The development firm will look to preserve and begin redevelopment of the Imperial Char House and eventually develop the remainder of the more than 20-acre Imperial Historic District, located off of Kempner Street, the city of Sugar Land announced Dec. 1.
Sugar Land City Council and the Sugar Land Development Corporation will be considering financial support of the project as it progresses, according to the announcement.
“The city partnering with PUMA Development is a unique opportunity for our city to continue its legacy of world-class public-private partnerships,” Sugar Land Mayor Joe Zimmerman said in the announcement. “The Imperial Char House involves the special history of Sugar Land, and I’m very excited to get behind this project and promote the continued growth and success of our city.”
PUMA’s vision for the remainder of the historic district will be to develop a walkable, mixed-use project comprised of experiential retail, dynamic entertainment, unique food and beverages, top-notch fitness, multifamily and single-family residential, commercial office space, and outdoor parks, according to the announcement.
The announcement comes as the city continues to push for denser development with a diversity of housing options that will provide a stronger tax base, according to the announcement. It also comes as the char house property has about eight years before redevelopment or preservation is no longer feasible due to the building’s deteriorating condition.
“The historic district is one of the top priorities of our City Council and extremely important to our residents and our history,” Sugar Land City Manager Michael W. Goodrum said in the announcement. “Projects like this are expensive and complex, and will need financial support from the city and other available financial tools to be feasible."
The project will be a collaborative effort between the city and the development firm, which was selected by the Hunton Group, the property owner of all of the historic Imperial buildings.
“We have been working for over a year to find the right partner for the Imperial project that will do justice to the history of Imperial and the city of Sugar Land, and develop the site to its full potential,” Hunton Group Founder R.O. Hunton said in the announcement.
Public input will be available at two town halls cohosted by PUMA and the city of Sugar Land on Dec. 8 and Dec. 15 at 5:30 p.m. at the Sugar Land Heritage Museum and Visitor Center, located at 198 Kempner St. Additional opportunities for public input will be available via community meetings, email updates and public hearings as the project progresses, according to the announcement. Updates on the project will also be provided through the city’s website.