to come!
In the meantime, look for an upcoming Feb. 7-14 sale of chocolates to benefit AADA (Asians Against Domestic Abuse) at Cosmetics and Chocolates on State Highway 6. For more information, contact AADA President Rashmi Sharma at 713-962-7896.