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Dr. Gladys Maestre, Professor of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine in Edinburg and Director of the Memory Disorders Center at UTRGV’s Institute for Neurosciences, is conducting research about the high number of Alzheimer’s and dementia cases in the Rio Grande Valley’s Latino population, UTRGV officials announced on Thursday, October 19, 2017. The Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council, along with the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and its Board of Directors, lobby the Texas Legislature and the UT System Board of Regents on matters that benefit and protect UTRGV and its School of Medicine, which have major campuses in the city.

Photograph By DAVID PIKE

Total construction activities in Edinburg from January through August 2017, including almost $22.5 million for the month of August, reached more than $217 million, compared with more than $166 million during the first eight months of 2016, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced. During August 2017, new construction of commercial facilities and new construction of multi-family residences led the way, with the issuance of building permits for investments valued at more than $8.4 million and more than $6.4 million, respectively. Those year-to-date and monthly totals do not include the value of any building-related activities at The University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley and the UTRGV School of Medicine in Edinburg because the state government, not the city, oversees all construction at the Edinburg campus. The building permits do not include the value of the land for the homes and buildings. In general, a building permit is legal permission given by the City of Edinburg, through the Code Enforcement Department, to erect, construct, renovate, maintain, or conduct any other specified activity on any building or structure, or on any installations or facilities therein. The term “building permit” includes but is not limited to building permits, electrical permits, mechanical permits, and plumbing permits. The top construction projects in Edinburg for August 2017, not including the value of the land, are: $4,000,000 – Safil Group LLC, 3131 W. Freddy González Dr., West Meadows Subdivision (Commercial New); $1,500,000 – Aguayo Corona LEP, 3807 S. Veterans Blvd., Kelly-Pharr Subdivision (Multi-Family New/Addition/Remodel); $1,500,000 – CTC Asset Company, LTD, 501 W. Owassa, Kelly Pharr Tract Subdivision (Commercial New); $850,000 – Linebarger, Goggan, Blair & Sampson, 1512 Lone Star Way, Lone Star Plaza Subdivision (Commercial New); $725,000 – Amigo Motel Jay B. Patel, 2721 S. Hwy 281, Kelly-Pharr Subdivision (Commercial New); $600,000 – Doctor’s Hospital at Renaissance, 2603 Michelangelo Dr., Doctors Center Ph. 2 Subdivision (Commercial Additions/Repairs); and $600,000 – Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, 1023 E. Kuhn St., Edinburg Original Townsite Subdivision (Non-Taxable Addition/Remodel). The Edinburg EDC, of which Agustín García is Executive Director, is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council. The Edinburg EDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mayor Richard García as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, Elías Longoria, Jr., as Secretary/Treasurer, and Richard Ruppert and Dr. Peter Dabrowski as Members. Mayor Richard García and Edinburg EDC Executive Director Agustín García are not related.

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Edinburg Economic Development Corporation reports $217+ million in construction authorized in the city from January through August 2017

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

Total construction activities in Edinburg from January through August 2017, including almost $22.5 million for the month of August, reached more than $217 million, compared with more than $166 million during the first eight months of 2016, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced.

During August 2017, new construction of commercial facilities and new construction of multi-family residences led the way, with the issuance of building permits for investments valued at more than $8.4 million and more than $6.4 million, respectively.

Those year-to-date and monthly totals do not include the value of any building-related activities at The University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley and the UTRGV School of Medicine in Edinburg because the state government, not the city, oversees all construction at the Edinburg campus.

The building permits do not include the value of the land for the homes and buildings.

The Edinburg EDC, of which Agustín García is Executive Director, is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council.

The Edinburg EDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mayor Richard García as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, Elías Longoria, Jr., as Secretary/Treasurer, and Richard Ruppert and Dr. Peter Dabrowski as Members.

Mayor Richard García and Edinburg EDC Executive Director Agustín García are not related.

In general, a building permit is legal permission given by the City of Edinburg, through the Code Enforcement Department, to erect, construct, renovate, maintain, or conduct any other specified activity on any building or structure, or on any installations or facilities therein. The term “building permit” includes but is not limited to building permits, electrical permits, mechanical permits, and plumbing permits.

