G.K. Maenius retired from his position as Tarrant County administrator, but he isn’t quite done representing the county. 

Maenius will continue serving on the boards of the Trinity River Vision Authority, which oversees the Central City / Panther Island project, and the Fort Worth-Tarrant County Innovation Partnership, which is bringing a new Texas A&M campus to downtown. 

Representatives from the Tarrant Regional Water District, the local sponsor of the $1.16 billion Central City flood control project, and the city of Fort Worth asked if he would remain in his role with the Trinity River Vision Authority, Maenius said. 

Maenius, who retired in September after 35 years as administrator, has been president of the authority since its inception in 2006. He played a similar role in forming the innovation partnership. 

Before moving forward, Maenius said he checked with Tarrant County commissioners to ensure they were comfortable with him remaining on the advisory boards. 

“They thought it would be a good idea to maintain that continuity,” Maenius said. “I have a great loyalty to the county. The county has been very good to me through all my professional life, and I will stay on the board as long as the county wants me on that board.” 

If county leadership decides they want a different representative, Maenius said he will follow their lead.

Both boards keep different government partners informed on progress of projects near downtown Fort Worth. The city and county are splitting $4 million in costs to fund the Fort Worth-Tarrant County Innovation Partnership. Formerly known as Fort Worth Now, the organization coordinates activities between Texas A&M, developers and potential tenants. 

Before 2019, the Trinity River Vision Authority board issued contracts for the Panther Island project, which will dig a 1.5-mile-long bypass channel to reroute part of the Trinity River. Fort Worth leaders expect the project to transform a disinvested zone between downtown and the historically Hispanic Northside community into a multiuse riverwalk development. 

The White Settlement Road bridge, one of three Panther Island bridges, opened to traffic in April 2021. The Henderson Street bridge, shown in the background, opened in September 2021. (Rodger Mallison | Fort Worth Report)

Panther Island partners moved the authority’s contract responsibilities to other agencies, including the Tarrant Regional Water District, following the release of a 2019 consultant report and issues surrounding J.D. Granger’s leadership of the project. 

Since early 2022, the project has received $423 million in federal funding. 

The Trinity River Vision Authority reduced the number of times it meets and has canceled several meetings because of a lack of quorum. The Nov. 9 meeting was canceled due to scheduling conflicts, water district spokesperson Matt Oliver said.

Members are expected to gather at 3 p.m. Dec. 13 to hear updates from city and water district staff as government agencies prepare to release a new economic development strategy for Panther Island.

Haley Samsel is the environmental reporter for the Fort Worth Report. You can reach them at haley.samsel@fortworthreport.org.

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Haley Samsel is the environmental reporter for the Fort Worth Report. You can reach them at haley.samsel@fortworthreport.org. Her coverage is made possible by a grant from the Marilyn Brachman Hoffman...