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rumor has it that there will be many cranes in town center in 2007. the rumor about a 10 story boutique hotel in market street has been repeated by a second source as well as the 17 story condo tower at waterway avenue. also, same source has heard that anadarko is considering another 32 story tower to the west of the existing one. this would be east, across the street from waterway square and on the north side of the waterway. add this to the multistory retirement community on grogan's mill at the second phase of the waterway and whalla.....forest of cranes.

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I was at the Woodlands Mall Sunday at around 4pm, and it felt strangely different than it did the last time I was in there. I almost didn't feel like I was in the Woodlands, but rather somewhere in Houston, like Northline Mall. Do the native Woodlanders just not shop there anymore? Has this mall been "discovered", and if so, why are people from Houston driving so far just to shop at a mall? Another thing I noticed was that there were way too many poser teens, and not just halfway serious, but embarassingly serious poserism. Are these kids raised by televisions and malls? They would realize how stupid they looked if they had a better frame of reference and interacted with adults more. Which leads to my question...

Does the mall really fit in the Town Center anymore? It seems like it just perpetuates the typical mall culture, and thus is not very progressive compared to the rest of the Town Center. Also, it seemed like only about 50% of the people in the mall that afternoon actually lived in Woodlands proper. When I went to Market Street, it was the same way, although there were no teen posers.

Because of the demographic diversity of Market Street and the mall, I am wondering if the concept of "town" in the town center is being lost. I really felt like I was in a true town when I went to Market Street about a year ago, but this time there was no community feel, like I was just in a place where people were coming from all over to visit. It is too focused on the retail and commercial, but should instead feel like a public space. I said once before that getting more locally owned businesses would help this problem. The layout is already perfect for local Woodlanders to relax and enjoy their town.

Going back to the mall, I just think it detracts from the "mature" feel of the town center. I think it should be redeveloped or torn down. They could expand a grid system of streets that connects to Market Street to make the Town Center look more like an actual town, then build more high-rise office buildings mixed with street-lined stores like you'd see in a small town like San Marcos. This is just an idea I've been pondering lately. Anyone else have an opinion on this?

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I think it should be redeveloped or torn down. They could expand a grid system of streets that connects to Market Street to make the Town Center look more like an actual town, then build more high-rise office buildings mixed with street-lined stores like you'd see in a small town like San Marcos. This is just an idea I've been pondering lately. Anyone else have an opinion on this?

I agree with the above except what do you do during inclement weather?

Not shop, that is what enclosed malls offer when the town center can't be used. :rolleyes:

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I was at the Woodlands Mall Sunday at around 4pm, and it felt strangely different than it did the last time I was in there. I almost didn't feel like I was in the Woodlands, but rather somewhere in Houston, like Northline Mall. Do the native Woodlanders just not shop there anymore? Has this mall been "discovered", and if so, why are people from Houston driving so far just to shop at a mall? Another thing I noticed was that there were way too many poser teens, and not just halfway serious, but embarassingly serious poserism. Are these kids raised by televisions and malls? They would realize how stupid they looked if they had a better frame of reference and interacted with adults more. Which leads to my question...

Does the mall really fit in the Town Center anymore? It seems like it just perpetuates the typical mall culture, and thus is not very progressive compared to the rest of the Town Center. Also, it seemed like only about 50% of the people in the mall that afternoon actually lived in Woodlands proper. When I went to Market Street, it was the same way, although there were no teen posers.

Because of the demographic diversity of Market Street and the mall, I am wondering if the concept of "town" in the town center is being lost. I really felt like I was in a true town when I went to Market Street about a year ago, but this time there was no community feel, like I was just in a place where people were coming from all over to visit. It is too focused on the retail and commercial, but should instead feel like a public space. I said once before that getting more locally owned businesses would help this problem. The layout is already perfect for local Woodlanders to relax and enjoy their town.

Going back to the mall, I just think it detracts from the "mature" feel of the town center. I think it should be redeveloped or torn down. They could expand a grid system of streets that connects to Market Street to make the Town Center look more like an actual town, then build more high-rise office buildings mixed with street-lined stores like you'd see in a small town like San Marcos. This is just an idea I've been pondering lately. Anyone else have an opinion on this?

This'll never happen. The mall is a cash machine. Though I haven't checked in the last year or so, I recall that it has consistently had some of the lowest vacancy rates of all malls in the Houston area...and some of the higher rents, at that. Only financially-distressed malls get torn down.

