McRaven: Houston site is not ‘a dump’
Whitmire claims ex-oil field ‘environmentally unsound’ for new use.
The chancellor of the University of Texas System, responding to criticism from a state senator, says land the system bought in Houston is part of an abandoned oil field but can readily be developed into a new campus.
Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, charged that the tract is “environmentally unsound” and “a dump” during a Senate Finance Committee hearing. Whitmire opposes a new UT campus in Houston.
“Are you familiar with the history of this piece of land? It’s environmentally unsound. It’s an oiland-gas abandoned field,” he told Chancellor Bill McRaven and UT Board of Regents Chairman Paul Foster during the hearing.
“There’s a reason you’re able to get 300 acres locked up southwest of the dome,” Whitmire said, referring to the Astrodome. “Because no one else wants it . ... It’s a dump. This is nothing but you, in my judgment, bailing out some land speculators.”