Office Building at Generation Park Nears Completion

Jewel Box site

Office Building at Generation Park Nears Completion –

Redemption Square project features first floor site designed to accommodate an upscale restaurant

By Christopher Shelton

Tenants will begin moving into the first office building in Generation Park’s lifestyle district Redemption Square this month. Announced tenants at the 86,523-square-foot, Class A office building include Apache Industrial Services, Inc. and McCord Development, McCord Development President Ryan McCord said. McCord Development is the developer of Generation Park, a 4,000-acre mixed-use project near Summerwood.

The bottom floor of the building, which is located at 250 Assay St., has a 7,677-square-foot Jewel Box space for an upscale restaurant. The Jewel Box restaurant site also has 2,000 square feet of patio space, said Ian Adler, director of marketing for McCord Development.

“Everyone wants nice, upscale sit-down restaurants of varying varieties,” Adler said. “And we’ve taken the community’s feedback to heart, and that’s who we are chasing for the development.”

More elements of Redemption Square will begin construction before the end of 2017, including a Courtyard Marriott, a wrap-style 250-unit apartment complex often seen in downtown Houston and four restaurants, McCord said.

Generation Park is expected to feature a variety of uses, such as Class A office space, retail, industrial, hospitality and higher education. It is set to bring numerous employment opportunities to the Lake Houston area after major companies like TechnipFMC relocated their headquarters to the development in 2016.

“A lot of people are driving to The Woodlands, they’re driving downtown … we’re going to try to fix that—having a center of activity where everyone can go,” Adler said. “No matter what you want to do, there’s going to be something to do there. We plan to bring the community together.”

Thinking about buying or selling?

Contact – Sheryl Powell – Your Happy Realtor – JLA Realty – 281-753-0425

12 Amusement, Water Parks To Visit In Texas This Summer

Amusement Park Guide

12 amusement, water parks to visit in Texas this summer

By Hannah Zedaker and Abigail Loop

Everything is bigger in Texas, including its amusement and water parks. From Galveston Island to San Antonio, here are 12 ways to cool down or catch a thrill this summer.

Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier

2501 Seawall Blvd., Galveston
The Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier was rebuilt in 2012 in the exact location over the Gulf of Mexico where it once stood in 1944. The $60 million project by Landry’s Inc. combines historic carnival rides with modern theme park attractions. The pier features 16 attractions, a broad selection of traditional carnival games, several options for food and refreshments and an antique photo booth.
All-day ride pass: $19.99 (guests under 48”), $26.99 (guests 48” and up)

Kemah Boardwalk

215 Kipp Ave., Kemah
Kemah Boardwalk, situated on the south side of the Clear Creek Channel, has a sordid past and was most recently rebuilt by Landry’s after suffering damage from Hurricane Ike in 2008. The boardwalk features 16 attractions, including the only wooden roller coaster on the Texas Gulf Coast, the Boardwalk Bullet. The boardwalk also boasts 25 retail stores, 10 restaurants, an aquarium full of exotic animals and live music on The Plaza every weekend. Guests can also stay at The Boardwalk Inn or host events in the hotel’s executive boardroom.
All-day ride pass: $18.99 (guests under 48”), $24.99 (guests 48” and up)

Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark Resort

100 Padre Blvd., South Padre Island
Located on South Padre Island, this beach-themed water park is full of tropical attractions and family fun. In addition to water rides, such as Storm Chaser and Gale Force, Schlitterbahn Beach also has a seaside swimming pool, Sand Castle Cove and Bob’s Float-In Bar. The park offers a variety of dining options and also offers on-site, beachfront guest accommodations.
All-day general admission: $50.99 (ages 12-54)
All-day general admission: $38.99 (ages 3-11 and 55 and older)

Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark

2026 Lockheed St., Galveston
This 10-year-old water park has a beachfront view of the Gulf of Mexico and features thrill rides, such as the Soaring Eagle zip line, kid-friendly play areas like Torrent Beach and body slides like the Faust Und Furious. Schlitterbahn Galveston offers heated and covered pools, including the Wasserfest heated pool and swim-up bar as well as an on-site resort.
All-day general admission: $50.99 (ages 12-54)
All-day general admission: $38.99 (ages 3-11, 55 and older)

