Activist initiative to revitalize aging Haltom City corridors gains traction
HALTOM CITY, TX, January 10, 2023 /24-7PressRelease/ — Ron Sturgeon opened his first business 50 years ago in Haltom City, and he still has his offices in the city with 18 employees. He said, “I’ve always loved Haltom City. It’s where I started my first business on NE. 28th St. across from Underwood’s BBQ a Volkswagen repair shop.
“Recently, when I went to open another business in Haltom City, an event center, I encountered lots of red tape and came to understand what is frustrating so many business owners who try to come to Haltom City,” said Sturgeon.
18 months ago, Sturgeon was one of the founders of Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA), which then hired a third party to issue a report to the city outlining ideas on how to bring more small businesses to the city. City council and management dismissed the research report and its recommendations and have continued to say local small businesses shouldn’t have any input in the ordinances Haltom City Council passes or other initiatives to bring more businesses to the city or to keep the existing businesses here.
HUBA Director of Communications Joe Palmer says, “It’s astounding to me that the city doesn’t want any help and believes they have all the answers.”
“I do think small businesses should have a seat at the table, especially when everybody agrees that the city is declining in the southern in central quarters,” adds Palmer.
After more than a year of no action by the city, Sturgeon decided to put up the website MakeHaltomCityThriveAgain.com, outlining his concerns and ideas to bring small businesses back to Haltom Cities aging corridors and make them bustle again. The site includes a video series that explains the aspects of the concept plan to make Haltom City Thrive Again.
“We have been offering the city ideas to bring the small businesses back for 18 months and have yet to have them acknowledge any of our ideas or take any action to implement them,” says Sturgeon. “Because city leaders have yet to admit there is a problem is South and Central Haltom, they cannot begin to formulate a plan and without a plan, nothing is going to change,” said Sturgeon. For that reason, he is seeking a change in the management of the city.
He recently put up three billboards along the major freeways in the area naming the website along with bylines, such as “Time for a Change,” “Bring the Businesses Back,” and “We Need New Leaders.”
Sturgeon says he is pleased with the responses he’s been getting from the billboards. He says people are wishing him luck and offering support and a lot of people are saying that his initiative is the right thing at the right time for the declining parts of Haltom City.
He says “I’m thrilled with the response, but I’m realistic, and based on my business experience, I know it will take 2 to 5 years to implement the change in leadership, and then the changes in policies that will bring small businesses back to the city. He hopes to garner high-quality candidates for Haltom City Council that have business experience and also have the perspective of the residents.
About Haltom United Business Alliance
Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) is a group of business owners dedicated to representing existing business interests in Haltom City and promoting the growth of diverse businesses as well. Innovative strategies are needed to create a strong tax base and enhance quality of life for residents, city employees, and business owners. All Haltom City business owners are eligible to join HUBA. For more information, contact Joe Palmer at (682) 310-0591 or by email at HUBAgrp@gmail.com or visit the group’s Facebook page at Haltom United Business Alliance.
About Haltom City
Haltom City is a diverse, majority working-class city located between Dallas and Fort Worth in Tarrant County, TX. Haltom City is minutes from both the DFW Airport and Downtown Fort Worth with direct access to major highways including I-820 and SH-121. Due to an outdated and restrictive use matrix that discourages new business and deters growth, several areas of Haltom City have seen a decline in small businesses which provided goods and services and were a significant source of jobs, including the once-thriving automotive industry. However, Haltom City has the opportunity to reverse this trend and should prioritize development of inner-city land and vacant buildings, particularly in the major corridors close to the city’s center. The city is financially healthy with a capable manager and staff who would like to see diverse business development occur and need the support of the City Council to make it happen.
About Make Haltom City Thrive Again
The Make Haltom City Thrive Again website offers information and resources about its purpose and goals. For more on Sturgeon’s personal ideas and background, check out his book Keeping the Lights on Downtown in America’s Small Cities and watch the videos on his Facebook page. Ron is also the founder of the Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) which represents existing business interests in Haltom City and promotes growth of diverse businesses as well. HUBA is not a political action committee and does not endorse candidates. If/when Ron endorses candidates, he will do so on his own with the Make Haltom City Thrive Again organization.
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