The Woodlands Township extended its comprehensive community services agreement with the development company to Dec. 31, 2023, in a special meeting Dec. 30, the day before the previous agreement was set to expire.
The new agreement covers areas such as streetscape maintenance, covenant administration, and joint projects between the township and the developer—which is owned by Howard Hughes Corp.—township attorney Bret Strong said.
In addition to providing maintenance funds and four parcels totaling 56 acres, the agreement provides another four years of the township and the developer splitting funding for agreed-upon capital projects at $4 million each over the time period, Strong said.
Joint projects between the township and the development company expected to take place this year include several recreation amenities as well as ongoing work to Spring Creek Greenway, board of directors Chair Gordy Bunch said at the Dec. 30 meeting.
“We have some completion of parks and pathways, [and] we have the Spring Creek Greenway recreational corridor that we have been talking about for several years to connect to the 40-mile corridor along Spring Creek,” Bunch said.
Another part of the agreement is the acquisition of four new parcels of land totaling 56 acres, Strong said. Those include a boathouse on Lake Robbins as well as land on Ashlane Way, Gosling Road and behind Bear Branch Park. The land could be used for recreation, public works or other township needs, officials said.
John Powers, the assistant general manager for community services in The Woodlands, said Creekside Park, the newest village in the southernmost portion of The Woodlands, will be the site of many of the parks and pathway projects planned in the next few years. A total of $425,654 is budgeted for completing those projects.
“There’s at least one more park to be developed in Creekside Park West, a pond detention amenity park and then the pathway system,” he said. “In addition, there’s money for the trails in the George Mitchell Nature Preserve to continue that development.”
The George Mitchell Nature Preserve currently has 11 miles of trails off a trailhead at Flintridge Drive, and another 3-6 miles of trails are planned in the Spring Creek Greenway, he said. The total amount budgeted for Spring Creek Greenway recreational corridor improvements is $465,932, Powers said.
Town Center maintenance
Under the revised agreement, streetscape services will become the responsibility of the township, whereas services were was previously shared between the developer and the township, Strong said. In its 2019-20 budget workshop in August, the board of directors allocated $1.1 million for expected streetscape expenses.
However, the township will receive a $300,000 annual contribution from the developer to maintain the streetscape in its Town Center district, which requires more detailed landscaping, Powers said.
The Town Center area includes township land from I-45 to Hughes Landing to the north and on the Woodland Parkway to the south, Strong said.
The township took over streetscape maintenance Jan. 1, Powers said.
“We’re going to ... come back to our board probably early 2021 with any recommendations of how we might change how we manage and operate streetscape [services],” he said.
The agreements were unanimously approved and took effect Jan. 1.