Btw, the nature of a regional mall is that it draws from a very very large trade area. If you want more of a community feel, insulated from all those other icky people from outside of your cloistered paradise, you should be advocating the establishment of a retail destination that is further from the freeway...but you're going to have to accept that whatever you get is going to be much much smaller.

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I have always found the Woodlands mall very depressing and never go. It reminds me of the small town malls in NC. I have no problems with the teens hanging out there, being posers, preps or otherwise. This is their time in life to figure things out. And its much better that that's being done inside the mall rather than running around in an outside mall late at night.

As to Woodlanders not using Market Street and the mall, in my experience you are right. Most of the people I know drive into the Galleria to do any major shopping.......I mean who wouldn't? Its a blast of reality and a show all at once. Otherwise most of the "necessity" shopping is done online these days anyway. Its such a hike to get around these parts that most people find it easier to get the size and style, or product, they want right of the net and delivered to their door. Since there are no "multiples" of the same stores up here, you will often spin your wheels trying to find a certain item.

A large portion of the concrete block has been tranformed so maybe that will continue. I really don't care either way, I don't spend time up there, except at the "Central Market" that really isn't.

Now when Churascos opens, that will pull me up there a few times a year. :P

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"A large portion of the concrete block has been tranformed so maybe that will continue."

I'm glad you mentioned this. There has already been transformation to the mall's parking lot, so there is a chance we'll see further transformations, even bolder, in the future. I think the chances of tearing down the mall are slim at this stage, but the more the area gets transformed, the more you'll have that intangible pressure to get rid of the mall itself.

I really think it would help the Town Center. They could rebuild the mall at 2978, which is experiencing tremendous growth, which would make it more accessible to Woodlanders and people in Magnolia/Tomball.

I hate to be classist, but most of the people I saw using the mall on Sunday will probably never have the desire to eat at Flemings in their lifetime. Furthermore, I hate to include human beings when I critique the Town Center's ambiance, but in order to have an aesthetically pleasing and uniform ambiance, you need to have more consistent demographics with adults over 30 far outweighing children and teens and less "takeover" from outsiders. Gosh, I really sound like a snob, and I don't even live in the Woodlands, so I guess I'm an outsider too. The way I talk about things though, I may as well be a resident.

Edited by PureAuteur
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who wants to shop in a lame disneyland like place now in days ? , I avoid driving that far up north but when ever I'm in the area I always stop at the mall , and yes its true most people who shop there are from the city, or people who are "zoned" to other malls hahaha, I hate seeing this It gets anoying watching kids walking areound the mall with one Foot Locker bag and snapping pictures like they're in Rodeo Dr. hahaha, and yes people that I know that unfortunately live in Spring/The Woodlands do drive down to shop at The Galleria, its sad in away. The Galleria does get crowded but its just a lot different

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Live Feeds from the Law Enforcement in The Woodlands!

Maybe monitoring the police scanner network LIVE! from The Woodlands will make you feel a wee bit safer. :P

