Last night, Jack
and Cammy Garey took the first formal step that will transform their beautiful Hill Country ranch into a public city park.
The Garey's gift includes the ranch property, which Jack Garey
has owned since 1967, and an estate home built by the Gareys
in 1995.The 6,500 square-foot ranch home features Italian stylings of a Tuscan country villa and could be used as a retreat center in the future.The ranch lies between RR 2243 and the South San Gabriel River and includes more than a mile of riverfront property.
The Garey's $5 million cash gift to the City for development of the park is conditioned on a matching amount to be raised within three years after the ranch is deeded to the City.Cammy and Jack Garey
, in their 60s and 70s respectively, explain in a letter to the City that, "This may require some advance financial planning so we want to make you aware of this gift in advance of when it will be needed."
As the owner of a road and highway construction firm since 1978, Jack Garey
has witnessed first-hand the explosive growth in Central Texas that has transformed ranchland into roads and housing subdivisions.Garey
says that their desire to preserve their ranch was prompted by the expanding development nearby, including the construction of Ronald W. Reagan Blvd. (formerly the Parmer Lane Extension) less than one mile to the west of Garey Ranch.Garey
knew that if they didn't preserve it, the ranch "would ultimately be sold and developed, and it's just too nice a place for that."
Prior to starting his
road construction company, Garey
practiced law for 20 years in Austin and also authored a book on workers' compensation.Garey
has served on the Workers' Compensation Commission
and as a trustee on the Southwestern University
Board of Trustees.
...Cammy and Jack Garey both received bachelor's degrees from the University of Texas at Austin, where Jack also earned his law degree.