Schlitterbahn New Braunfels Waterpark

400 N. Liberty Ave., New Braunfels
The 70-acre original location of the Schlitterbahn water parks sits on the banks of the Comal River and includes four different sections. Attractions include thrill rides, such as Dragon’s Revenge and Master Blaster Uphill Water Coaster, family rides like the Wolfpack Raft Slide, designated children’s areas and lazy rivers. One of the park’s distinctive features is the Schlitterbahn West section, which is fed entirely by Comal River water and includes the Raging River Tube Chute, which shoots tubers into the river. The waterpark has an on-site resort, and although the park has a variety of food and refreshment stands, Schlitterbahn also welcomes family picnics. Additionally, the park provides a free shuttle service, free parking and free inner tubes. Schlitterbahn New Braunfels Waterpark’s season runs May 28-Sept. 17.
All-day general admission: $57.99 (ages 12-54)
All-day general admission: $45.99 (ages 3-11 and 55 and older)

SeaWorld San Antonio Aquatica

10500 SeaWorld Drive, San Antonio
Aquatica, SeaWorld’s water park, features a variety of attractions including wave pools, lazy rivers, body slides and tube adventures. The park also features macaw, flamingo and tortoise exhibits and hosts a variety of refreshment and dining options, including Mango Market and Waterstone Grill. Tickets for Aquatica are not included in SeaWorld admission and must be purchased separately. Sea Worlds San Antonio Aquatica’s season runs May 28-Sept. 24.
All-day general admission: $59 (ages 3 and older)

Six Flags Fiesta Texas

17000 I-10 W., San Antonio
Six Flags Fiesta Texas features a variety of thrill rides, family rides, children’s rides and water park attractions. Live entertainment, dining and shopping amenities can also be found at the park. New rides that are open this summer include the Superman Virtual Reality Coaster and the Fireball attraction.
All-day general admission: $66.99

Six Flags Hurricane Harbor

1800 E. Lamar Blvd., Arlington
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor is North Texas’ largest water park with a 1-million gallon wave pool and 50 acres of rides. The park has thrill, kids, family and water park rides. Shopping and dining features are also available as well as live entertainment. Six Flags Hurricane Harbor’s season runs June 2-Sept. 17.
All-day general admission: $31.99

Six Flags Over Texas

2201 Road to Six Flags, Arlington
Six Flags Over Texas is a 212-acre theme park in Arlington that first opened in 1961. The park features thrill, family and children’s rides throughout the park. New rides include the Riddler Revenge, the Catwoman Whip and the Harley Quinn Spinsanity. The park also offers a variety of dining options that include All-American, Asian, healthy options, Italian and sweet food.
All-day general admission: $59.99

Typhoon Texas Austin

18500 Hwy. 130, Pflugerville
Typhoon Texas Austin features a variety of water-centered attractions including The Gully Washer, a play park geared for children ages 3-10, The Duelin’ Dalton, which features five differed water slides, a lazy river, wave pool, challenge course and family adventure trail. A zip line tour of the park is also available at an additional cost. The park also has onsite dining options including The Burger Shack, Ray’s Pizzeria, Taco Shack and Island Shaved Ice. Typhoon Texas Austin’s season runs June 2-Sept. 4.
All-day general admission: $29.99 (weekday)
All-day general admission: $24.99 (guests under 48″)
All-day general admission: Free (ages 2 and younger)
All-day general admission: $34.99 (weekends/holidays)

Typhoon Texas Houston

555 Katy Fort Bend Road, Katy
Typhoon Texas Houston is a new water park in Katy that features rides and attractions, dining and shopping amenities and events throughout the year. The park includes attractions, such as Tidal Wave Bay and The Snake Pit—a two-rider tube slide, Lone Star Racers and a lazy river. The park also features Splash Cinema, which shows movies on Thursdays, and live music entertainment. Restaurants at the park include the River Grill, Smokin BBQ, Taqueria and Ray’s Pizza and Italian Icehouse. Typhoon Texas Houston’s season runs June 3-Sept. 4.
All-day general admission: $39.99 (weekday)
All-day general admission: $32.99 (guests under 48″)
All-day general admission: Free (ages 2 and younger)
All-day general admission: $44.99 (weekend/holidays)

Wet ‘n’ Wild Splashtown

21300 I-45 N., Spring
Wet ‘n’ Wild Splashtown is a water park in Spring that features a variety of water rides for families to enjoy as well as dining and shopping options. Family rides include the Big Kahuna, which is a raft ride, and floating along Paradise River in a tube. Thrill rides include the Big Spin, which is a funnel-shaped waterslide, and the Brain Drain, which is a seven-story slide. Wet ‘n’ Wild Splashtown’s season runs June 1-Sept. 23.
All-day general admission: $36.99 (weekday)
All-day general admission: $41.99 (weekend)
All-day general admission: $32.99 (guests under 48”)

Thinking about buying or selling?

