Trafalgar weighs expansion options

The town of Trafalgar is considering growing for the first time in 15 years.

The town council is looking at three annexation options, which would add up to 1,000 acres to the town. Two of the options focus on adding land along State Road 135.

“Commercial growth is coming from the north, and we just want to be ready,” council president Jeff Eisenmenger said. “We have to be ready.”

The town council will meet March 5 to discuss the impact of the annexations and potentially narrow the options to one. Providing police protection and other services will be the main aspects considered in choosing, according to Tramcore Realty broker Mark Bowman, who is volunteering to assist with the project.

Currently, town limits end at Spring Lake Road on State Road 135, but one option the council is considering would annex land along State Road 135 up to the intersection of State Road 44.

That annexation option — the largest of the three — would add 1,075 acres, or 1.6 square miles, to the town, according to the maps provided by Bowman.

If this option were picked, the majority of the land annexed would be along State Road 135, which is maintained by the state, so the town would not have to plow or cut grass there, Eisenmenger said.

The town also is considering annexing 128 acres on the west side of town. The annexation area would start west of Pearl Street and continue south past State Road 135, west of Indian Creek High School and Lakewood Drive.

A third option would add 180 acres, extending the eastern town limits farther along State Road 252.

The town council will choose only one option, Bowman said.

Some of the annexation areas include homes, so letters will need to be sent to notify people of any changes, Eisenmenger said. If they choose, residents can opt out of being annexed into town, utilities and streets superintendent Lee Rodgers said.

Eisenmenger said that before the town council moves forward, the members need to settle on a fiscal plan to determine the cost of providing services to the new annexation area.

The most recent annexation in Trafalgar was done about 15 years ago, when the town expanded east, Eisenmenger said.