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H-E-B EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION AWARDS went to finalists Alma Gonzalez, a teacher at Woodridge Elementary School, and Isabell Clayton, the principal at Fort Sam Houston’s Cole Middle and Senior High School. Gonzalez, who won the Lifetime Achievement Elementary award, received a $1,000 check in her name and $1,000 for the Alamo Heights Independent School District campus. Clayton accepted a $1,000 check for herself and a $2,500 check for the school. Winners selected from the ranks of finalists statewide will be announced in Austin May 6-7. According to a release, “H-E-B launched the Excellence in Education Awards program in cooperation with the Texas Association of School Administrators in 2002 as a positive way to support public education in Texas. It has become the largest monetary program for educators in the state, spotlighting best practices and celebrating the passion and creativity of Texas educators.”

AN “ALLEGED BOMB THREAT” AT ALAMO HEIGHTS HIGH SCHOOL MARCH 8 “was not a credible threat and a suspect was taken into police custody,” according to a spokeswoman with the Alamo Heights Independent School District. “Out of an abundance of caution, we partnered with (the Alamo Heights Police Department) to do a thorough sweep of the campus. We take any threat very seriously and will continue to work in partnership with local law enforcement to keep our campuses and children safe.”

A REVISED VERSION OF THE BRACKENRIDGE PARK MASTER PLAN was unanimously approved by the City Council on March 3. District 1 Councilman Roberto Treviño had requested “increased community outreach efforts by the city of San Antonio Parks Department and the Brackenridge Park Conservancy” after the initial draft of the plan was met with resistance by some in the community, according to officials. “I am pleased my City Council colleagues voted unanimously to approve a version of the Brackenridge Park Master Plan that was driven by innovative outreach efforts and community input,” said Treviño in a press release. An earlier plan that sparked protests proposed closing roads into the park to cars, and erecting large multistory-parking garages along with shuttles to carry visitors into Brackenridge. Critics charged that such a plan would limit access to the park.

THE U.S. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION IS OFFERING low-interest disaster loans to area businesses and residents affected by tornadoes and storms Feb. 19-20. The SBA acted with a disaster declaration in response to a request from Gov. Greg Abbott. Applicants may apply online at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Disaster loan information and application forms are also available by calling 800-659-2955 or emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Hearing-challenged individuals may call 800-877-8339. For more or to download applications, visit www.sba.gov/disaster. Mail to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155. The filing deadline is May 2.

DISTRICT 5 COUNCILWOMAN SHIRLEY GONZALES AND OTHER CITY LEADERS held a groundbreaking ceremony March 7 to spotlight improvement projects in the downtown area. These include enhancements for Frio Street from Cesar Chavez Boulevard to Houston Street, and include “reconfiguration of existing travel lanes to accommodate 5-foot bicycle lanes, four vehicular lanes and a median that will serve as a center turn lane,” along with other improvements geared toward greater pedestrian access and safety, according to officials.

TERRELL HILLS RECENTLY WAS NAMED as one of “The Most Expensive Suburbs” near a major city by Engel & Völkers, a real estate firm. The study was cited on Forbes.com.   

A “TOTAL MAKEOVER” FOR WEST LYNWOOD AVENUE from Capitol Avenue to Blanco Road kicked off March 15 during a groundbreaking attended by District 1 Councilman Roberto Treviño and other city officials. The improvements in the Beacon Hill neighborhood include “total reconstruction of the roadway. Additional improvements include curbs, sidewalks and driveway approaches,” according to a press release. The project is managed by the city’s Transportation & Capital Improvements Department, with a design by Ford Engineering Inc. and construction by Alamo City Constructors. The $703,000 budget is from the 2016 Infrastructure Management Program, a five-year initiative.

THE PARK VILLAGE SHOPPING CENTER WAS RECENTLY SOLD by GrayStreet Partners to Austin-based Ironwood Real Estate for an undisclosed sum, according to reports, though the property was assessed at $3.1 million in 2016 by the Bexar Appraisal District.

THE SAN ANTONIO RIVER FOUNDATION RECENTLY NAMED Robert Amerman as its new executive director, following the retirement of Estela Avery. Amerman, described in a press release as an “experienced executive, architect, sculptor,” had previously volunteered with the foundation for five years, according to officials. He was raised on the South Carolina coast and has called San Antonio home for eight years. The foundation’s mission is to “enhance the San Antonio River Basin as a vibrant cultural, educational, ecological and recreational experience,” according to a press release.

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