Do you know how all The Woodlands' Villages got their names?

Plato Pappas (left), The Woodlands Corporation vice president for engineering, and Vern Robbins, senior vice president for land development, were instrumental in coordinating infrastructure design and construction during the early years of The Woodlands (1973). Plato Pappas (left), The Woodlands Corporation vice president for engineering, and Vern Robbins, senior vice president for land development, were instrumental in coordinating infrastructure design and construction during the early years of The Woodlands (1973).[/caption]

Over the past 43 years since the Village of Grogan’s Mill opened in 1974, George Mitchell’s vision has come to life with the development of each of the eight residential villages that make up The Woodlands.


From the original purchase of 2,800 acres made in 1964 by founder George Mitchell, The Woodlands has come a long way.


Now home to more than 110,000 residents, the master-planned community has become a dining, retail and entertainment epicenter, dominated by the oil, gas and health care industries.


With the Village of Creekside Park in the final stages of build-out, here is a look back on how The Woodlands has transformed over time.



Village of Grogan's Mill


The original village of The Woodlands opened Oct. 19, 1974, and was named after the Grogan-Cochran Lumber Company that formerly owned and operated the land and had a mill on the property. The opening of this village was commemorated with a flag-raising ceremony and celebrity appearance by William Shatner.


Known as “the gateway to The Woodlands,” the Village of Grogan’s Mill is in the historic district of The Woodlands and is home to The Woodlands Resort & Conference Center, four Conroe ISD schools, three golf courses, and Tamarac and Sawmill parks.



Village of Panther Creek


Named for the same body of water that forms its eastern boundary as Lake Woodlands, the Village of Panther Creek opened in 1977 as the second village in The Woodlands.


Panther Creek is also home to Northshore and Southshore parks, two public swimming pools, three CISD schools and The Woodlands’ iconic dragon, formally known as “Rise of the Midgard Serpent,” as well as “The Dreamer” sculpture.



Village of Cochran's Crossing


The Village of Cochran’s Crossing opened in 1983, honoring the Cochran family of Montgomery County who co-owned the Grogan-Cochran Lumber Company and much of the land upon which The Woodlands sits.


Commonly referred to by residents as “the happy village,” Cochran’s Crossing is home to The Woodlands County Club, Palmer Golf Course, The Woodlands Recreation Center, The Woodlands YMCA-Shadowbend, four CISD schools, Bear Branch and Shadowbend parks, along with one public swimming pool.



Village of Indian Springs


The Village of Indian Springs opened in 1984 and was given its namesake for the Native American artifacts that were discovered on the property. The artifacts belonged to the Bidai tribe of the Atakapan Indians who resided in Montgomery County during the 18th century.


The village is home to the John Cooper School, Interfaith Child Development Center and eight parks; it is the only village characterized by hilly terrain.



Village of Alden Bridge


When Roger Galatas was president of The Woodlands Operating Company in 1994, he named The Woodlands’ newest village that opened that same year after his hometown, Alden Bridge, Louisiana.


As one of the largest villages, the village is adjacent to Jones State Forest and home to The Woodlands Christian Academy, St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School, three CISD schools, 25 parks and 13 aquatic facilities.



Village of College Park


The Village of College Park opened in 1995 and was named for the higher education facilities that reside in it—Lone Star College-University Center, Sam Houston State University-The Woodlands Center, and The Woodlands College Park High School & Academy of Science and Technology.


The “college town” is one of the smaller villages and is also home to CHI St. Luke Health-The Woodlands Hospital, Texas Children’s Hospital, Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital, two active adult living communities, six parks and one swimming pool.



Village of Sterling Ridge


The Village of Sterling Ridge opened in 1999, the same year The Woodlands celebrated its 25th anniversary, and therefore received its name to honor “the sterling silver anniversary.”


Sterling Ridge is home to the George and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Library, the Gary Player Signature Championship golf course, The South Montgomery County YMCA, four parks, three CISD schools and one Magnolia ISD school. The village has its own park and ride and includes the gated community of Carlton Woods, which originally was a village in its own right.



Village of Creekside Park


The newest Woodlands village, Creekside Park opened in October 2007 and earned its namesake for its proximity to Spring Creek.