MOST VALUABLE CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS FOR AUGUST 2017

For August 2017, total construction activities in Edinburg was $22,449,629, according to the city’s Code Enforcement Department.

The top construction projects in Edinburg for August 2017, not including the value of the land, are:

$4,000,000 – Safil Group LLC, 3131 W. Freddy González Dr., West Meadows Subdivision (Commercial New);
$1,500,000 – Aguayo Corona LEP, 3807 S. Veterans Blvd., Kelly-Pharr Subdivision (Multi-Family New/Addition/Remodel);
$1,500,000 – CTC Asset Company, LTD, 501 W. Owassa, Kelly Pharr Tract Subdivision (Commercial New);
$850,000 – Linebarger, Goggan, Blair & Sampson, 1512 Lone Star Way, Lone Star Plaza Subdivision (Commercial New);
$725,000 – Amigo Motel Jay B. Patel, 2721 S. Hwy 281, Kelly-Pharr Subdivision (Commercial New);
$600,000 – Doctor’s Hospital at Renaissance, 2603 Michelangelo Dr., Doctors Center Ph. 2 Subdivision (Commercial Additions/Repairs); and
$600,000 – Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, 1023 E. Kuhn St., Edinburg Original Townsite Subdivision (Non-Taxable Addition/Remodel).

357 NEW SINGLE-FAMILY HOMES, VALUED AT $41.9 MILLION, APPROVED FOR CONSTRUCTION FROM JANUARY THROUGH AUGUST 2017

For the month of August 2017, building permits were issued for 47 new single-family residences, valued at $4,962,514, compared with 55 new single-family residences, valued at $7,854,787, during August 2016.

Year-to-date (January through August 2017), building permits were issued for 357 new single-family residences, valued at $41,964,295, compared with 312 new single-family residences, valued at $41,813,670, from January through August 2016.

In addition, for the month of August 2017, building permits were issued for 53 additions/remodels of single-family residences, valued at $778,230, compared with 61 additions/remodels of single-family residences, valued at $489,537, in August 2016.

Year-to-date (January through August 2017), building permits were issued for 500 additions/remodels of single-family residences, valued at $4,784,215, compared with 492 additions/remodels of single-family residences, valued at $3,903,295, from January through August 2016.

Multi-family residences – which range from two-unit duplexes to complexes of five or more units – totaled 69 buildings (mostly duplexes), representing 188 units, valued at $6,483,553, were approved for construction in August 2017. By comparison, there were 19 multi-family residences, representing 40 units, valued at $2,102,1016, issued building permits in August 2016.

Year-to-date (January through August 2017), building permits were issued for 221 multi-family residences, representing 644 units, valued at $39,377,656, compared with 191 multi-family residences, representing 850 units, valued at $58,794,076, from January through August 2016.

The top categories in Edinburg for August 2017, which led to the total figure of $22,449,629 were:

$8,424,000 – Commercial New Construction;
$6,483,553 – Multi-Family Residences New Construction;
$4,962,514 – Single-Family Residences New Construction;
$907,690 – Non-Taxable Alterations (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine);
$893,642 – Commercial Alterations;
$778,230– Residential Alterations; and
$0 – Non-Taxable New (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine);

The top categories in Edinburg during August 2016, which led to the total figure of $13,833,469, were:

$7,854,787 – Single-Family Residences New Construction;
$2,780,000 – Commercial New Construction;
$2,102,106 – Multi-Family Residences New Construction;
$592,129 – Commercial Alterations;
$489,537 – Residential Alterations;
$15,000 – Non-Taxable Alterations (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine); and
$0 – Non-Taxable New (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine).

The top categories in Edinburg for the months of January through August 2017, which led to the total figure of $217,066,039, were:

$84,537,000 – Non-Taxable New (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine);
$41,964,295 – Single-Family Residences New Construction;
$39,377,656 – Multi-Family Residences New Construction;
$30,423,194 – Commercial New Construction;
$10,672,574 – Commercial Alterations;
$5,343,105 – Non-Taxable Alterations (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine); and
$4,784,215 – Residential Alterations.

