First mixed-use development in city of Magnolia to break ground this fall


Magnolia Lights—the first mixed-use development slated for the city of Magnolia—is on track to break ground this fall, Meridian Investment Realty President Pauline Thude-Speckman said April 24 at the city’s Realtor Developer Breakfast.

The five-story development is proposed for 2 acres between Goodson Road and LaRue, Gayle and Commerce streets, she said. The site plans include four stories of luxury apartments above a ground floor of retail tenants, Thude-Speckman said during the presentation. Confirmed tenants include Kilwins Chocolates, a chocolate shop with locations across the U.S., and a restaurant whose name could not be released before press time, she said.

Thude-Speckman said Magnolia Lights has already leased 60% of the 20,000 square feet of retail space. The residential side of the development is also 60% pre-leased as of April 24, she said.

Construction is anticipated to take 14-18 months.

Tana Ross, economic development coordinator and planning technician for the city of Magnolia, said city officials are excited about the opportunities Magnolia Lights will bring to the downtown portion of Magnolia.

“Multi-family [living]is all moving toward apartment style, whether that just be somebody’s need or whether that be somebody younger or an empty-nester,” Ross said. “As the market changes, we’re embracing that and looking at [multi-family living options] on a case-by-case basis.”

With 130 residential units, apartment size will range from 575-1,100 square feet, Thude-Speckman said. Prices are subject to change but are expected to range from $900-$1,800 per month, she said.

“We have gotten such tremendous traction. We’re really hoping this will be the first phase of what will be the entire development of the city’s downtown part of Magnolia,” Thude-Speckman said.

Thude-Speckman said local residents have predominately pre-leased the units due to the housing shortage in Magnolia and across the country.

“We’ve had an enormous amount of interest for more affordable [housing],” she said. “You do not get to an urban-type, high-density project until you get dead smack into The Woodlands, which is over 20 miles away. There’s nothing comparable to the project that is coming underway now.”

Although parking will be the biggest challenge for the development, Thude-Speckman said, the current plans include two multi-level parking decks—one on Goodson Road and another on LaRue Street—but plans are not concrete at this time.

“[We’re looking to promote] a community of wellness and truly bringing our city together as a whole. We want the people who live there to thrive,” Thude-Speckman said.

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  1. Hi my name is Ben Mittler, I’m the owner of Accurate Plumbing. We are a locally owned and operated company. I’m excited about the new growth of my home city and what it’s going to bring to our nice little town of Magnolia! I would love to be a part of this new project!! I think it would be an awesome thing to hear my daughter as we go into the new chocolate establishment there telling the employee we’re purchasing her favorites from “yeah my daddy built this place”. I can hear it now lol.
    Besides all of that, I know how a lot of locals act and feel about change in this small town. I believe it would ease their mind maybe just enough knowing that at the very least it is providing new projects for local company owners such as myself and more job opportunities for future employees who grew/growing up in this town. I feel it is important for your local community to have your back and stand up for what you’re bringing to this town we all love. It would make for such a nice path to go down as opposed to the alternative. I appreciate you taking the time to read this. All I am asking is to please just roll the idea around in your head a bit and provide me, as one of the locals here, an opportunity at the very least to bid on this project of which I support. If who reads this does not have the authority or position to make these kind of calls I hope you will sure pass this message down the grapevine to someone who does. Thank you again and I hope to hear back soon.

    Ben Mittler |Owner| Accurate Plumbing
    Office- (936) 701-4043
    Mobile- (832) 564-9676

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Kara McIntyre
Kara started with Community Impact Newspaper as the summer intern for the south Houston office in June 2018 after graduating with a bachelor's degree in mass communication from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. She became the Tomball/Magnolia reporter in September 2018. Prior to CI, Kara served as the editor-in-chief of The Wichitan—Midwestern State University's student-run campus newspaper—and interned with both the Wichita Adult Literacy Council and VeepWorks.
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