Contact – Sheryl Powell – Your Happy Realtor – JLA Realty – 281-753-0425

Development Boom Reaches Summerwood, Fall Creek Areas

Development boom reaches Summerwood, Fall Creek areas

By Christopher Shelton

A population boom near the Summerwood and Fall Creek areas is sparking what could become a central business district for the Lake Houston area, said Mark Mitchell, president of the Lake Houston Economic Development Partnership.

In addition to becoming a retail and restaurant hub, this corridor along Beltway 8 could continue to attract corporate campuses and health care entities, Mitchell said.

Those businesses would follow large corporations, such as TechnipFMC, which relocated more than 1,000 employees and its corporate headquarters to 4,000-acre mixed-use development Generation Park in 2014. Meanwhile, Apache Industrial Services will open its 35,350-square-foot Houston headquarters in August.

Mitchell said he has seen the development of the Beltway 8 corridor firsthand.

“I lived in Summerwood for six years,” Mitchell said. “There was no H-E-B, there was no Home Depot, there was no Kroger [and] there were no restaurants to speak of.  For us, it was either making a trip all the way downtown or making a trip to the Deerbrook Mall area.”

Retail follows rooftops

Development boom reaches Summerwood, Fall Creek areasRENDERING COURTESY MCCORD DEVELOPMENT

The Lake Houston area’s population is projected to increase by more than 30,000 people between 2015 and 2020, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

The population growth is fueled by the construction of at least 12,000 new homes projected within Humble ISD boundaries between 2015 and 2025, according to a study in 2015 by demographics firm Population and Survey Analysts. 

Three developments that feature retail stores and restaurants are under construction near Summerwood and Fall Creek along Beltway 8 as developers chase a growing population that is underserved by the retail industry, SLS Properties Manager Danny Sheena said. 

SLS Properties is finishing up construction on a 24,000-square-foot shopping center in August. The development’s only announced tenant is a Smoothie King shop that is projected to open by the end of the year, Sheena said.

However, Phase II of the development will feature an unnamed 30,000-square-foot big-box store, he said.

“The area is filled with homes and apartments, and there’s just not a lot of retail to support the community,” Sheena said.

Fidelis Realty Partners is also developing Westlake Marketplace, a 65-acre retail center that will have 600,000 square feet of retail space at build-out, according to the development’s site plan.

The walkable retail development will have at least 40 pad sites for retail outlet stores and restaurants.

National grocer Kroger and discount clothing stores Marshalls and Ross Dress for Less opened in 2016. In 2017, the development will add Dick’s Sporting Goods, Chick-fil-A, Salata and Olive Garden, according to the developer. 

Westlake Marketplace will feature a pedestrian bridge that connects it to Redemption Square, a mixed-use town center in McCord Development’s master-planned commercial development Generation Park, McCord Development’s  Marketing Director Ian Adler said.

More elements of Redemption Square will begin construction in 2017, including a hotel, an apartment complex and four restaurants. Construction in Redemption Square will be completed in two years, McCord Development President Ryan McCord said.

New neighborhoods

Three residential developments along Beltway 8—Sunset Ridge, Fall Creek and Balmoral—will build more than 3,100 homes from 2015-25, according to PASA data and developer updates.

Balmoral, which will open its first model homes by the end of the year, will feature up to 2,400 houses on the 580-acre site, said Tim Johnson, director of community sales and marketing for Land Tejas Development Company, the developer for Balmoral. The development will have a 2-acre lake, free Wi-Fi throughout the community and a system of trails.

Meanwhile, by 2025, Sunset Ridge and Fall Creek are expected to produce 716 and 374 more homes, respectively, according to PASA data.

“It’s one of the last few places where you can be that close to downtown but still have the safety and security of being in the suburbs,” Johnson said.

Mobility initiatives

As development picks up near Summerwood and Fall Creek, Harris County plans to expand two north-south thoroughfares that will connect to Beltway 8 and alleviate gridlock in the area.

While Harris County Precinct 4 designs the expansion of Wilson Road, Harris County precincts 2 and 4 are working together on the expansion and extension of Woodland Hills Drive.

Wilson Road will be expanded to a four-lane roadway between Beltway 8 and Atascocita Road, said Pamela Rocchi, director of Harris County Precinct 4’s Capital Improvement Projects Division.

