To those who know and love the city, the following statement will come as no surprise; Van Alstyne is a unique place to live. It is also a unique place to grow a business, and as evidenced by the recent growth of that particular sector, the secret is out.

The Van Alstyne Community Development Corporation is a symbol of that uniqueness. Thanks to a forward-thinking community and some very involved volunteers, the VACDC sprung to life in 1997. It was then that a Board of Directors came together to create a non-profit corporation to serve the public interest in the form of funded park projects and development and retention of local business, just to name a couple points of interest.

Not every city has a Community Development Corporation, though most have an Economic Development Corporation. Those Van Alstyne planners in 1997, however, knew that a community development corporation could both improve the quality of life for its residents through projects — funded through a quarter-cent sales tax — and serve as an extension and representative of the business community.

The Van Alstyne Community Development Corporation funds projects that are brought to and approved by a board of directors, a board made up of seven local residents from all walks of life. On the VACDC Board you will find a corporate accountant, a realtor, a banker, local small business owners, a human resources specialist and an engineer. These volunteers each bring a unique perspective and have one goal at heart; serve the best interests of the residents, business owners and the City.

VACDC’s 20th year was a busy and productive one. In that span, VACDC’s Board shifted its focus from mainly quality of life projects to recruiting and retaining commercial and retail businesses. The Board therefore hired its first-ever director as Rodney Williams took the reins in July. Since that time six months ago, six new businesses — Cooley Bay Winery, the Duchess Inn, Grayson Provision Co., Jafar’s Mediterranean Grill, Bluebonnet Gifts and Arroyo’s — have come to town, while six more — Wolfe Pack Trading, Napoli’s Italian Restaurant, the Garnished Nest, TexaKona Coffee Lodge, Mi Taco and a downtown restaurant — are in the process of opening their doors.

The message is clear: besides being a wonderful place to live Van Alstyne is also open for business.

For more information on the Van Alstyne Community Development Corporation or local business contact Rodney Williams at 903-712-2002 or

Rodney Williams is the Community Development Director for the Van Alstyne CDC