Furthermore, I hate to include human beings into the ambiance of the town center, but they really ought to make Town Center more demographically consistent, which would give the Town Center a more mature feel.
Golly, how would "THEY" do this? And WHY would anyone want to? Your terminology of "demographically consistent" is code-speak for classism, and that's just wrong.
Another thing I noticed was that there were way too many poser teens, and not just halfway serious, but embarassingly serious poserism. Are these kids raised by televisions and malls? They would realize how stupid they looked if they had a better frame of reference and interacted with adults more.
Were you really seriously embarassed by anonymous strangers shopping at a mall? Why do you even care? Why are you paying so much attention to the teens at the mall, anyway? Sounds a little bit creepy there.
Also, it seemed like only about 50% of the people in the mall that afternoon actually lived in Woodlands proper. When I went to Market Street, it was the same way, although there were no teen posers.
According to your research, only 50% of the shoppers at the mall were from The Woodlands? Why does this matter to you? You do realize that just as Katie chooses to go to The Galleria to shop, there are people from areas other than The Woodlands that choose to shop at The Woodlands Mall. But, you go on to say, there are no teen "posers" at Market Street. Does this mean you bought more items at Market Street because of this? Did you buy less at The Woodlands Mall because there were "posers" there? I'm sure you'll be sad to learn that the General Manager over at Market Street was "let go" recently. He was the one who sought to discourage teens from being in Market Street after a certain time, and tried to limit children from playing in the "Central Park" area between Tommy Bahama's and Jasper's.
Because of the demographic diversity of Market Street and the mall, I am wondering if the concept of "town" in the town center is being lost. I really felt like I was in a true town when I went to Market Street about a year ago, but this time there was no community feel, like I was just in a place where people were coming from all over to visit. It is too focused on the retail and commercial, but should instead feel like a public space. I said once before that getting more locally owned businesses would help this problem. The layout is already perfect for local Woodlanders to relax and enjoy their town.
Please tell me that you understand that the Woodlands Mall and Town Center development was not built specifically to service only the needs and desires of the Woodlands-only residents. The whole concept was never to build a little "town center" where only locals congregate and shop. The rents are sky-high at these places; they are meant to draw from a very broad, diverse area. It's made to look attractive to you, so it "attracts" you. The Woodlands Mall and Market Street exist SOLELY to make money, not to just make locals feel better about there. That's just a nice by-product, but not its' sole function.
I think it should be redeveloped or torn down.
And, this is what made me burst out laughing. :lol: Yeah, that will happen, tear down the biggest money-maker out there. Right...
I hate to be classist, but...
Then, just <_< STOP!
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Okay, Pineda, thanks for tearing me down piece by piece there. I guess I'm just a perfectionist or a utopian, as reflected in my post, but more than anything, I just want a community feel. The reason I was hoping to move to the Woodlands after I got my Master's in the first place was to get away from the anti-city that Houston is becoming in the last 5 years. I guess you're right. The Mall and Town Center are just about the money, and this is a shame, because my grandparents generation would say that a town center should not be just about the money, but about civic life. I always thought the Woodlands was a return to that sort of thing, but if I'm wrong, I may rethink my desire to live there. I would consider San Marcos, TX an ideal town: dominated by locally owned businesses, an aesthetically pleasing grid street system in which the university connects smoothly to the center of town, and a town square that is completely a part of the town's culture and people, and not just some money-making project. Houston Heights neighborhood is also ideal to me, and one of the few parts of Houston where I actually feel like I'm in a community, the others being ethnic communities which might not welcome me as easily as the Heights would.

Also, Pineda, notice how I modified my post in which I don't say "demographically consistent" in the new post. I guess you were eager to jump on my post weren't you?

What would be your ideal Town Center, Pineda, and how would you deal with the Mall? You also misinterpreted my words. It's not like I was fixated on the teens at the mall. But being an intuitive person, I could get a sense of the people I was around just by being there, and poserism was rampant, in addition to superficiality and plastic looking girls/women who might be upper class, but still don't fit into my ideal ambiance for the Town Center. I don't care what social class inhabits the Town Center, as long as they are mature people. Hence why I said " hate to sound classist, but...". So, if what you say is true, that the Woodlands Mall is a regional shopping center marketing to people far outside the Woodlands, then the name "Town Center" becomes a joke and a scam. You're not getting what you think you're getting which is a community. And no, I didn't spend more at Market Street and less at the mall because of "posers", that was just an observation relating to my other point. I didn't spend anything at either, because I don't like the stores there. I prefer locally run businesses.

Edited by PureAuteur
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Also, Pineda, notice how I modified my post in which I don't say "demographically consistent" in the new post. I guess you were eager to jump on my post weren't you?

Sorry if you feel like I "jumped" on your post. I was taking a break and just pulled up that post, and couldn't believe the stuff I was reading. So, yeah, I responded, maybe a little too quickly, huh?

The Woodlands is a huge money-making machine, make no mistake. All the nice things there are meant to entice one to either move there or come spend your money there or both. The residents who have chosen to move there are what makes the difference, in my opinion.

For instance, the Woodlands schools are very nice buildings, but the teachers and administrators and coaches that are hired to work in those schools are what makes those schools great, not the buildings, not the landscaping.

The Woodlands has a host of community-minded individuals who do put the greater good ahead of profit-making schemes and these people have helped to transform the Woodlands into what it is. The homes and gardens of the Woodlands are all very nice, but it's the people there that make up the community that make the difference.

For example, The Woodlands G.R.E.E.N. organization is a fantastic ecologically-minded group that has created a great awareness and appreciation of the nature the Woodlands has to offer. There are plenty of other groups like this, set up by individuals to serve the greater good.

