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Weekly Words

4/13/18

Last Friday, Frisco Lakes celebrated the ribbon cutting of their new Westside Amenity Center.  This Del Webb community is growing so rapidly they needed an additional facility. It is 9000 square feet and coordinates with the existing amenity center.  The Westside Amenity Center also includes a pool, the ever-popular bocce ball courts and my favorite, pickleball. Frisco Lakes is the second fastest growing neighborhood in Frisco.  Congratulations.

Even though Saturday was almost freezing, I joined with our Frisco Police Officers to run in the Operation Blue Shield 5K in Dallas.  It is a nonprofit which encourages and facilitates real relationships between police officers and communities. Governor Abbott was even there to support our law enforcement.  Frisco Police care about our community. It is nice to show them we care about them, too. Thanks for hanging out and running with me Saturday morning, Officers Ryan Chandler, David Shilson, Tom Mrozinski and Britney Price.

John Keating and Will Sowell are both running for re-election for Frisco City Council.  They had a joint campaign event Sunday evening at Verona Villa. American Legion Commander, Fred Rogers, introduced John and Councilwoman Shona Huffman introduced Will.  Chris Beck from Frisco Fire Association and Ryan Chandler from the Frisco Police Association spoke in support of them. I have worked with both of these men for several years and am endorsing them for re-election.  Early voting begins on Monday, April 23rd.

Dana and I had the pleasure of having dinner with Clarke Wilcox and Michelle Weisbein.  They were the high bidders for dinner with us at our first-ever fundraiser in January. We had a lot of fun catching up and eating Tupy’s.  Clarke and Michelle are staples of Frisco and are committed to veterans. Thank you for all the pro bono legal support you provide veterans.

Dallas Business Journal hosted an awards ceremony this week for several “Best of” categories.  Scottish Rite won for Best Medical Project of the Year. Congrats to the new Scottish Rite team in Frisco.  We look forward to celebrating your opening this summer.

SMU invited me to come to their campus to see their Speed Tunnel.  SMU scientist Dr. Peter Weyand developed this technology. It monitors and measures your movement.  It was fascinating to see how sports and technology have intersected. With special cameras, it also records your movement.  Their cameras are 5X faster than the cameras which can capture the wings of a bird flapping. We saw recordings of many famous athletes running on the Speed Tunnel.  It has many applications other than elite athletes, like amateur athletes young and old and veterans or disabled adults with prosthetics. We invited FISD, Scottish Rite, 22Kill and Camp Craig Allen to attend this presentation.  Watch this youtube and you will be amazed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzMvXOxvY3Y

If you are looking for something to do this weekend, come say hi to me at one of these events.

Frisco Veterans Social

  • April 13, 5:30-7:30pm
  • City Works (upstairs south patio)
  • All Frisco Veterans and their families are invited
  • Sponsors: Baylor Scott & White Frisco, Strykes and Expedia Cruise Lines
  • RSVP: www.mayorcheney.com

Texas Big Star Half Marathon, 5K and 1 Mile

  • April 14, 7:00am
  • I’ll be running the 5K.  If you don’t want to run, they need volunteers.
  • www.runtexasbigstar.com

strEATS

  • Annual Downtown Main Street event
  • April 14, Noon – 7:00pm
  • Lots of food trucks and live music.
  • I will be there to welcome everyone at 4pm right before Emerald City Band performs.

Chai with Cheney

  • April 14, 6:00 – 8:00pm
  • Phillips Creek Ranch neighborhood
  • Vista Park at Phillips Creek Ranch
  • Social gathering and mini-town hall
  • Sponsor: Indian Affairs Community

1/19/18

Last Friday evening we celebrated and honored the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. A new non-profit called “Linking Cultures of Frisco” organized the event. It was a spectacular evening befitting the memory of this great leader. We listened to great music and a performer who recreates the “I Have a Dream” speech in the voice of MLK. The showcase of the night were the five FISD seniors who wrote and gave a speech on “Many Cultures, One Dream”. I was honored to be one of the five judges. All of the students were spectacular with their own youthful yet mature takes on this theme. We announced the winners and awarded them scholarships. The donations and sponsorships from the evening paid for their scholarships totaling $13,000. Frisco, you are a generous city who supports our students. And just as important, we had a room full of people with different skin color and coming from many different backgrounds and there was no question we are unified. Thank you, Frisco, it was a proud night for all of us.

Frisco Economic Development Corporation hosts a quarterly luncheon for C-level executives in Frisco. I had the privilege to open the event and welcome everyone. CEO Frank McGuigan of Transplace was the highlighted company. They are headquartered in HALL Park and provide transportation management and logistical solutions. www.transplace.com Frank is a veteran and moved his family to Frisco three years ago and loves his new home here. After Frank spoke, it was a treat to hear Russell Laughlin with Hillwood to talk more about Uber Elevate. When it is available to the public in 2022, we will truly be the Jetsons. It is the flying aircraft that will take you to the airport for around $40-$50. Uber chose two places in the world to initially provide this service, Dubai and Frisco! If you want to see more about Uber Elevate, check this out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuFSh7N0Nhw&t=159s

Tuesday night’s Council meeting was a big one. We voted and approved 6-0 to purchase 390 acres from Brinkmann Ranch. It is at the southwest corner of Preston and Panther Creek Parkway. If you have been to our other big parks like Warren Sports Complex and Bacchus Park, those are roughly 100 acres. This one is going to be two and a half times that size. Approximately 250 acres will be designated to sports fields and park space. The remaining 150 acres will be along Preston and we will wait for the right project to be adjacent to this park. It costs $61M. $34M comes from already approved bond money, $17.7M from Frisco’s Community Development Corporation and the remainder is possibly going to be covered by Frisco EDC. Yes, $61M is a lot of money but we know this land is only going to increase in value. If we were to wait much longer, we couldn’t afford it. Much like Grand Park, if the land wasn’t purchased ten years ago, we couldn’t afford it today. This park space provides all our future park needs at our city’s complete build out. We are planning for future Frisco families and their children. And for all of you who are not fans of multi-family housing, this alleviates zoning for 1100 apartments. Thank you to so many people who worked hard to make this deal happen.

Thursday and Friday is our Winter Work Session. All of our City departments present updates to Council. It is important because it give Council an opportunity to stop and evaluate and even question what we are doing and why we are doing it. We also set the agenda for the coming year by identifying a Top 10 List of critical projects. Naturally, roads, congestion and technology was a big discussion item. Actually, our engineering department just received an award from the Intelligent Transportation Society of America for aggressively using technology to solve our traffic concerns. Congrats, Paul Knippel and team! Winter Work Session is open to the public. Please join us at LaunchPad City.

Thursday evening was the retirement party for Jim Gandy. He has been the Frisco EDC President for 22 years. Jim has been instrumental from the very beginning which was bringing Stonebriar Mall to Frisco and IKEA and all the sports teams and so many companies and special events, including the NCAA FCS Div 1 Championship Game. 20% of all jobs in Frisco are a direct result of Jim’s work at the EDC. Also, for every taxpayer $1 spent by the EDC, we as taxpayers receive $4+ back. Jim Gandy has quite a legacy and not just a financial impact but countless friendships. The room was filled with people coming to honor a man who has meant so much to them. Not many people can work for 22 years and have a room full of community leaders tell them what an impact they made. Thank you, Jim, for coming to Frisco and warm wishes for all your future endeavors.