Meanwhile, Woodland Hills Drive was widened from two lanes to four between Beltway 8 and Ridge Creek Elementary School when Phase I was completed this year, said Amerie Reid, Harris County Precinct 2 communications coordinator.

Phase II will create a new four-lane road between Ridge Creek Elementary and Woodland Path Drive and be completed by the second quarter of 2018, Reid said.

She said the project will prepare the area for the anticipated growth.

“We did an analysis, and Woodland Hills turned out to be the single best improvement that we could make right now to relieve traffic in that area,” Reid said.

Thinking of moving to the Summerwood, Atascocita, Fall Creek area?

Contact – Sheryl Powell – Your Happy Realtor – JLA Realty – 281-753-0425

Harris County Eyes Additional Greenspace In Atascocita

Harris County eyes additional greenspace in Atascocita

The Atascocita Trails Project will serve as a guide to create more greenspace that will connect communities, businesses, schools, and other neighborhoods between FM 1960 and Beltway 8, said Precinct 2 communications coordinator Amery Reid.

The trails project will utilize right-of-way owned by the Harris County Flood Control District to create a spine trail and secondary trails, Reid said. The project is still in the early stages of development and no cost has been determined. The design of the trails plan is expected to be completed by the fourth quarter of this year, Reid said.

Increased connectivity is in-demand for residents, said Precinct 2 Commissioner Jack Morman.

“Atascocita is loaded with active families who enjoy the outdoors,” Morman said. “We’re responsive to their overwhelming requests for trails and park space.”

The Atascocita Trails Project comes on the heels of Harris County Precinct 2’s decision to create a 19-acre park in Atascocita. The property is located just south of the intersection of West Lake Houston and Will Clayton parkways and has a natural 2-acre pond on it, said Jeremy Phillips, Harris County Precinct 2 senior director of infrastructure. The county spent $4.3 million on the land purchase he said.

The County will begin construction on the $3.2 million Phase I early in 2018, Phillips said. This initial project will include a parking lot and walking trails, he said.

The park could include several trails, a boardwalk over the lake and meeting space in a clubhouse. However, Precinct 2 is soliciting community feedback during the design process.

“Our initial effort is to get something that’s a little bit different than just an athletic park or your standard playground equipment,” Phillips said.“It may be a multi-phase approach… but we’re committed to developing this.”

Thinking about moving to the Atascocita area?

Contact Sheryl Powell – Your Happy Realtor – JLA Realty – 281-753-0425 TODAY! : )

Grand Texas Theme Park Updates

Grand Texas Theme Park Updates Construction Timeline

Work to begin on Big Rivers water park in August

Construction on Big Rivers—the water park planned at the Grand Texas Theme Park—will begin in August, Grand Texas CEO Monty Galland said.

Construction on the water park at Grand Texas, which is located near the intersection of Hwy. 59 and Hwy. 242 just north of Kingwood, could be completed as early as spring 2018, he said.

The updated timeline for Big Rivers comes after another round of delays. In January, Grand Texas officials projected the park to open this summer.

Delays were caused after the water park’s initial lender backed out; the oil and gas downturn scared lenders from making large investments in Houston, Galland said. Construction delays on infrastructure projects also pushed the project back, he said.

Now, the $9 million in infrastructure projects surrounding Big Rivers are complete and lending for the water park has been secured. Despite the delays and setbacks, Galland said he is confident the project is on track.

“My whole adult life I’ve been in real estate and real estate development, and it was always transactional,” he said. “People ask me ‘Well what’s my exit strategy?’ I always say ‘A pine box.’ I will be here for the next 30 years. We bought this land for one purpose, and that was to build a theme park.”

Once construction is completed next spring, the developer will shift its focus to the Grand Texas Theme Park, a sportsplex and a factory outlet mall similar in size and style to Tanger Outlets in Texas City.

Construction on the factory outlet mall will begin as soon as Grand Texas is able to lease 60 percent of the property, Galland said.

“The water park creates another attraction, in addition to SpeedSportz,” Galland said. “The factory outlets creates a destination as well as a tax base and all of that contributes to the infrastructure being completed.”

Park elements

The Grand Texas Theme Park will feature five roller coasters, dozens of rides and an emphasis on live entertainment, Galland said. The park’s theme is based on the history of Texas, which includes Spanish, Mexican and German influences. At its opening, Grand Texas will be about the same size as Six Flags AstroWorld—the 57-acre Houston theme park that closed in 2005, he said.