The 3,500-acre village is the only one to extend across the Montgomery County line and into Harris County and is also the only village with a village green.


The village is home to the George Mitchell Nature Preserve, the Rob Fleming Aquatic Center, Carlton Woods Creekside, Lone Star College-Creekside Center, eight parks, one Tomball ISD school and a portion of the Spring Creek Greenway project.


Creekside Park is made up of 23 neighborhoods and upon completion, it is expected to be home to approximately 7,000 families.

By Hannah Zedaker
Born and raised in Cypress, Texas, Hannah Zedaker graduated from Sam Houston State University in 2016 with a bachelor's degree in mass communication and a minor in political science. She began as an intern with Community Impact Newspaper in 2015 and was hired upon graduation as a reporter for The Woodlands edition in May 2016. In January 2019, she was promoted to serve as the editor of the Spring/Klein edition where she covers Spring ISD and Harris County Commissioners Court, in addition to business, development and transportation news.


MOST RECENT

Tomball ISD board members unanimously approved the decision at a Jan. 12 board meeting. (Adriana Rezal/Community Impact Newspaper)
Tomball ISD board approves extended sick leave for district employees for COVID-19

The approval comes after certain sick leave benefits provided by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act expired Dec. 31, 2020.

The estimated number of active COVID-19 cases in Harris County has surpassed 50,000, reaching 51,362 as of the most recent data Jan. 20, according to the Harris County Public Health Department. (Community Impact staff)
Harris County coronavirus count: Active cases top 50,000

See the latest trends on COVID-19 in Harris County.

The Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District regulates groundwater usage in Montgomery County. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
New groundwater rules set to abolish previous pumping restrictions in areas including The Woodlands

The entity that regulates groundwater usage in Montgomery County adopted new rules that went into effect in September, and it will set a desired future condition, or DFC, for the local aquifer system in May.

Kairy-tate Barkley is owner and founder of French Cuff Boutique. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper
French Cuff Boutique brings personal styling to The Woodlands customers

Owner Kairy-tate Barkley said she developed the store based on her lifelong appreciation of fashion after she spent years working in the corporate world.

The Conroe ISD board of trustees met Jan. 19 for its regular monthly meeting. (Screenshot via Conroe ISD YouTube)
Conroe ISD board approves Caney Creek attendance boundary changes, 2021-22 calendar

Board members also approved spending for 20 replacement school buses and annual safety and security projects.




Courtesy Baja Sur Fresh-Mex and Tequila Bar
40 restaurants that opened in 2020 or are coming in 2021 in The Woodlands area

Restaurants that opened in The Woodlands area in 2020 include locations that offer a variety of cuisines from casual to fine dining.

In addition to vaccine hubs, there are also smaller community vaccine providers throughout Texas, such as pharmacies, that may also have the vaccine available. (Eva Vigh/Community Impact Newspaper)
EXPLAINED: When, where and how Texans can receive the COVID-19 vaccine

As Texas is still in the early stages of rolling out the COVID-19 vaccine, many Texans are still unsure about, where, when and how they can get inoculated.

The barbecue eatery is the second Killen's Restaurant Group venture to launch in The Woodlands area. (Courtesy Killen's Barbecue)
Killen's Barbecue opens in The Woodlands and more Houston-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Houston area.

Magnolia ISD board members approved additional paid sick leave and a $500 bonus payment to district employees in a Jan. 19 board meeting. (Adriana Rezal/Community Impact Newspaper)
Magnolia ISD staff to receive $500 COVID-19 bonus, additional paid sick leave

Magnolia ISD employees will receive additional paid sick leave and a one-time $500 bonus due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Montgomery County continues to see new daily highs in active COVID-19 case counts as hospitalizations rise. (Community Impact staff)
Montgomery County COVID-19 total case count increases to over 34,000; active case count decreases by 1,500

The total COVID-19 case count across Montgomery County has surpassed 34,000.

Zanti offers its take on carbonara pasta. ($16) (Andrew Christman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Zanti Cucina Italiana brings authentic Italian taste to The Woodlands area in a casual environment

After taking about 2 1/2 years to select a location and design a concept, Santiago Pelaez opened Zanti Cucina Italiana to bring authentic Italian cuisine to The Woodlands area in June 2019 on Research Forest Drive.