Would I sway you to move to San Marcos or some other little college town rather than move to The Woodlands? No, you just recognize things for what they are, and find the good, there's plenty of it in The Woodlands, just as there is in San Marcos. If you lived in San Marcos, I'm sure you'd have a different perspective of it than what you do know.

Everywhere has problems, no place is perfect. Even in your wishful thinking of the "good old days", there was plenty of problems back then, too. I don't know if there ever was an "ideal town" anywhere, and I'm not sure I'd want to live there in Pleasantville anyway, would you? ;)

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Okay, Pineda, thanks for tearing me down piece by piece there. I guess I'm just a perfectionist or a utopian, as reflected in my post, but more than anything, I just want a community feel. The reason I was hoping to move to the Woodlands after I got my Master's in the first place was to get away from the anti-city that Houston is becoming in the last 5 years. I guess you're right. The Mall and Town Center are just about the money, and this is a shame, because my grandparents generation would say that a town center should not be just about the money, but about civic life. I always thought the Woodlands was a return to that sort of thing, but if I'm wrong, I may rethink my desire to live there. I would consider San Marcos, TX an ideal town: dominated by locally owned businesses, an aesthetically pleasing grid street system in which the university connects smoothly to the center of town, and a town square that is completely a part of the town's culture and people, and not just some money-making project. Houston Heights neighborhood is also ideal to me, and one of the few parts of Houston where I actually feel like I'm in a community, the others being ethnic communities which might not welcome me as easily as the Heights would.

Also, Pineda, notice how I modified my post in which I don't say "demographically consistent" in the new post. I guess you were eager to jump on my post weren't you?

What would be your ideal Town Center, Pineda, and how would you deal with the Mall? You also misinterpreted my words. It's not like I was fixated on the teens at the mall. But being an intuitive person, I could get a sense of the people I was around just by being there, and poserism was rampant, in addition to superficiality and plastic looking girls/women who might be upper class, but still don't fit into my ideal ambiance for the Town Center. I don't care what social class inhabits the Town Center, as long as they are mature people. Hence why I said " hate to sound classist, but...". So, if what you say is true, that the Woodlands Mall is a regional shopping center marketing to people far outside the Woodlands, then the name "Town Center" becomes a joke and a scam. You're not getting what you think you're getting which is a community. And no, I didn't spend more at Market Street and less at the mall because of "posers", that was just an observation relating to my other point. I didn't spend anything at either, because I don't like the stores there. I prefer locally run businesses.

town center is simply a moniker used to detail a specified area of the woodlands, as is "the research forest", "college park", "grogan's mill", and so on. the mall is simply in the main commercial area of the woodlands. simply because the retail area of grogan's mill is called "grogan's mill village center" (or something like that) does not mean it's going to have a little "village" in it. i think that your expectation for what "town center" is is misguided. town center is bordered by woodlands parkway on the south and lake front circle to the north; i-45 on the east and grogan's mill drive on the west.

if you go to the woodlands development commercial website, you can find demographics on how many kids live in the woodlands. you can also find a breakdown of the enormous amount of people with spending power (regardless of how they look or behave) within ten miles of the woodlands town center. also realize, that the woodlands has many low income, rent controlled areas, all with a large amount of kiddos. nearly 75% of the woodlands homes have children. more than 30% of the population of the woodlands are children (approx. 24,000 kids). 20%-25% of that is teenagers. many of the teenagers hang out at the mall.

the mall circle will evolve as town center grows. by the way, if anyone is paying attention, the board members of TCID are beginning to use the words "downtown" in the woodlands or "the woodlands downtown". i think town center should be kept. however, if others have the misconception about what town center means for the woodlands, a change might be in our future.

Edited by bachanon
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I did live in San Marcos for 3 years. It was an off and on "like vs. hate" thing, but now that I'm back in Houston, I realize how great of a town San Marcos was.

There was a time when I couldn't stand the idea of a "Pleasantville", but the way Houston has changed since 2001 has led me to appreciate the upside to those types of communities.

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Thw Woodlands is a great place to hang out at. I don't see why these people on here trying to bash Woodlands? I just don't get it. The Woodlands have everything you want, and the homes there are just lovely, with beautiful scenary.

Like Pineda said, Woodlands Mall is a money making machine. Not only the mall, but the town center and market street plays a big role also. Taking the Water Taxis to each destination, as I'm snapping pictures.

One of my dreams is to live in the Woodlands one day, to raise a family there. I have other places in mind, but Woodlands is my first.

