Skip to main content

8 Mixed-Use Projects Set to Change the Face of Houston

Published Oct 11, 2021 by A.J. Mistretta

1550 on the Green

1550 on the Green

A growing number of new developments across the metro region are incorporating multiple uses—from retail and office to residential and even hotels—in more pedestrian-centric designs. Developers recognize that more residents and workers want to feel connected to the spaces where they’re spending time instead of pulling up directly to a storefront in their car. That’s led to large-scale mixed-use projects, particularly in the urban core. Here are just some of the projects that are helping reshape the look of Houston. 

1550 on the Green and Discovery West 
Global developer Skanska has assembled a prime three-acre site in Downtown Houston overlooking Discovery Green. The company began construction in summer 2021 on 1550 on the Green, a 370,000-square-foot office tower that includes 7,000 square feet of ground-level retail and restaurant space. It’s the first phase of a master plan for what the company calls the Discovery West district, which will include additional retail, restaurant, and green space, creating a new destination adjacent to the iconic 12-acre park. 

East River 
East River will feature roughly 1 million square feet of commercial and residential space to be developed by Houston-based Midway in phases over the next 20 years. The first 26-acre phase of the East End project broke ground this year and will feature 360 apartment units, 250,000 square feet of office space and another 110,000 square feet of street-level retail. Amenities will include a golf course, green space, a plaza and access to hike and bike trails along the bayou. The project’s developers and community leaders believe East River will be an economic catalyst for the previously industrial site and the East End neighborhoods that surround it. They also hope it will become a communal gathering place with special events, festivals and other activities for both residents and visitors. 
 

Post Houston

Post Houston 
In November, Post Houston opens on the northern edge of downtown with restaurants, an international market, creative workspaces and a 210,000-square-foot rooftop park and garden. Lovett Commercial says future additions to the 550,000-square-foot former post office will include a concert venue and a possible hotel. Post Houston could prove to be a catalyst for additional projects on the northside along Buffalo Bayou, an area that has not experienced the same level of redevelopment activity as other parts of downtown. It could create a synergy with the nearby Theater District and reimagined Bagby Street corridor. 

Katy Boardwalk 
Aiming to capitalize on the exponential growth of the Katy area, the new Katy Boardwalk District will blend multifamily residential, office space, the community’s first full-service hotel and retail and restaurant space to create a unique entertainment district set on a 90-acre lake. The project is going up on 169 acres just south of I-10 at Kingsland Boulevard, and partners say the first tenants will be announced in early 2022. The yet-unnamed hotel will include a conference center and ballroom with an estimated 304 rooms. Katy Boardwalk will only add to the retail draw of the community that’s already home to Katy Mills outlet mall and Bass Pro Shops. 

The Allen

The Allen 
Rising between Downtown and Montrose along Buffalo Bayou, The Allen is a 1.3 million-square-foot project spanning multiple high rises. The development includes a 42-story hotel and condo tower along with a 22-story, 340,000-square-foot office building and a large-scale retail pavilion all set on a landscaped campus. Thompson Hotels, which operates luxury properties in the U.S. and Mexico, will run the 180-room hotel—a first along Buffalo Bayou Park. The whole six-acre project is estimated at $500 million. 

Autry Park 
Further west along Allen Parkway, Hanover Company’s Autry Park promises to be an “urban village” complete with more than 1,400 residential units, 350,000 square feet of office space and 100,000 square feet of high-end retail—all positioned around a central green space. The 14-acre development is set to open in three phases, with the first phase slated for completion late this year. Along with The Allen, Autry Park is one of several high-density developments materializing west of downtown along Buffalo Bayou that aim to take advantage of the waterway and its linear park. 

Midtown Innovation District  
Expected to become the epicenter of Houston’s burgeoning innovation ecosystem, Rice University’s Innovation District in Midtown is beginning to take shape. Major construction is now complete on the campus’ primary anchor, The Ion, and tenants including Chevron Technology Ventures and Common Desk have moved in. The 288,000-square-foot facility located on Main Street in Midtown is offering rentable coworking space for startups, as well as office space for corporate partners and more advanced startups. Ground level restaurant spaces will start filling up later this year. However, the bigger picture for the 16-acre district includes residential, retail, office and other uses built out in collaboration with development partners in the years to come. The innovation district has the potential to become a destination for both companies and individuals looking for a dynamic, pedestrian-oriented urban experience. 

Skanska Montrose 
Following the demolition of an aging retail strip center and a Kroger grocery store near the intersection of Montrose and Westheimer, developer Skanksa has divulged few details about the future project. The sheer possibility for the three-acre site on the southwest corner of this prime intersection makes this a transformative project. The smart money is on a multi-tower, mixed-use concept that’s likely to include residential and plenty of ground-level retail. Office space or even a hotel are also within the realm of possibility considering the size of the opportunity. Real estate watchers say whatever is planned would need to be timed with the inevitable, and long overdue, rebuild of Lower Westheimer. 

Learn more about business districts and neighborhoods in the Houston region. 

