West U Activist Lectures Bellaire City Council

June 3, 2014 By:Anne Marie Kilday

Local News

West University Place resident Ramsay Elder took the issue of more parks in West U to the Bellaire City Council Monday.

Elder told the Bellaire Council that West U officials are encouraging their residents to use the neighboring parks in Bellaire.

“I think that’s outrageous,” Elder said.

Elder, a former Bellaire resident who has lived in West U for the past 39 years, thinks that the city of West U should acquire more parkland. He said the city has “never acted” on a $2 million bond referendum approved by voters in 2006 to buy parkland east of Edloe St.

He told the Bellaire Council about city of West U Parks Director Tim O’Connor’s recent comments about West U residents having access to nearby parks in Houston and Bellaire. O’Connor made those comments after a recent West U council meeting in which the 2014 Parks Master Plan Survey was presented.

Quoting from a local newspaper, Elder noted that O’Connor said that West U residents can always use the developing Evelyn’s Park, which is located at Bellaire Blvd. and Newcastle.

“I have to ask, rhetorically, is that okay with you?” Elder said to the Bellaire Council. “If that’s okay with you, I’ll see you at the parks.”

Elder said he was unable to attend the recent West U council meeting, but that he plans to address the Parks Advisory Board and the Council on the issue of acquiring more parkland soon. The parks board meets Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the West U Rec Center

Elder said he is upset that city officials seem to have “an official policy” of encouraging West U citizens to use the parks facilities in other cities.

“I am planning to bring it up at the next (council) meeting,” Elder said.

Elder complained that West U is about 90 percent the size of Bellaire, but West U only has about 17 acres of parkland. Bellaire, on the other hand, with the acquisition of Evelyn’s Park, will have about 45 acres of parkland, Elder said.

7 Responses to “West U Activist Lectures Bellaire City Council”

  1. Quien Sabe Says:

    What goes on in West U should stay in West U

  2. Lucille Says:

    When my 4 year old grandson visited me in Cinco Ranch, I planned on taking him to a neighborhood park. Most of the parks are empty. However, I was intimidated by signs that were threatening. There are many parks in the gated communities inside Cinco Ranch out of reach of the general public. I was given the name of a park we could go to by someone in authority but its location didn’t look safe.

    In some instances, I think the local associations may fear liability. Some have ponds in the middle of the park with warnings about snakes and alligators.

  3. Joni Says:

    West U has lovely parks and so does Southside and Bellaire. We welcome our “neighbors” to our parks and I am sure they welcome West U residents, as well. Many play date groups move from park to park between these cities so that their children have varied and great park experiences. We’ve worked so hard to raise funds and develop lovely places for everyone to play! There are some programs for WU residents only but there is truly no way to monitor who plays in an open park or greenspace. The relationships we share with our neighboring cities, HISD/West U Elementary, WULL, WUSA, Tri-Sports, and our outside the city South Campus are part of what makes living in West U so wonderful! Thank you to West U Parks & Rec, Parks Board and Friends of Parks Fund, Inc. (and all of Friends’ supporters, donors, and volunteers) for making our parks terrific and such an enhancement to our community!

  4. Panem et Circense Says:

    In total agreement with “”. It is absurd to pretend that the residents of any of the self governing incorporated cities within the greater Houston area be limited only to the parks in their city. Every park that West U acquires reduces the tax base and it means higher taxes for all it’s residents.
    There are enough parks and green areas available to the residents of West U inside West U and in the surrounding areas.

  5. Lucille Says:

    In the interest of safety, I really can’t see residents of either West U or Bellaire wanting to use the other’s parks. They certainly wouldn’t want their kids crossing the railroad tracks or dealing with the traffic on Bissonnet and Bellaire.
    I would like to mention that in Cinco Ranch in the Katy Area, there are many lovely parks. There are also very big signs that state using the parks and not living close by is trespassing. It shuts out all the kids living in the many, many apartments in the area, so they play in the street.

  6. Donna Field Says:

    I am impressed to know that West U has an activist. I didn’t know it was allowed.

  7. Jeremy Green Says:

    Wow. Reckon Elder can find out why West U spent $4,700 on a pool turtle and lily pad and not on park land?

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