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Residents unsure of North Beach Canal plans, but like the prospect of it

Posted at 6:33 PM, May 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-15 19:33:47-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — It's been three years since plans for a navigable canal and River Walk style district on North Beach were unveiled.

The canal was meant to solve drainage issues there.

But with no work on the horizon, do residents still believe in the project?

A number of people on North Beach have said they don’t really know anything about the project, except that there's been mention of a canal.

Developer Jeff Blackard is preparing for TIRZ #4 meeting on Tuesday to once again get the North Beach canal project moving.

He said after gaining support from the Port of Corpus Christi, Nueces County and the city, he called this the most important meeting thus far.

“Because it’s the first time that everybody will sit and listen to, kind of, the facts about the drainage, and the economic impact, and all the great things that could happen on North Beach,” said Blackard of Blackard Global."

Residents like Bob Catalano like the idea because of the impact on drainage a canal could have.

“Definitely improve North Beach because it would allow some of that water to drain off the streets. Right now it's if you live on the streets that flood, you know, two or three days you can’t access your house,” Catalano said.

But he’s thinking North Beach may need more immediate work.

“I've lived on the beach here almost 25 years now and my street’s one of the main streets that floods," Catalano said. "We know we need to fix the drainage so something needs to be done. Not sure we need a navigable canal having boats come in and out.”

Businesses owners like the idea of a River Walk type attraction on North Beach. Nick Catalano of Yo's South Philly said more tourists is more revenue.

"It should be gorgeous, should be absolutely gorgeous," Nick said. "They need a lot of things for this beach. They have this beach here and they need to bring tourists down to this community, in this little area of Corpus (Christi). I think it'd be a great idea for this place."

“Owners and businesses here, especially Pier 99 that’s been here such a long time, are excited just to see the area kind of revamped and rejuvenated. I think that’s the most exciting part,” Joey Garza said, manager at Pier 99.

More tourists could also mean more development.

“I think as more money is brought into this North Beach area, we’ll see other people start investing in this area,” said Nick.

Blackard said the Lighthouse Point project, another one he's helped on, is wrapping up soon. They are shooting for July for the opening.

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