With approximately 1.8 million people now living in West Houston, the submarket has evolved from a bedroom community into a metro area in its own right. Residents enjoy robust employment, world-class medical facilities, in-demand educational institutions in Katy ISD and the new UH & HCC campuses in Katy, varied housing options, and plentiful entertainment, retail as well as vast green spaces.
According to Avison Young’s report, Energy Corridor/Katy Freeway West (KFW) submarket has been a top performer in the office leasing activity so far this year, second only to the CBD, with more than 1,269,000 total sq. ft. leased and net absorption of 289,539 sq. ft. year to date.
Top office transactions in the region included Enbridge Inc. subleasing 292,892 sq. ft. at Energy Center V and Baker Hughes leasing 130,000 sq. ft. at Energy Center II in The Energy Corridor. Several other energy-industry, engineering and real estate companies have committed to space in the West Houston submarket in the past 12 months, including Bechtel’s 205,000 sq. ft. lease in CityWestPlace; CTCI Americas’ lease in Wolff Companies’ legacy master-planned community – Park 10; BW Energy’s 67,815 sq. ft. lease in Memorial City; and Greystar’s 68,000 sq. ft. lease in the yet-to-be-built Town Centre Two. Interra Capital Group and Fuller Realty Partners recently acquired Park Ten Place and Park Ten Plaza, respectively, also in Wolff Companies’ Park 10.
West Houston is attractive to employers and residents alike. In March, the Howard Hughes Corp. (NYSE: HHC) sold a 63-acre campus in the Energy Corridor once home to the headquarters of ConocoPhillips to Houston-based Midway. Called Watermark District at Woodcreek, the project is expected to redevelop approximately half of the existing campus into restaurants, cafes, a boutique hotel and apartments, in addition to a 100,000 square-foot fitness facility and 650,000 square feet of office space. Midway is also developing its sixth office building and a second hotel in City Centre. In May, MetroNational has unveiled plans for a 27-acre mixed-use town center west of Memorial City Mall, called Memorial Town Square. And in August, Moody Rambin broke ground on the 8-story office tower – Town Centre Two within the 41-acre Town & Country Village mixed-use development.
The multi-family market is also flourishing in West Houston. In Wolff Companies’ Ten Oaks, two apartment communities are currently under construction. Resia Ten Oaks will feature three 12-story apartment towers with a combined 576 units. The first tower is expected to open in February 2024. And, Hunington Residential is currently constructing The Vic at Park Row, a 363-unit apartment community spanning two four-story buildings. Additionally, Sueba USA is nearing completion on San Estrella, a 318-unit apartment project, while many apartment communities in West Houston have been acquired by new investors. Moreover, Wan Bridge is expanding its portfolio in Houston with Enclave at Mason Creek, a build-to-rent community just west of Ten Oaks. With 15,000 units a year needed to keep up with the demand, West Houston is bound to see continued interest from investors and growing interest from developers looking for prime employment and lifestyle hubs.
By Carolyn Dorros and Ania Czarnecka of Wolff Companies