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A multi-story building right off The Square could be coming to San Marcos

A developer filed a conditional-use permit to build high-end student apartments in Downtown San Marcos.

SAN MARCOS, Texas — The city of San Marcos is growing, and as more people move in, they need a place to live. One developer has applied for a permit that would let him build nearly 300 apartments right next to The Square.

Some still think of San Marcos as a small town, but others now think this new development could change all of that.

"They're looking to buy out some of this territory around the area, so maybe a couple of months we've kind of known about it," said Vivian Hernandez, whose family owns a food truck in the area the building will go. "Yes, there's some good and there is some bad."

For her, the growth means more people in the city, which means more customers at her truck.  

"The bad thing is keeping up with traffic, obviously, the growth, [growing] pains of it ... having to go through the growth, [growing] pains is the most difficult part," she said.

"Growth is coming and change happens," added Thomas Rhode, the developer who applied for the permit. "Unfortunately, that's part of the bad side of it, as well as change in and of itself can feel bad."

Credit: Thomas K. Rhodes

There will be six stories on one end and seven on the other to minimize the change of the terrain. A total of 924 bedrooms will fill in the 299 multi-room apartments.

It would also be the first time a developer negotiates with the city under the new code to build a building higher than the five-floor maximum downtown.

"This project could set the precedence for what other future projects can look like and be in the commitments that are made," said Rhode.

As for Hernandez and her business, she still sees both sides.

"I could see how locals that don't have businesses might not like it as much, but I do get a benefit by bringing people in because I do have a business here," she said. "All cities are going to grow. No matter what they're going to grow, you can't stop the growth."


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