Pineda, do you know when they going to brake ground on the Waterway? It suppose to be somewhere near Town Center.

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Sorry that my quote button doesn't work. Anyways, Bachanon, to get back on topic, what is your opinion of the mall and whether it should be torn down in the future maybe 10 years from now.

To recap the discussion, KatieDidIt brought up an interesting point, which is that the mall parking lot has already undergone redevelopment to build the beginning (or end?) of the Woodlands Waterway as it connects to the Mall. If they continue with this mindset, there might eventually be pressure to tear down the mall. I'd love to see grid streets and more tall buildings. One thing I always liked about San Marcos was how it mixed a grid system in the town center with curved roads surrounding the grid streets on the north end of town.

To sum up my position:

I'd like to see the mall redeveloped or torn down in order to give the Woodlands

1) less regional, more local feel

2) more consistent ambiance to go with Waterway and places like Flemings

3) more of an urban look

4) more pedestrian traffic (if grid streets connect Market Street and everything else in Town Center)

5) #1-4 possibly leading to the development of a public transit system

6) and less poserism, riff-raff, annoying loiterers who stare at their cell phones in public, etc.

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my hope is that the mall will morph into and connect with market street and the waterway, creating and increasing the walkable outdoor areas. as for the mall being imploded, maybe in a few decades.

i don't know that you'll get a "local feel" to the woodlands town center. you may get a more international feel, however. the grid like street design/activity you are looking for is going to be happening around waterway square. six pines on the west/lake robbins on the north/marriott way (or drive) and the waterway in the middle, parallel to lake robbins and timberloch/timberloch on the south/woodloch forest on the east; this area is specifically high-density.

check out the site plan on the woodlands development listings pages for 24 waterway avenue. link

i think the posers will increase their area of activity once the pedestrian areas increase and the waterway becomes more central to overall activity.

Edited by bachanon
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You know, Pure, I really think you might be happier if you moved to San Marcos, because I can foresee Fleming's biting the dust before the Woodlands Mall ever does.

Plus, I hear there no "posers", or "riff-raff" or "annoying loiterers who stare at their cell phones in public" anywhere in San Marcos. :P

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Plus, I hear there no "posers", or "riff-raff" or "annoying loiterers who stare at their cell phones in public" anywhere in San Marcos. :P

I think it is just a novelty for teenagers to be seen with cell phones in use.

They think they are cool and like adults.

You can't avoid it.

Edited by Pumapayam
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You know, Pure, I really think you might be happier if you moved to San Marcos, because I can foresee Fleming's biting the dust before the Woodlands Mall ever does.

Plus, I hear there no "posers", or "riff-raff" or "annoying loiterers who stare at their cell phones in public" anywhere in San Marcos. :P

I think I finally figured out what my intangible ideal of the Woodlands was when making this post. I wanted it to be a combination of my two favorite cities: San Marcos, TX and San Diego, CA, which is probably why I was excited to see the Fleming's since I ate there in S.D. and loved it. I want the bohemian/locally owned business part of San Marcos with the more upscale and polished look of San Diego.

It's funny because I actually used to like the mall, but I guess tastes change.

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PA, you do know that The Woodlands consists mainly of a large middle class and upper middle class population. They far out number the upper class...and the crazy,insane wealth of the inner loop, or near inner loop, is only here in a handful. 90% of the population is comfortable this is true, but most of them can't pop over to Amerigos or Flemings to do lunch with the gals every week.

PS-You like Bohemian? Well, upper crusters aren't known for being very bohemian........Upper middle isn't really know for it either......except maybe their teenage kids ;)

Edited by KatieDidIt
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Well, yeah, I like bohemian mixed with a little bit of fanciness. Basically, I like a laid back community with a little imagination in their commercial development and lots of great locally owned places to visit.

I was very surprised they built Fleming's in the Woodlands, and I'm wondering if they just decided to give it a shot based on intuition or if there was really a demand for it. Either way, that restaurant is in stark contrast to the food you eat at the Woodlands Mall. They have excellent food, and it's totally a San Diego-style restaurant.

I'm actually kind of conservative, but I find places like San Marcos appealing. I guess the Woodlands will be what it is. It certainly needs more locally owned places, and I think that could be possible if the town incorporates, and if they redevelop the mall. They could start small, by opening just one locally owned shop at Market Street and see if it has a domino effect.

But like you said, KatieDidIt, a lot of the Woodlands residents are more the suburban type that like Pier 1 Imports and Toys R Us and Sharper Image, so any change of scenery in Market Street won't come easy.

