New West Houston Business Park Inks First Deal for MAN Diesel & Turbo’s North American Headquarters

The business park at Twinwood, a new west Houstondestination for companies dedicated to research and development, distribution and light manufacturing, has finalized its first agreement to bring MAN Diesel & Turbo’s new North American headquarters to the 650-acre property.  

Located just south of I-10 between Woods Road and FM 1489, the business park at Twinwood is part of a proposed 14,000-acre master-planned community of low, medium and high-density residential along with retail, hospitality, higher education and office.  The property is owned by Houstonbusinessman Putera Sampoerna.

MAN Diesel & Turbo’s new North American headquarters, a 137,434 square-foot build-to-suit owned by Houston-based Welcome Group, will house 105,309 square feet of air-conditioned service shop space and 32,125 square feet of office space.  The Design/Build project by Houston-based KDW is slated to span one year, beginning in the second quarter of 2018.

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Agreement Between City and HUD Resolves Fair Housing Findings

The City of Houston and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today announced a joint agreement designed to expand housing choice and mobility for lower income residents, including those experiencing homelessness and victims of Hurricane Harvey.

This agreement resolves HUD’s previous fair housing findings against the city and outlines city strategies for addressing its affordable housing needs.

Among the provisions of the agreement are a request for HUD technical assistance that will facilitate the city’s ability to ramp up for the influx of federal disaster funds and ensure an equitable recovery for Houston’s most vulnerable residents. Approximately $5 billion in Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery funds have already been allocated to the State of Texas for areas impacted by Hurricane Harvey.

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Astrodome renovation plan a win-win

Love it. Hate it.

Tear it down or recreate it.

The decaying, outdated and unused Astrodome is one of Houston’s greatest cultural and architectural landmarks. The fact that $105 million now will be used to renovate the former home of the Astros and Oilers – the money finally greenlighted after years of public arguments and following the destruction from Hurricane Harvey – is also very Houston.

 Harris County commissioners voted unanimously to modernize the much-loved/loathed Dome, approving a multi-stage project that eventually will transform the embarrassing eyesore next to NRG Stadium into a venue that will house conventions, conferences, festivals and more. Of course, the once-brilliant Eighth Wonder of the World also will honor our car-obsessed city with about 1,400 new parking spaces.

Report: Apartment/commercial construction retreats in U.S., holds steady in Houston

Houston bucked the national trend for new commercial and multifamily construction projects in 2017, a report showed.

The value of commercial and apartment construction projects started in the Houston area in 2017 held steady at $3.9 billion after experiencing a big drop in 2016, Dodge Data & Analytics reported.

Seven of the top 12 markets showed declines, including the biggest markets of New York, Los Angeles, Dallas and Washington, D.C. The San Francisco, Atlanta and Philadelphia areas experienced double-digit gains in the value of construction starts, while Seattle was unchanged along with Houston.

 Dodge Data & Analytics tracked office buildings, stores, hotels, warehouses, commercial garages and multifamily housing in the report.

Local retail rent stays competitive, office prices surge in The Woodlands

Although The Woodlands area holds the reputation of being a retail destination in the Greater Houston area, local experts say the area’s retail rental rates remain on par with those of neighboring communities, while local business owners say the rental rates can be discouraging to small businesses.

In 2017, The Woodlands’ average retail rental rate was $21.76 per square foot—making the community the 13th most expensive retail rental market in the Greater Houston area, according to data compiled by J. Beard Real Estate Company’s research department through third-party data providers.

Compared with similar Greater Houston area markets, retail in The Woodlands is more expensive than Cy-Fair, at $21.21 per square foot; Spring-Klein, at $18.98; and Sugar Land-Missouri City, at $18.34, according to data compiled by Caldwell Companies.


Demand Surge Puts Houston on Top in 4Q

Houston was the nation’s leader for apartment demand in 4th quarter 2017 as a flurry of leasing activity following Hurricane Harvey drove up the metro’s overall numbers. The big surge in demand provided a shot in the arm to an apartment market which had struggled for momentum over the previous two years.

The number of occupied units in the Houston metro jumped by 13,755 in the final three months of 2017. Houston’s demand figure was nearly three times that of the nation’s #2 metro, Dallas, which absorbed 4,715 units in the quarter.