Related News

Living In Houston

'Town Square' Project Aims to Reinvent Memorial City Complex

5/24/22
The traditional American mall is changing from coast to coast, with some shopping centers facing the wrecking ball while others are being reinvented to meet the evolving needs of 21st century urban and suburban communities. Here in Houston, developers are redeveloping some malls as mixed-use commercial districts. At Memorial City near Gessner and Katy Freeway, real estate development firm MetroNational recently revealed plans to reimagine the massive 300-acre site that includes Memorial City Mall. The company will start with construction of Memorial Town Square, a 27-acre, 190,000-square-foot mixed-use project that will include local and national boutiques, innovative restaurants and health and wellness services.  Memorial Town Square aims to set the tone for a new master plan at Memorial City that will eventually include a much denser urban experience with residential units, a new office tower, coworking spaces and more. Completion of Memorial Town Square is expected in 2025.  Developers say Memorial Town Square will strive to improve the way people in the area come together, with lush landscaping, walkable streetscapes and an iconic town square vibe. Centered around expansive green space, the project will offer a variety of gathering spots crafted for lively and low-key get togethers. Visitors will experience art, entertainment, and events within a relaxed yet vibrant communal hub. "MetroNational has been working towards this day for more than 25 years," said Jason Johnson, President of MetroNational. "Memorial Town Square was designed for the community with the hope that they would one day consider it a part of their daily lives - hence the name.” Memorial City isn’t the only mall getting rethought. Baybrook Mall has served the residents of the Clear Lake/Friendswood area for decades, but in 2016 the mall got a major upgrade with an outdoor lifestyle center adjacent to the existing structure. A wide assortment of restaurant concepts and boutique stores centered around an open lawn for events and performances has reinvigorated the center that’s now drawing a new crop of new shoppers and diners. In total, the Baybrook expansion added more than 500,000 square feet to the development.  Back in 2017, Houston’s iconic Galleria shopping debuted $300 million in renovations that added a luxury “jewel box” complete with a number of high-end restaurants and retail concepts. The expansion aimed to elevate the already popular Houston shopping complex.  Learn more about living in Houston.   
Read More
Living In Houston

Upcoming International Cultural Festivals in Houston

4/28/22
Houston has long been considered one of the youngest, fastest-growing, and most diverse cities in the nation. The city is home to many cultures, given that one-in-four are foreign-born and over 145 languages are spoken in the city. The diverse melting pot in Houston allows individuals to immerse into different cultural backgrounds through ongoing events in the city. Celebrate Houston’s diversity of languages, religions, music and food through upcoming multicultural festivals in the Bayou City!   OKI: Music of the Ainu — May 4 Oki Kano, known professionally as OKI, is an Ainu musician leading efforts to preserve the endangered sounds of Japan’s northernmost indigenous people. Join the Japan-America Society of Houston (JASH) in a celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month through the Texas debut of OKI: Music of the Ainu at Miller Outdoor Theatre. Learn more. Eid Party — May 7 Eid al-Fitr is a three-day-long festival celebrated by a large segment of Arab and Non-Arab Muslims around the world to mark the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. Join the Arab American Cultural and Community Center for celebrations that include special morning prayers, food and other activities. Learn more. Naija Beats Cultural Festival — May 20 Naija Beats Cultural Festival celebrates Nigerian culture and tradition to connect families back to their roots and immerse world travelers to this open culture. Learn to Japa and Gbese from the best Nigerian dancers while enjoying delicious Jollof and Suya. Learn more. Texas Haitian Flag Day Picnic — May 20 As the Haitian population in Houston grew, the community wanted a more unified voice and representation to help strengthen the region. Texas Haitian Flag Day Picnic promotes and uplifts Haitian culture through delicious food trucks and caterers, activities for the family and great music from multiple Haitian DJs. Learn more. The Taste of Louisiana 2022 — May 21 Enjoy some of the best Louisiana and International cuisine from vendors near and far. This perfect outdoor festival gives you a taste of Zydeco live music while enjoying authentic Creole crawfish and jambalaya. Learn more. The International Festival USA — May 28 The globally acclaimed International Festival of Tradition and Culture is the premier international and multicultural festival known for bringing a variety of unique and emerging cultures to one place. The festival is dedicated to cultivating and educating the world, creating a platform to share cultural heritage through dance, culinary and a marketplace. Learn more. AsiaFest 2022 — June 11 The Asia Society Texas Center presents the 10th annual AsiaFest incorporating cultural dances, performances, crafts and authentic cuisine from across Asia. Celebrate the vibrant diversity of Asia through music and dance featuring featuring Anjali Dance Group (India), Dance of Asian America (China), Gamelan of the New Moon (Indonesia), Iranian Cultural Foundation (Iran) and many more. Learn more. 3rd Annual Juneteenth Celebration — June 19 Presented by BLCK Market, the annual Juneteenth Celebration demonstrates the talent of more than 100 small Black business owners and entrepreneurs through the products provided in the marketplace. These products come from the hands and minds of talented individuals from all corners of the world, representing their culture, accompanied by live music and food trucks. Learn more. Houston Caribbean Festival — July 3 The Houston Caribbean Festival is an annual Caribbean Carnival that is all about celebrating music, food and different cultures! Pride and optimism are the hallmarks that drive the world-renowned event known for its colorful, memorable and compelling parades filled with creative and talented masquerades and marching bands. Learn more.   Learn more about Houston’s global ties during the Partnership’s International Business Month in May.
Read More

Related Events

Demography

Houston Facts

The Greater Houston Partnership's Research team will provide an overview of Houston Facts, an annual Partnership publication that provides information on the Houston region. For this event, each member of the…

Learn More
Learn More