During the previous year, for the months of January through August 2016, the top categories in Edinburg, which led to the total figure of $166,259,480 were:

$58,794,076 – Multi-Family Residences New Construction;
$41,813,670 – Single-Family Residences New Construction;
$32,589,085 – Commercial New Construction;
$23,115,933 – Commercial Alterations;
$5,015,021 – Non-Taxable Alterations (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine); and
$3,903,295 – Residential Alterations; and
$1,028,400 – Non-Taxable New (government, religious, but not including the value of construction activities at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley or its School of Medicine).

AUGUST 2017 CITY BUILDING PERMITS, $100,000 AND HIGHER

Single-Family Residences New Construction

For August 2017, there were 47 single-family residences issued building permits by the city.

The building permits, which do not include the price of the lot, ranged from $67,200 to $490,000, and represented a total value of $4,962,514.

Of the 47 single-family residences for which building permits were issued, 20 of them were for construction each valued at $100,000 or higher.

The $100,000+ building permits follow by value of the construction, name of the owner(s), address, and subdivision. The permits do not include the value of the lot.

$490,000 – Héctor García, 3118 Cuarzo St., Canton Village Subdivision;
$381,500 – Waldo Homes, LLC, 1126 Topacio St., Canton Village Subdivision;
$280,000 – Jacob & Jonathan Innovative Const., 3010 Esmeralda St., Canton Village Subdivision;
$200,000 – Geonimo Ávila, 1406 Wayne Dr., Trenton Manor Unit 2 Ph. 2 Subdivision;
$190,000 – Rich Heritage Construction, 2304 Penrose, Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$180,000 – María Cárdenas, 2505 Drakensburg Ave., Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$175,000 – Infinity Custom Construction, LLC, 2509 Holland Ave., Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$170,000 – Newmark Custom Homes, LLC, 1719 Chapel Hill, The Hills at Chapin Subdivision;
$170,000 – Rocass Homes, 4819 Nevis Dr., Summerfield Manor Subdivision;
$142,000 – Arqcarpa Design and Construction, 2310 Elbrus Ave., Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$135,290 – McKenny Glenn, Inc., 4220 Stillwater Cove, The Coves Ph. 1 Amended Subdivision;
$130,000 – Ángela M. Herrera, 423 Cardinal Ave., Sprague Meadows Ph. 1 Subdivision;
$125,ooo – Eulalio Cantú, 5110 Mission St., Davis Palms Subdivision;
$125,000 – Víctor Gallardo, 2701 Sequoia St., Davis Palms Subdivision;
$125,000 – Dynasty Custom Homes, 2315 Penrose Ave., Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$125,000 – S. Alanis Construction, 1918 Lamar Way, Fairhaven Legacy Ph. 1 Subdivision;
$114,200 – Guzmán Construction, LLC, 2505 Elbrus Ave., Jackson Heights Subdivision;
$105,000 – JR Construction, 3424 Aquamarine Ln., Granite Meadows Subdivision;
$100,000 – Marco Doria, 1305 July Dr., Summerfield Manor Subdivision; and
$100,000 – A-One Insulation, 3027 London Dr., Camden Village Subdivision.

Commercial New Construction

For August 2017, 10 permits were issued for new construction of commercial facilities, for a value totaling $8,424,000.

Of the 10 new commercial construction projects for which building permits were issued, eight were for construction each valued at $100,000 or higher.

The $100,000+ building permits follow by value of the construction, name of the owner(s), address, and subdivision. The permits do not include the value of the lot.

$4,000,000 – Safil Group LLC, 3131 W. Freddy González Dr., West Meadows Subdivision;
$1,500,000 – CTC Asset Company, LTD., 501 W. Owassa, Kelly-Pharr Tract Subdivision;
$850,000 – Linebarger, Goggan, Blair & Sampson, 1512 Lone Star Way, Lone Star Plaza Subdivision;
$725,000 – Amigo Motel Jay B Patel, 2721 S. Huy 281, Kelly-Pharr Subdivision;
$500,000 – CTC Asset – Adobe, 503 W. Owassa Rd., Kelly-Pharr Subdivision;
$392,000 – The Shoppes at Rio Grande Valley LP., 4061 S. I-69C, Phase 1 Subdivision;
$200,000 – Martell Marvin Revocable Trust, 909 Big Horn Dr., Big Horn Business Park Subdivision; and
$150,000 – T Mobile, 4001 S. I-69C, The Shoppes at RGV Subdivision.

