05/25/17 3:45pm

RESIDENTS NEAR SMART FINANCIAL CENTRE: DON’T WANNA LIVE WITH ‘EM, MAYBE CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT ‘EM Mike Snyder reports from a dead empty plaza at the new Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land for the Chronicle this week — utilizing the deserted backdrop for some quiet contemplation and speculation regarding the development’s likely ability to draw long-term business. So-called “destination center” projects like Smart Centre and Town Square are “a big part of [Sugar Land’s] long-term financial strategy to broaden our economic base and keep our property taxes low,” city business director Jennifer Mays tells Snyder — but Snyder and others suggest that a lack of nearby residential development may make it harder for Smart Centre to take off the way Town Square has. Snyder also notes that 900 new apartments were originally planned near Smart Centre, but were nixed on account of objections from “residents concerned that renters would increase traffic, crowd schools and damage their suburban lifestyle.” [Houston Chronicle; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Smart Financial Centre

10/26/11 2:58pm

FEEDER FARMERS MARKET Houston’s first freeway-side farmers market debuts this Friday at 3 pm in the parking lot of the HCC Southwest College’s West Loop campus. Appropriately enough, the market’s organizers at Urban Harvest are telling visitors this new market at 5601 West Loop Fwy. South “will have more of a ‘street food’ component with more food trucks” as well as locally prepared foods. The HCC campus was created out of what was originally a store for Incredible Universe, Tandy Corp.’s short-lived mid-nineties venture into big-box electronics retailing. Also beginning soon: another Urban Harvest farmers market on Thursdays, in Sugar Land Town Square. [Fort Bend Sun] Photo: WhisperToMe

12/03/10 10:31am

CAN’T BEAT THAT TOUR OF ITALY “It’s getting more competitive out here, and the better restaurants are continuing to perform well and the lesser ones are being replaced,” — Planned Community Developers’ Steve Eubanks, comparing the success of the recently opened Olive Garden in the area to the recent fate of Amici Ristorante in PCD’s own Sugar Land Town Center. Amici, which is closing its doors after two years of operation, was developed by Bruce McMillian and Jeff Vallone, son of famed Houston restaurateur Tony Vallone. Eubanks describes the Olive Garden off the 59 Freeway at Sweetwater Blvd. in Sugar Land as already “one of the top-performing restaurants in the chain.” [Houston Business Journal]