Frisco residents are rallying against their city government’s plan to offer a special deal to a well-connected developer that would radically change their neighborhood. Over 20 local taxpayers filed a petition protesting the proposal, which will force a vote on the issue at tonight’s city council meeting.

Billionaire Dallas developer Craig Hall is seeking special favors no other developer in Frisco has. While a city is free to change its zoning laws, Hall is seeking special exemptions that would apply only to him — he wants to amend the zoning for his HALL Park development, located on the southwest corner of Dallas and Warren Parkways in Frisco, so it would no longer be limited to office buildings alone.

Hall wants permission to build over 2,000 apartment complex units, lift restrictions on the number of square feet he can construct, hold an unlimited number of “special events” on the property, and extend height restrictions for buildings to 400 feet — the highest in all of Frisco.

Residents have informed Texas Scorecard that Hall promised to do things for them that he left out of his application to Frisco’s zoning committee. In proposals to homeowners in the area near HALL Park, Hall promised residents he would build a performing arts center and create a boundary around his property marked with trees. Homeowners opposed to the plan pointed out that neither of these has been included in Hall’s zoning application and thus would be unenforceable, leaving Hall free to renege on his promises.

In a written response, Hall stated he wasn’t required to put either in his zoning application but he remains committed to both.

Residents have also expressed to Texas Scorecard their concerns about the effect this development would have on them. They feel the number of apartments, height levels, square footage, and public performances Hall is seeking will reduce their property values, increase traffic congestion, and increase noise in their neighborhood.

A total of 28 residents — over 90 percent of homeowners in the area —filed a petition against the development proposal requiring a supermajority vote of the council to pass Hall’s zoning application. Anything less than a supermajority of council will defeat the application. Residents are organizing to speak tonight against the special deal and put a stop to the application.

Frisco City Council will meet tonight at 6:30 PM. Council members’ contact information is listed below:

Mayor: Jeff Cheney
Phone: 972-292-5050

Mayor Pro-Tem/Place 2: Shona Huffman
Phone: 972-292-5052

Deputy Mayor Pro Tem/Place 1: John Keating
Phone: 972-292-5051

Place 3: Will Sowell
Phone: 972-292-5053

Place 4: Bill Woodard
Phone: 972-292-5054

Place 5: Tim Nelson
Phone: 972-292-5055

Place 6: Brian Livingston
Phone: 972-292-5056

Robert Montoya

Born in Houston, Robert Montoya is an investigative reporter for Texas Scorecard. He believes transparency is the obligation of government.