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Sorry to be so Woodlands, but the mall is used regularly by regular Woodlands inhabitants for regular Woodands shopping. Some people come here to avoid a 1 percent sales tax. Yes, we go to the Houston malls, but very infrequently, only to get out to a different place. Market street? A nice place to also get out to some place different, but definately not the main course. It is more borng than the mall.

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  • 1 month later...

latest news. story includes details on 24 waterway avenue and other buildings around waterway square

Nov. 8, 2006, 5:37PM

Development continues along Woodlands Waterway

Local leaders unveil Waterway mosaic; want area to become regional attraction

By LAURA ISENSEE

Copyright 2006 Houston Chronicle

WORK AT WATERWAY

Thirty-plus years ago, some scribbling on a napkin outlined an area called Town Square in The Woodlands.

Now, work on and around Waterway Square is shaping up to make that Town Square a primary destination, officials in The Woodlands say.

The Woodlands Development Co. and the Town Center Improvement District recently presented the latest plans for Waterway Square, a nearly one-acre public park with 120-foot long waterwall, and 24 Waterway, a 308,000 square-foot mixed use building.

"With the latest in planning and development and the latest in construction techniques, we're developing a state of the art place to live, work, play and learn. An old cliche, but it's taken on a new meaning with what we've created here today," said Tim Welbes, co-president of The Woodlands Development Co.

As Welbes spoke before a host of community and political leaders, including Republican Texas Sen. John Cornyn, construction workers paced the Waterway Square development site to the northeast of The Woodlands Waterway and the bridge.

Developers also unveiled "At the Water's Edge," a collection of nine glass mosaic panels underneath the Waterway Avenue Bridge by acclaimed Texas artist Dixie Friend Gay.

The nine panels, created with 500,000 pieces of glass, feature plants and animals native to southeast Texas like spoonbills and herons. Many of its iridescent and 24 karat gold tiles reflect the water, tying the public art into the natural environment.

full story

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  • 1 month later...

update

TCID board receives update on Waterway Square developments

By: DEBORAH ROWE, Villager staff

12/14/2006

The area around The Woodlands Waterway continues to flourish.

The Town Center Improvement District Board of Directors received a presentation from Director Alex Sutton on the recent developments on Waterway Square at a recent board meeting.

An Asian Garden is being constructed on the Waterway itself on islands, Sutton said.

"We are installing bridges right now to connect those islands in the south side pathway," he said. "It is a contemplative area opposed to the business of the Waterway. There will be many different types of flowers, Asian inspired, but they have to be able to grow in our climate."

21 Waterway Avenue is completely built, Sutton said.

"We are finishing with tenant improvements," he said. "The Irish pub Goose's Acre is just about finished. The restaurant Churrascos just signed a lease and is beginning its tenant improvements."

25 Waterway Avenue is moving along as well, Sutton said.

"(221B Baker St. Pub and Grill) is doing its tenant improvements right now. I don't have anything else I can report on the rest of the space just yet, but I will pretty soon," he said.

24 Waterway Avenue, a 13-story building, is now under construction.

"Again, I don't have any announcements on who is going in the building, but we are very optimistic about it," he said.

The Waterway fountain is under construction right now, Sutton said, with the estimated completion date around December of next year.

The board approved a service contract with Wave Media for installation of a surveillance system along the Waterway.

full story

Edited by bachanon
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  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah, the whole area is nice around the mall, but it just seems like a psuedo attempt to make it more urban or something. It's like Disney World. People go there because it's pretty and all and then leave to go back to their secluded anti-social houses. It's fantasy in a way. I don't know what they plan to do with that small plot of land right next to the Market Street movie theater and parking garage, but a residential tower, however big would be a good idea i think. HEB is right there for them.

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People go there because it's pretty and all and then leave to go back to their secluded anti-social houses. It's fantasy in a way.

I agree that it is just an attempt at the simulation of urbanity. On the other hand, I suppose, if it is truely pretty, then that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, but would you mind explaining how houses are anti-social? I'd think that the description might better fit the person who designed, built, or bought them, if it is an accurate description at all.

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I don't mean to hijack the thread, but would you mind explaining how houses are anti-social? I'd think that the description might better fit the person who designed, built, or bought them, if it is an accurate description at all.

I guess I meant that houses tend to promote it. They surely don't promote community as much as we'd like to think they do.

