Editor's note: This story was updated to include a comment from The Howard Hughes Corp. and from Ann Snyder, chair of The Woodlands Township board of directors.
Montgomery County Precinct 3 Commissioner James Noack announced in a news release May 16 a “land swap” proposal between the county and The Howard Hughes Corp. for Grogan's Mill Village Center. The swap would involve Howard Hughes receiving the current South Regional Library and South County Community Center property, and the county receiving the Grogan’s Mill Village Center space.
After several years of talks among township officials and Grogan’s Mill residents regarding the need for revitalization of the Grogan’s Mill Village Center, The Howard Hughes Corp. confirmed on May 12 it had acquired ownership of the property and facility for an undisclosed sum. The move paves the way for future redevelopment to the property, but as of May 16 no plans have been announced by Howard Hughes regarding project scopes or timeframes. The Howard Hughes Corp. said in a statement it will work with local entities and residents on the future of the center.
Noack's May 16 news release cites local concerns over the property being used as apartment and housing space.
What they’re saying
Noack said in the release: “Our goal is for that space to not only be revitalized, but to preserve and protect it in a way that serves our residents long term. With the strong working relationships among the Precinct 3 Commissioner’s Office, The Woodlands Township and Howard Hughes Corporation, we can accomplish these big, collaborative projects.”
The news release also states the property would provide permanent spaces for a new library, community center and for The Woodlands Farmers Market.
“The revitalized center would include a permanent structure for The Woodlands Farmers Market at Grogan’s Mill and other wanted amenities to be released by Howard Hughes, in addition to the modern public library and new South County Community Center,” according to the release.
In an email statement, Jim Carman, president of The Howard Hughes Corp., Houston Region, said: "Howard Hughes has consistently communicated our desire to play a role in the revitalization of the retail and restaurant portions of the Grogan's Mill Village Center. We look forward to exploring ways to collaborate with Commissioner Noack, The Woodlands Township Board of Directors and our residents. We are confident that together we can create a vibrant center that makes our entire community proud."
Ann Snyder, chair of The Woodlands Township board of directors, said in an email: “The revitalization of the Grogan’s Mill Village Center is a high priority for this Board of Directors. Community feedback will be important to this process as well as the preservation of the Farmers Market and new public spaces for residents to enjoy. We look forward to working with Commissioner Noack and Howard Hughes on a collaborative process that includes community input. Together we will restore community pride in The Woodlands’ first village center."
A closer look
The Grogan's Mill Village Center is the oldest shopping center in The Woodlands. After losing the anchor Randall's store in 2020, the center has experienced difficulties in getting tenants to fill empty spaces in the center. The Woodlands Farmers Market was organized by residents of Grogan's Mill in an attempt to bring more attention to the center, and bring business and residents to the shops that reside within the center.