Harris County commissioners to deliberate Woodridge Village purchase in April 7 executive session
Figure Four Partners, a subsidiary of Perry Homes, has offered to let government partners purchase Woodridge Village, a 268-acre development that Kingwood residents allege caused flooding in their communities, such as Elm Grove Village. (Kelly Schafler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Woodridge Village is a 268-acre residential development from Figure Four Partners—a subsidiary of Perry Homes—accused of causing flooding in Kingwood neighborhoods, such as Elm Grove Village, in a May rainstorm and during Tropical Storm Imelda in September.
Joe Stinebaker, the director of communications for Harris County Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle’s office, said commissioners will discuss whether the county will participate in the land purchase for flood mitigation purposes.
"I cannot and would not try to predict what would come out of this executive session, but it at least gives the five court members a chance to discuss it," he said.
This deliberation comes more than a month after Figure Four Partners issued a news release March 4 stating that Harris County and city of Houston officials had until March 31 to decide whether the entities wanted to purchase the land. If the entities did come to a decision by March 31, the developer would continue construction on the property or sell it to another developer, according to the release.
Figure Four Partners originally set the property price to $14.02 million, which was reportedly $9 million less than the developer could sell it to another private company. Stinebaker said the price has now been reduced to $10 million.
He said potential outcomes from the executive session include commissioners taking no action or commissioners agreeing to pay all, none or some of the property price. The county could use funds from the $2.5 billion flood infrastructure bond approved by voters in August 2018 to purchase the property.
"It's literally the entire spectrum from 'Nope, we're not going to do anything,' to 'Yes, we're going to do it,' to everything in the middle, which is 'We're going to continue to pursue our partnership with the city,'" he said.
Stinebaker said that due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, Houston Mayor Pro Tem Dave Martin was going to ask Figure Four Partners for an extension on negotiations.
Martin did not wish to comment on questions regarding if the city of Houston had requested an extension or whether the city had reconsidered partnering with Harris County to purchase the property. However, Martin's office did provide Community Impact Newspaper with a statement about ongoing negotiations.
"We have been in constant communication with the Perry Homes legal team, Commissioner Cagle and his office, and State Representative Dan Huberty and his staff. Negotiations are ongoing," the statement read.
Community Impact Newspaper reached out to Figure Four Partners for comments now that the March 31 deadline has passed. A spokesperson for the company said there is no new information beyond a March 16 news release stating the company would add funds spent after March 31 to the purchase price.