Multi-Family Residences New Construction

For August 2017, building permits were issued for 69 multi-family residences new construction/addition/remodel, with 31 of those projects valued at $100,000 or higher (not including the price of the lot).

Work on those new facilities represented a combined value of $6,482,553 for that month.

The building permits for the 31 structures each valued at $100,000 0r higher follow by value of the construction, name of the owner, address, and subdivision:

$1,500,000 – Aguayo Corona LEP, 3807 S. Veterans Blvd., Kelly-Pharr Subdivision;
$269,280 – Martha López, 1005 W. Cano St., West Addition Subdivision;
$257,873 – D’Prime LLC, 3112 Javalina Ave., The Reserves at Canton Subdivision;
$240,000 – RBR Development & Investment, 410 Downing Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$200,000 – Joe Rosales, 510 Peabody Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$190,000 – Triple I Homes, LLC., 2820 Wolverine St., The Reserves at Canton Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 419 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 420 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 416 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 401 Downing Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;

$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 409 Downing Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 516 Downing Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 503 Downing Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$175,000 – Erickson Construction, LLC., 502 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$171,000 – Daniela Pérez DP Homes, 3116 Javalina Ave., The Reserves at Canton;
$171,000 – Novellini Construction and Dev., 3115 Sabercat Ave., The Reserves at Canton;
$161,200 – JGV Properties, LLC., 402 Peabody Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$161,200 – JGV Properties, LLC., 403 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$152,000 – Novellini Construction and Dev., 2113 Taxco Ct., Villas Escondidas Subdivision;
$140,000 – Novellini Construction and Dev., 2122 Taxco Ct., Villas Escondidas Subdivision;
$140,000 – Novellini Construction and Dev., 2118 Taxco Ct., Villas Escondidas Subdivision;
$125,000 – Alicia Garza, 407 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – Alicia Garza, 415 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 509 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 517 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 506 Peabody Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 502 Peabody, MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 505 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 514 Peabody, MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision;
$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 414 Peabody, MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision; and

$125,000 – RQSLRO LLC, 501 Teague Ave., MonMack Landing Phase 1 Subdivision.

Residential Additions/Repairs

For August 2017, there was one residential additions/repairs project, valued at $100,000 or higher, issued a building permit by the city.

In all, there were 53 residential additions/repairs projects authorized for that month, ranging from $100 to $150,000, for a total value of $778,230.

The building permit for the residential additions/repairs project valued at $100,000 0r higher follows by value of the construction, name of the owner, address, and subdivision:

$150,000 – Arturo Díaz, 2903 Lakeshore Drive, Lake James Subdivision.

Commercial Additions/Repairs

For August 2017, there were 22 commercial additions/repairs which were issued building permits by the city.

The building permits, which do not include the price of the lot, ranged from $500 to $600,000, and represented a total value of $893,642.

Of the 22 commercial additions/repairs for which building permits were issued, two were for construction each valued at $100,000 or higher.

The building permits for the two structures each valued at $100,000 0r higher follow by value of the construction, name of the owner, address, and subdivision:

$600,000 – Doctors Hospital at Renaissance, 2603 Michelangelo Dr., Doctors Center Phase 2 Subdivision; and
$100,000 – Align Investments LTD., 215 E. University Drive, Edinburg Original Townsite Subdivision; Subdivision.

Non-Taxable Additions/Repairs

For August 2017, there were five non-taxable additions/remodels issued building permits by the city.

Those five building permits, which do not include the price of the lot, represent a combined value of work of $907,690.

Two of those projects involved building permits each valued at $100,000 or more.

The building permits for the two structures each valued at $100,000 0r higher follow by value of the construction, name of the owner, address, and subdivision:

$600,000 – Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, 1023 E. Kuhn St., Edinburg Original Townsite Subdivision; and
$237,500 – Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District, 3614 W. Rogers Rogers Rd., ECISD UT 2 Subdivision.

Non-Taxable New Construction

For August 2017, there was no building permit issued for non-taxable new construction.