And yeah, you're right. Pretty is a good thing regardless. I mean, you've gotta work with what you got, so I'm not totally putting it down. I like going there.

Edited by lockmat
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Nice summary of things to come. I am personally looking forward to the Asian Gardens. There are also bars coming in Town Square. They will "adulterize" the amenities as a whole, but actually put more night life into the area, which is a good thing, if the drivers here will clean up their act. I think they are on tap for late 2007. Sort of a local Main Street concept. I do not recall when we can expect the new fine arts facilities to be built.

Edited by woody_hawkeye
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I guess I meant that houses tend to promote it. They surely don't promote community as much as we'd like to think they do.

I suppose apartments are better at promoting community? I know that there are going to be a lot of folks on this board, particularly in northwest Harris County and The Woodlands, that'd completely disagree with you.

I live in a large Inner Loop condominium complex and only know a handfull of my neighbors by name. I've never even seen the guy that lives in the unit above me, even though he's been there for many months now. In fact, in the five years that I've lived there, I've never had a conversation with a neighbor that has lasted longer than perhaps fifteen minutes. At condo association meetings, attendence is often sparse. Aside from the officers, the only folks that seem to show up are the ones that have unresolved complaints about the management company.

At the home that I'm slowly rehabbing in Eastwood, where the predominant residential structure is the single-family home, on the other hand, I was approached on the street yesterday for a pen so that a father could write down his daughter's phone number for a nice young man that he'd met. Several weeks ago, I was approached by a neighbor out for a jog that greeted me, welcomed me into the neighborhood, and even offered her personal assistance with some repairs! The next-door neighbor, also a single-family home owner, has a constant stream of family members coming in and out of his house...he's also incredibly personable. He's helped me out on several occaisions, and we've even had full-fledged conversations if you can believe it...turns out that between us, we've met the son, grandson, and the great-grandchildren of the man that built the house that I own. The civic association also has people that (although sometimes annoyingly provincial) genuinely care about the welfare of the neighborhood.

So here's the kicker...which neighborhood do you think that I'd prefer to live in? Eastwood or a TMC-area condo? Believe it or not, I'd rather be just another anonymous resident of the TMC area...at least until I can save up enough to afford to build a sleek masterpeice of a home, and then hell if it'll fit into anything around it. Just a personality trait, really. INTJ

I've got lots of other experiences that have been conveyed to me by friends and family, and the only conclusion that I can pull from them is that the human element consistently trumps the design of the neighborhood.

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(Warning: the following post contains some elements of satire.)

Several weeks ago, I was approached by a neighbor out for a jog that greeted me, welcomed me into the neighborhood, and even offered her personal assistance with some repairs!

That was a hooker.

The next-door neighbor, also a single-family home owner, has a constant stream of family members coming in and out of his house...he's also incredibly personable.

That's a crack house.

(Warning: the preceding post contained some elements of satire.)

Just kidding. :)

Seriously, you make a good point about urban areas being much more anonymous. As for whether The Woodlands Town Center is "true urban" or "pseudo-urban", I just have to laugh at that question - "true urban" would involve hookers and crack houses. This is "new urban", from the new urbanist movement. It may seem fake now, but it probably won't after a few years.

Happy New Year everyone!

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Touche Niche.

I think it's really cool how they keep adding. How much of it was actually planned before all this stuff was built? Or do they just have short term plans every so often?

Anyone know?

There is a master plan which designates where the properties are, the classification of each, how the overall community interconnects and the vision of the community from the perspective of visitors. Details are dependent on who purchases the properties and what specific purpose. For example, the walkways may be customized for the business. Any development on any given property is limited by development covenants. Soi the answer is short term for specific projects but long term for the way the property will be used and how it fits into the community. Hope this helps a little.

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Yeah, the whole area is nice around the mall, but it just seems like a psuedo attempt to make it more urban or something. It's like Disney World. People go there because it's pretty and all and then leave to go back to their secluded anti-social houses. It's fantasy in a way. I don't know what they plan to do with that small plot of land right next to the Market Street movie theater and parking garage, but a residential tower, however big would be a good idea i think. HEB is right there for them.

there is a plot within market street, near HEB, that a boutique hotel is being discussed. not sure if this is the same location you're mentioning.

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there is a plot within market street, near HEB, that a boutique hotel is being discussed. not sure if this is the same location you're mentioning.

