ASTROWORLD IN PIECES Want to know what new owner Michael Mallick might do with the former AstroWorld site across the South Loop from Reliant Park? It’s none of your business: “As head of a small private real estate investment group based in Forth Worth, Mallick emphasizes the word ‘private’ and won’t even say if he owns any other properties in Houston. . . .
Mallick says he would be just fine if nobody ever knew his group acquired the Astroworld site.
But word got out and his phone has been ringing for the past two weeks since the deal was completed.
‘We have a few groups that have come to us that have proposals that want portions of it,’ says Mallick. . . . He’s not sure what will become of the land, but says a decision will probably be made around the end of the year. The group might hold the property for three to five years. Or perhaps sell the entire parcel once the market turns around. Or maybe sell off the defunct theme park in pieces.” [Houston Business Journal; previously on Swamplot]
COMMENT OF THE DAY: THE EASY ASTROWORLD REDEVELOPMENT PLAN “A giant farm. Organic local produce, chickens/eggs, goats for milk. Some cows. A pavilion for events. Call it Astro Village Acres. Moo.” [Miz Brooke Smith, commenting on Comment of the Day: 104-Acre Vacant Former AstroWorld Site Is a Developer’s Dream]
COMMENT OF THE DAY: 104-ACRE VACANT FORMER ASTROWORLD SITE IS A DEVELOPER’S DREAM “Can’t wait to see the giant box rolled in and opened to reveal a strip center with: 1) Starbucks on the corner 2) Bed, Bath & Beyond 3) Borders|Barnes and Noble (choose one) 4) High-end Dentistry office not covered under any mere mortal’s dental plan 5) Wine bar 6) $6 ice cream place 7) vitamin/supplement retailer 8) standard set of strip center restaurants (Chinese, Italian, Tex-Mex deli, etc.) 9) if the place is classy enough, may graduate to having Next Tier of ethnic-themed restaurants (Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, Greek, etc.) 10) Starbucks on the opposite corner” [SL, commenting on Fort Worth Developer Buys Himself an Empty AstroWorld]
The 104-acre site of the former AstroWorld amusement park has a new owner: the Mallick Group, a development company out of Fort Worth. But unlike the previous owners, Conroe’s Angel/McIver Interests, Michael Mallick doesn’t appear to have a grand vision for the long-vacant lot. He tells Wall Street Journal reporter Kris Hudson that his company is looking into building “a number of things” on the site — perhaps medical facilities, offices, or apartments.
Angel/McIver bought the property from Six Flags in 2005, shortly after the amusement park across the freeway from the Astrodome parking lot was torn down.
THE ASTROLOT: HOUSTON’S NEWEST TRANSIT HUB Another scene from the active afterlife of the former theme park: “The 150 acre lot formerly known as Astroworld has been empty for a while, but is expected to be packed on Friday when it will be available for rodeo parking. . . . Lighting towers will be brought in and parts of the property not suitable for parking, such as areas with holes in the ground, will be marked off. There will be entrances along the 610 feeder between Kirby and Fannin and exits off of Belfort. After the rodeo, all entrances will be used as exits so all traffic will flow out of the lot. There are only about 12,000 parking spaces on the actual rodeo site. Officials welcome the new 5,000 space parking opportunity. . . . The lot is not paved and is bumpy, two factors that do not bother some rodeo patrons. . . . ‘We think it’s great that people will be able to cross the bridge and it will bring back memories of when Astroworld was here,’ [Andi Devera of the Fazeli Group, owners of the leasing rights] said. The Astrolot opens this Friday.” [abc13; previously]
One of Swamplot’s best tipsters forwards a link to a website featuring lovely renderings of a family of glassy office buildings and blocky parking garages squatting on the former AstroWorld site — along with a rather direct question: “Is this real???”
Well, the Crosswell Torian website is a real website, where the development company proudly presents its AstroWorld tower roundup under the name SouthPointe: “a hundred+ acre, transit-oriented mixed use development.” But a brand-new 13.5-million-sq.-ft. project doesn’t exactly seem tailor-made for today’s cautious real-estate market.
If the SouthPointe design isn’t real, though, it’s a brilliant parody — down to the ultra-generic name and its not-so-silent extra vowel. It expertly answers this question: How might a bunch of suburban developers — some of them from, say, Conroe — make a complete mockery of Houston’s highest profile and best connected redevelopment site?
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NEW DEVELOPMENT ANNOUNCED FOR FORMER ASTROWORLD SITE Except this one will last only 4 days and feature Twisted Sister, Broken Teeth, Alice Cooper, and Queensryche. A field day for those of you worried about heavy metals secretly buried in former landfill sites! [Houstonist]