Sherman has officially grown by more than 450 acres on its west side near the intersection of Highway 289 and U.S. Highway 82.


During a special called meeting, the Sherman City Council heard from no area residents during a public hearing on the annexation Monday and then approved the annexation of the 459.6 acres of land, including Preston Club Estates, into the city.


In a document provided to the council, city staff noted 78 percent of the property owners for the 331 individual tracts of land in the area signed the petition requesting the annexation. City staff previously said the annexation request was spurred by homeowners’ need for assistance with their water and sewer system.


City Manager Robby Hefton said Monday’s action was the last work on the annexation for the council, but the work is just beginning for city staff.


“We looking forward to working with the residents out there,” Hefton said.


Among the city services to be provided to the area are police and fire protection, solid waste collection and disposal, bulk waste pickup and animal control services. The capital improvements Sherman plans to undertake in the area include work on the water and sewer systems.


Hefton said Monday the city will be sending letters out to residents of the area to explain all the city services they will be offered.


The city is expected to pay around $2 million for improvements to provide the services needed to the annexed property including adding gravity sewer mains, a lift station and force main. The work is expected, according to documents provided by the city, in 2018.


When the schedule for the annexation was presented to the council in March, it also approved an engineering contract with Freeman-Millican Inc. for the design of sewer main revisions, lift station construction and force main construction to serve the Preston Club area and the northwest portion of the city.


In March, Community & Support Services Manager Nate Strauch said Sherman officials believe having water services active on the corner of Hwy. 289 and Hwy. 82 could spur commercial development in that area and open that area up to new businesses.


City staff previously said the planned improvements will eliminate Preston Club’s need for an on-site wastewater plant and will provide wastewater services to the subdivision and the surrounding areas.


In addition to the annexation, the council also approved the execution of a contract with LASS Water Company Inc. for the purchase of the Preston Club and High Country Estates water and sewer systems. The city did not pay anything for the systems and the costs of the improvements to them is expected to be paid for through utility rates from the new customers in the annexed area.


The annexation is the first major expansion by the city in more than a year. Over three months in late 2015 and early 2016, Sherman expanded by about 470 acres. In December 2015, Sherman brought 186.244 acres of land — including Lamberth Road Estates, Carriage House Estates, Shady Oaks Subdivision and various unplatted tracts on Montclaire Drive — into the city limits. Then in March of last year, Sherman annexed approximately 274 acres along Friendship Road and Highway 56.


Herald Democrat Managing Editor William C. Wadsack contributed to this report.