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The Woodlands Mall Proposes Major Retail, Hotel Expansion

The Woodlands Mall has struck an agreement with the township that could make way for an expansion including 80K SF of new retail space, two hotels and a parking garage.

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A rendering of the proposed expansion at The Woodlands Mall

The Woodlands Township Board of Directors approved proposed plans for a new open-air mixed-use commercial center on mall property as well as a request for an amendment to its financing plan with the township’s Economic Development Zone that would reimburse it for the cost of the parking garage.

At the Nov. 16 meeting, The Woodlands Township President and General Manager Monique Sharp stressed the mall is in the beginning stages of considering the project set for a 15-acre area that is now a large parking lot south of Macy's.

In total, the proposed project would include at least 80K SF of new air-conditioned retail space, a full-service hotel with convention space and at least 200 rooms, a select-service hotel with at least 125 rooms, and a multilevel parking garage of least 1,200 parking spaces.

“It can certainly be more than this, but this is the minimum,” Sharp said while discussing the plans.

The plan would be developed in two phases, according to meeting documents.

Phase 1 would include at least 45K of new retail space, at least one of the hotels and the parking facility, documents show. Phase 2 would include at least 35K SF of new retail space, the second hotel if not included in Phase 1, and more parking capacity, if necessary. 

Over a 30-year term for the project, the maximum the township would reimburse the mall would be $80M, or the cost of the parking garage if it amounts to less than that amount.

Per estimates shared at the meeting, the project could generate $180M to $275M in sales and hotel taxes over that three-decade period as The Woodlands continues to expand and attract large economic development projects.

From 2011 to 2021, Montgomery County’s population grew from 471,415 to 648,886, an increase of more than 37%, according to Greater Houston Partnership. Its growth has attracted new economic investment, including from Cellipont Bioservices, which last week broke ground on what will be its 76K SF headquarters in The Woodlands, Community Impact reported.