Director of Institute for Neurosciences at UTRGV School of Medicine to focus on Alzheimer’s, dementia, in Valley’s senior Latinos

Dr. Gladys Maestre, Professor of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine in Edinburg, wants to know more about why the number of dementia cases in the Valley’s Latino population is so high.

So Maestre, Director of the Memory Disorders Center at UTRGV’s Institute for Neurosciences, plans to revisit former research she conducted in Venezuela and replicate the study in the Rio Grande Valley.

“We hope that we can provide services and establish a study in the community to learn about memory problems in the Valley, and how to empower the individuals, their families and the care givers,” she said.

The Maracaibo Aging Study

To understand what sort of studies Maestre – with expertise in human biology, genetics and bioinformatics – plans to conduct in the Valley, it is important to know the basis for the new study, which was announced by UTRGV officials on Thursday, October 19, 2017.

In 1998, Maestre conducted The Maracaibo Aging Study, in her home town of Maracaibo, Venezuela. The three-part study included a door-to-door survey to obtain demographical information, the collection of information regarding changes in the abilities of the subjects, and finally, a full physical workout, with tests.

She believed a study of Latino cultural habits – like how they care for aging family members – would be helpful in understanding the high rate of Alzheimer’s and dementia in Latinos, and could facilitate a path to education and prevention.

“We thought it is possible that people may live longer if they have been taken care of at home,” Maestre said. “But the reality is, prevalence is one of the highest reported and it is not because people live longer with the disease. It is because there are too many new cases.”

The Maracaibo Aging Study was the first longitudinal study on aging in Latin America, she said. “We identified the people within the community of Maracaibo, and we have assessed them many times since.”

In the initial stages, an in-depth characterization of living conditions, health, and cognitive functions such as memory, language and abstract thinking, were measured to determine effects of aging.

“This is the only study that has been drawn long enough to make conclusions about portions of the disease and clinical presentation such as signs, symptoms,” Maestre said.

In September 2017, a paper – “Incidence of Dementia in Elderly Latin Americans: Results of the Maracaibo Aging Study” – outlining the results of her Maracaibo study were published in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.

“This was the very first article that highlighted that this is indeed a problem in Latin America,” she said.

Today in the Rio Grande Valley

As in Maracaibo, the frequency of Alzheimer’s and dementia in the Valley is very high, Maestre said. In addition, diabetes and cardiovascular problems are common in the Latino population.

“What would happen if we improve the care, and we don’t have as many people dying from diabetes and cardiovascular disease? Would we have more or fewer Alzheimer’s cases?” she said. “This is really very worrisome, because we found that if you could account for this competing risk, then the number of cases of dementia would actually double.”

If care improves among people with Alzheimer’s, then the number of cases in the community will increase because the survival rate will go up, she said.

The type of care is critical, as well, as nursing homes are not the ultimate answer to caring for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.

“We really need to be prepared to have more Latinos with Alzheimer’s, and we must especially recognize the need for early diagnosis,” she said.

Looking for early signs of memory loss is important for early diagnosis.

“At the beginning, the disease is very personal, so only you notice. Then others begin to notice, such as your family around you,” Maestre said. “We want people to be aware that with age come cognitive changes, but if you are noting that these are more and more frequent, then definitely you have to look for a good assessment.”

About UTRGV

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) was created by the Texas Legislature in 2013 as the first major public university of the 21st century in Texas. This transformative initiative provided the opportunity to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley, including a new School of Medicine, and made it possible for residents of the region to benefit from the Permanent University Fund – a public endowment contributing support to the University of Texas System and other institutions.

UTRGV has campuses and off-campus research and teaching sites throughout the Rio Grande Valley including in Boca Chica Beach, Brownsville (formerly The University of Texas at Brownsville campus), Edinburg (formerly The University of Texas-Pan American campus), Harlingen, McAllen, Port Isabel, Rio Grande City, and South Padre Island.

UTRGV, a comprehensive academic institution, enrolled its first class in the fall of 2015, and the School of Medicine welcomed its first class in the summer of 2016.

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Vicky Brito contributed to this article.For more information on the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and the City of Edinburg, please log on to http://edinburgedc.com or to http://www.facebook.com/edinburgedc

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