Big Rivers will be a 40-acre water park inspired by Texas rivers. In addition to the theme park, water park and Speedsportz Racing Park, Grand Texas will feature several other retail and entertainment elements, such as four hotels and 450,000 square feet of retail and dining in the park’s Downtown Texas section.

Completed projects

Construction has concluded on the first two elements of the 632-acre entertainment venue, including Grand Texas RV Park and Speedsportz Racing Park, which opened in 2016.

The kart-racing park features two European-style kart racing tracks. One of the tracks hosts professional kart races and international events, while the other services patrons for everyday use.

Grand Texas also finished construction of Speed Street—a quarter-mile road that created an entrance to Speedsportz Racing Park—in late November.

The $1.2 million project is the first phase of more than 2 miles of public roads that will be a part of Grand Texas at build-out, Grand Texas Communications Manager Jessica Marquez said.

Looking to buy or sell?  

Contact Sheryl Powell – Your Happy Realtor – 281-753-0425

How To Choose The Right Summer Camp: 12 Tips For Every Parent

How to choose the right summer camp for children

Points to consider when choosing a summer camp for your child:

1. Consider whether your child would enjoy a specialty camp.

“It’s important to know a child’s personality and identify what camp programs will benefit him or her most,” said the American Camp Association website.

2. Select a camp based on your child’s interests.

Dr. Heather Domjan, interim executive director of the University of Houston STEM Center, said summer camps can help both academically and with socialization.

“It’s important for students’ interests to be matched in order for them to excel,” she said. “But it’s a chance for them to try something out on a short-term basis.”

3. Find out if your child would prefer a structured or unstructured camp.

Some children, especially when away from home, can benefit from a more structured program with a set schedule.

“Consistent routines and rules help create order,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guide, “Essentials for Parenting Toddlers and Preschoolers”. “Things go more smoothly when you and your child know what to expect.”

4. Factor in how how comfortable your child is in social situations.

“It’s more the social learning aspect. Play is a fundamental portion of development,” said Dr. Nedra Washington, program coordinator for the University of North Texas at Dallas Child Development and Family Studies program. “Children are able to learn rules, learn how to communicate, choose new friends and learn different cultures.”

5. All camps are not created equal: What kind of certifications or training do staff members receive?

Domjan said parents should look for transparency from camps.

“How is the staff hired or screened? With students who may need (medication), how is that handled? What is that daily schedule? Are the administrators upfront?”

6. Take advice from schools and teachers on what camps in the area are recommended.

7. Ask camp alumni and their parents if they enjoyed the camp.

8. Consider the cost and your budget.

“Do not be afraid to ask for a discount and ask for scholarships,” Domjan said. “There are many camps out there who are wanting to have all students participate and not shut anyone out.”

9. Consider if the camp offers healthy meals and snacks.

10. Consider how the camp schedule fits into your summer schedule.

11. Find out the ratio of staff members to campers.

It is important for parents to know how many staff members per child the camp makes available, according to Domjan.

12. Remember: It’s about fun—let your child grow in a new interest.

“Just make sure that you have to have it to be fun,” Domjan said.

Harris County Plans 19-acre Park in Atascocita

Harris County Precinct 2 Purchased 19 acres in February to Create a Nature-themed Park in Atascocita.

Harris County purchased 19 acres to create a new park in Atascocita.

By Christopher Shelton

Harris County Precinct 2 purchased 19 acres in February to create a nature-themed park in Atascocita.

The property is located just south of the intersection of West Lake Houston and Will Clayton parkways and has a natural 2-acre pond on it. The county spent $4.3 million on the land purchase.

The new park allows the county to preserve green space in an area that is experiencing explosive growth, said Jeremy Phillips, Harris County Precinct 2 senior director of infrastructure.

“We tear down trees all the time for roads. Now we get to save a few and maybe plant a few,” Phillips said.

Harris County will begin construction on the $3.2 million Phase I early in 2018, Phillips said. This initial project will include a parking lot and walking trails, he said.

The park could include several trails, a boardwalk over the lake and meeting space in a clubhouse. However, Precinct 2 is soliciting community feedback during the design process.

“Our initial effort is to get something that’s a little bit different than just an athletic park or your standard playground equipment,” Phillips said.“It may be a multi-phase approach… but we’re committed to developing this.”

Looking to move to the Atascocita area?

Contact Sheryl Powell – Your Happy REALTOR

JLA Realty – 281-753-0425