April 16


Verano's South Side swamp

Verano Land Group is a partnership of rich Las Vegas investors that wants to build a university village – packed with housing and retail and office space – next door to the Texas A&M campus on the South Side. VTLM Texas is the company that's supposed to develop the project, as far as the City and County are concerned. After all, VLTM, not Verano Land Group, signed a contract in November 2008 entitling it to more than $250 million in reimbursements, to be paid out of property tax revenue.

If this seems like the build-up to something bad, it is.

At stake is the development's promise to create a virtuous cycle – by building housing and amenities that would accelerate the new campus' growth, which, in turn, would propel the build-out of a vital, new urban neighborhood. Or at least the promise that it'll happen anytime soon.

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