Humble City Council officially approved a tax abatement agreement with United Airlines during the Jan. 11 meeting to construct the very first global distribution center outside of airport property in the U.S.

What happened

Council members officially approved a Chapter 380 tax abatement agreement with United Airlines following a year of negotiations between the city, Partnership Lake Houston and United. Under the agreement, United will lease the 59 Logistics Center located at 17440 Hwy. 59, Humble.

Additional agreement terms include:
  • 15-year term
  • 50% tax rebate
  • $1 billion in promised inventory processed through the distribution center
  • 60 new jobs from the Humble area with an annual salary of at least $64,000
Originally, United put forth a 10-year tax abatement agreement in February 2023 with the city before requesting an additional five-year extension to the agreement in October.

What they’re saying
  • “This distribution center for us will actually fundamentally change the way we distribute parts, and United Airlines network will move to a centralized network,” said Herve Lavenant, managing director of logistics services at United Airlines. “DC-1, as we named it, will be the center of that network.”
  • “Thank all of you for your role in this long-awaited deal, the culmination of which is something that we are so proud of. It’s a win-win, and we are thrilled that United is going to be right here in the city of Humble,” Humble Mayor Norman Funderburk said.
  • “This was the first project that [United Airlines] were looking outside of airport property and chose the city of Humble to set that precedent. So it was a very big step for that company to take that step for the city of Humble," said Stephanie Wiggins, chief economic development officer for Partnership Lake Houston.
What’s next

The 509,000-square-foot facility will be turned into a global distribution center for United following a $38 million renovation by the airline. Lavenant said to council that United intends to bring a number of additional jobs outside of the contracted 60 to the project, including construction and maintenance personnel.

The projects is part of a number of expansions by United in the Houston area in the past year, including the Global inflight training center and Terminal B expansions.

Editor's note: This story has been update to correct spelling and clarify United will lease, not own the facility.