Probably. I don't know of any other empty plots. It's right across the street from Jamba Juice and the Parking garage. I think right now there is a small fountain on the corner of it that almost looks like a putting green or something too.

Edited by lockmat
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Probably. I don't know of any other empty plots. It's right across the street from Jamba Juice and the Parking garage. I think right now there is a small fountain on the corner of it that almost looks like a putting green or something too.

that's the one.

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  • 2 months later...

the woodlands villager annual "outlook" insert (feb 22nd) reported that the 70 room boutique hotel with retail (at market street) could break ground the third or fourth quarter of this year. also, the empty plot across the street from the hotel on the south side commons will begin construction in "february". i haven't been over there in a week or two, so i can't say if construction has begun. good news none the less.

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the woodlands villager annual "outlook" insert (feb 22nd) reported that the 70 room boutique hotel with retail (at market street) could break ground the third or fourth quarter of this year. also, the empty plot across the street from the hotel on the south side commons will begin construction in "february". i haven't been over there in a week or two, so i can't say if construction has begun. good news none the less.

Have you seen the roofs of the condos? They are sooo ugly with reflective roofs. My understanding is that the roof's color was shown to the committee and approved but they had no idea that it was a reflective material. Vision has a big gap in more ways than one.

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Have you seen the roofs of the condos? They are sooo ugly with reflective roofs. My understanding is that the roof's color was shown to the committee and approved but they had no idea that it was a reflective material. Vision has a big gap in more ways than one.

those metal roofs are very well made, they will oxidize with age and will last a lifetime. they are a high end look. i'm disappointed at all of the hoopla from villagers who aren't up on really great materials. if they are not reflecting in the eyes of passers by on woodlands parkway or blinding homes on the west shore, i think they are great.

don't get me wrong, i'm all about the "vision" thing, but c'mon. east shore is not full of forested areas, it is to be a more formal setting; giving a nod to east coast waterfront, southern colonial, georgian, mediterranean and federal styles.

the roofs will be a dull gray in time and will not be so "shiny".

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those metal roofs are very well made, they will oxidize with age and will last a lifetime. they are a high end look. i'm disappointed at all of the hoopla from villagers who aren't up on really great materials. if they are not reflecting in the eyes of passers by on woodlands parkway or blinding homes on the west shore, i think they are great.

don't get me wrong, i'm all about the "vision" thing, but c'mon. east shore is not full of forested areas, it is to be a more formal setting; giving a nod to east coast waterfront, southern colonial, georgian, mediterranean and federal styles.

the roofs will be a dull gray in time and will not be so "shiny".

I get upset each time I go by them. You have started my motor. After passing by the area for 8 years, I am very disappointed in the outcome. HIgh end maybe for the northeast and even Houston downtown, but this place is different and has been gradually and consistently architectually misguided by the yankee influence and the "wildness" of this development company. Just think, this was a place where the eagles nested and cared for their young on the grass next to the lake! Now there is a risk to anything that flies low. The development company wants to build higher rise parking garages, even in the villages. That is not acceptable. We see the area decaying in quality rather than improving. Quality materials is a perspective within. The shiney roofs just do not fit The Woodlands. Like putting together red and green exterior paint to blend with the green trees. And a competent professional designer did that? I wonder where that person came from, New York City? If the place was set in the forest away from the entrance to the community, I would be more complacent, but where it is makes it an eyesore.

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i too am disappointed at the continued distance from the original vision (which i've admired since i was eleven) we find ourselves. however, i can't help but understand that successful market forces were the promise that the original vision required to get off the ground. the woodlands has become "greater" than itself. i do not mean better. perhaps, "bigger" than itself would have been more appropriate.

it seems as though creekside will be more in tune with the original vision than sterling ridge has been. TCID is its own monster and will ultimately overtake us all. (see governance articles.)

change isn't fun but it is inevitable. i happen to REALLY like steel and aluminum roofing products, although my adoration for a great product does not overshadow my appreciation for what should have been a "hidden city".

i feel ya.

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i do not have any recent photos. i will be keeping my camera with me this next week and intend to get more current pictures.

i read that eddie bauer is opening a 5000 square foot location in market street. it is the plot across from where the hotel is going (across from starbucks and jamba juice) and is under construction. also, gap's "forth and towne" is closing. it opened in november. gap says that it had timing problems rolling out the new concept. market street is negotiating for another gap concept in its place.

link to story

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  • The title was changed to The Woodlands Town Center Developments

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