Whether you already call Beaumont home, are considering making Beaumont your home or are just visiting, I want to take this opportunity to thank you for allowing us to make it “Another Great Day in Beaumont” for you and your family! The year 2018 marks our 180 1h Birthday which we will celebrate in December along with a Holiday Tree Lighting adding another annual celebration. We hope you can make it on December 5, 2018.
Almost half a million people live on our side, the right side of Texas, and Beaumont with a population of approximately 118,000, is the region’s largest city, the seat of Jefferson County, as well as our region’s hub for shopping, dining, entertainment, legal and medical services. It has been my honor to serve as Beaumont’s Mayor since 2007, after serving as an at-large member of the City Council for 13 years.
Progress continues in the revitalization of our beautiful downtown. Tree and brick paves line Calder Avenue which leads into our downtown, where events and activities can be constantly found at our Event Centre, Towne Lake, Beautiful Mountain Skate Park and the Rotary Centennial Playground. Exciting cultural, entertainment and civic events can also be found at our Civic Center and Historic Julie Rogers and Jefferson Theatres. The newest addition to downtown includes the Lakeside Center that will offer a variety of activities and events with some targeting our senior citizens. Quality of life is a priority for Beaumont. Such events as Dogtoberfest, Oktoberfest, Mediterranean Festival, Family Fire Festival at the Fire Safety Museum, Patriot Day, 4th of July Celebration and our newest celebration as mentioned above, our bilihday party and tree lighting celebration. The concert series of the Symphony of Southeast Texas along with numerous nationally-known musical artists as well as visual artists at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas and the Art Studio make Beaumont the cultural hub of our region.
In addition, Beaumont is uniquely located in close proximity to some of the finest outdoor activity amenities in Texas. Our city not only borders the Neches River but also borders the Big Thicket National Preserve, a forested preserve often cited as one of the most bio diverse areas in the world. Beaumont is also close to the beaches of the Gulf of Mexico. With Sam Rayburn, Toledo Bend and Dam Blakes nearby, there are many hunting, fishing and birding opportunities. To enhance access to these recreational amenities we continue to upgrade and enhance our parks, nature and recreational facilities. Examples include the relatively new Cattail Marsh Boardwalk, a 300 foot nature boardwalk, located within a 900 acre wetland complex. The newest addition to this complex is the recently opened Wetlands Education Center made possible through the generous gifts of the Magnolia Garden Club. Beaumont is located on the North American bird migratory path and this new facility offers birders and visitors exceptional views to more than 350 species of birds that visit our city along with the resident bald eagle. In addition to the skate park and dog parks, we recently opened our second hike and bike trail, the Folsom Hike and Bike trail which is a 1.4 mile multi use trail extending from Dowlen Road to Folsom relatively close to the Gulf Terrace Hike and Bike Trail. In addition, you may want to visit our state of the art tennis center at the Municipal
Athletic Complex which also houses our softball complex. With another helping hand from the Magnolia Garden Club, Beaumont was recently named a Bee City one of only three in Texas.
As always, the business and educational sectors continue to thrive in Beaumont. Lamar Institute of Technology continues to provide world-class technical skills development for our business and industry, while Lamar University continues to expand. Celebrating another year of record enrollment, Lamar University completed new construction including the new Administration Building as well as the Center for Innovation, Commercialization and Entrepreneurship (CICE), which serves as an important link between the intellectual capital of the university and the business and industrial sectors of our community.
With regard to business and industry, many new companies and businesses continue to choose Beaumont as a sound investment. We continue to see significant business expansions. Recent projects like OCI’s new $1B methanol plant becoming the largest of that type in the US, along with two significant expansion projects at ExxonMobil’s Beaumont facilities in excess of $1.3B investments, Jefferson Energy’s new $55M intermodal export and import fuels terminal, and a $169M investment to build new marine and rail facilities and expanding the dock infrastructure to improve capacity at the Port of Beaumont. The Port of Beaumont is the #1 strategic military outload port in the nation, #5 in the nation in terms of tonnage and the #3 US Seaports’ Exports with the most growth by Forbes. Beaumont is the #1 exporter of crude in the nation and also #1 expmier of liquid natural gas which is a direct reflection of our pro-business climate.
I invite you to visit our website at www.beaumonttexas.gov to find out more about the City of Beaumont. Also for unique opportunities for you and your family, please download our entertainment app on your smartphone – DISCOVER BEAUMONT. Please join me to make it “Another Great Day in Beaumont”!
Mayor of Beaumont