CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Lifelong Corpus Christi resident Thad Roberts spent Tuesday fishing from the pier at the Marinaville Bait Stand next to the Nueces Bay Causeway on the Corpus Christi side.
To his left sat the lighthouse at the Lighthouse Pointe Apartment Complex that's nearing completion.
“I think it’s real pretty," Roberts said. "I think you’ll be able to see it a long way, and I think it’s real good.”
Good and tall.
Developers say, when construction is complete either by the end of the year or in early January, it'll be the tallest lighthouse in Texas and the tallest lighthouse built from stone in the country — perhaps even the Western Hemisphere.
They chose stone for the lighthouse on the recommendation from the stone mason who was using it for the exterior of the 159 apartments at the new complex.
"It may have taken a little bit longer, but as you can see the outcome has been magnificent," project manager from the Blackard Companies Jonathan Gonzalez said. "It’s just such a great monument for Corpus Christi.”
For the time being it will simply be that — a monument.
The Frazier Lighthouse, named after Corpus Christi businessman Lynn Frazier, will not have any navigational purposes.
The light emitted from the top will be decorative and changed for holidays like Christmas.
Eventually, the hollow base of the lighthouse will serve as a private entertainment space for the restaurant that's set to be built next to it.
Developers are considering adding an elevator in the future to enable people to tour the lighthouse.
The only way to the top right now is a ladder, something Gonzalez has climbed an estimated 30 to 40 times over the past couple of years as he monitored the construction process.
“Eat your Wheaties in the morning if you’re going to climb that thing," he said. "It’s 135 feet straight up.”
In his 74 years of living in Corpus Christi, Roberts has seen lots of changes — some good, some bad.
As for the new lighthouse — he puts it in the good category.
“I think it will add to the points of interest for people coming down here to visit Corpus,” he said.