Metro Chief Very Excited About Sprawl

Aerial View of Wolff Companies Projects Along I-10

Sure, Metro talks a lot about transportation in this city’s central districts. But a Houston Business Journal profile shows us Harris County Metropolitan Transit Authority Chairman David Wolff is also enthusiastic about Houston’s westward spread:

Many developers are building various types of commercial properties west of Houston and beyond.

The city of Katy, with an estimated population of 205,000, sits square in the path of Houston’s westward growth pattern.

“The whole city is going that way,” Wolff says. “I think Katy is going to be the next Sugar Land.”

He recalls the creation of Park 10, and how much the area has grown over the last three decades.

Says Wolff: “It was just rice fields. That was really the edge of the world then.”

After the jump, the METRO Board Chairman’s exciting projects way out west, plus how to get folks in the “next Sugar Land” to build freeway on- and off-ramps for your developments!


David Wolff was developing far west of Houston before west Houston became cool. His Park 10 Regional Business Center replaced 550 acres of rice fields when the project opened in the early 1970s.

Now the head of Houston-based Wolff Cos. is back in business even farther west, assembling land on Interstate 10 in the city of Katy for what looks to be his next major master-planned business park.

It’s called Westcreek Park, and it will be west of FM 1463. An I-10 location is convenient, but it needs to have the right exits. The Journal‘s Jennifer Dawson provides insight into Wolff’s seemingly effortless technique for getting all those officials to connect his development to the highway:

[Wolff] says the City of Katy also would need to negotiate with the Texas Department of Transportation on creating on-off ramps from Interstate 10 to the property. The Metro chairman may have a connection [or] two in that arena.

Lance LaCour, CEO of the Katy Area Economic Development Council, says his office has met with state transportation officials and told them how important Wolff’s development is to the city. Various funding mechanisms to help pay for the ramps will be evaluated, says LaCour.

“We would do anything we could to help advance the project,” he says.

Those folks in Katy sure are nice! And Wolff has found more gold in them thar . . . prairie:

Wolff still owns 23 acres in the 83-acre Ten Oaks site at Interstate 10 and Barker Cypress Road. Texas Children’s Hospital plans to build a hospital on 54 acres in Ten Oaks, while The Methodist Hospital System plans to build a $300 million hospital on 88 acres to the west.

“It’s sort of like having 23 acres in the middle of the Texas Medical Center,” Wolff muses. “We may hold it forever.”

Wolff has also acquired land in Brenham and near Prairie View for investment purposes, but those are not development targets right now.

Not now? Well, just wait!

Photo: Wolff Companies