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Developers Break Ground On Friendswood Mixed-Use Project That Marks City's First TIRZ

A development that will utilize Friendswood’s inaugural tax increment reinvestment zone broke ground Thursday. 

Tannos Development Group and Wolfgramm Capital broke ground on Friendswood City Center on Thursday.

Tannos Development Group and Wolfgramm Capital are developing Friendswood City Center, a 106-acre project, with plans for 200K SF of medical and office space, 150K SF of retail, 225K SF for hospitality and multifamily, plus a full-service hotel and a 54-acre park.

The development represents a $750M investment in Friendswood, Mayor Mike Foreman said.

A tax increment reinvestment zone creates a public-private partnership that captures the increased tax revenue that comes from improving a zone and gives it back to developers to help recoup their investment.

“The money that is being taxed on the property coming up here will go back to pay for the infrastructure being put in here to establish this,” Foreman said. “I think that is monumental.”

The development site is set along FM 528, from Townes Road to Brookside Intermediate School. Tannos and Wolfgramm bought the land from Clear Creek Community Church in February 2023. 

There is about $60M worth of infrastructure work being done for the development, Tannos Development Group President Louis Tannos said. Infrastructure will include a new road and bridge connecting Blackhawk Boulevard and Bay Area Boulevard, traffic controls, drainage improvements and a new fire station.

The developers will also donate the 54-acre park within the development to the city, Tannos said. The park will have 4 miles of walking and biking trails, a fishing lake with a pier, parking and public restrooms, according to a release.

“I’ve been called crazy a couple of times,” Tannos said about the scale of the development.

A rendering of the Friendswood City Center on display at the groundbreaking Thursday

There are 12 parcels included in the commercial development and all are already spoken for, Tannos previously told The Houston Business Journal, adding it would be quicker to have multiple developers on the site than to build it piecemeal. 

The project will be built in three phases, with the first phase focusing on street-facing retail along FM 528. 

The plan includes what is touted as a nationally branded luxury hotel, with a full-service restaurant, bar and convention space capable of accommodating 500 people, the release stated. A 500-unit multifamily complex, four-story medical and office buildings, and four-story mixed-use buildings with condominiums, retail and entertainment are also slated for the site, along with smaller pad sites and amenities.

Diamond Development Group designed the project, which is the largest mixed-use development in Friendswood’s history, according to the HBJ. The project is estimated to take about three years to build.