Infrastructure nearly complete in Katy Boardwalk District; news coming on hotel, conference center
22 Jan 2024
By: Kelly Schafler - Community Impact
More movement will soon happen at the mixed-use Katy Boardwalk District development, with Katy city officials expecting to announce the long-awaited hotel and conference center this spring.
Developer Sueba USA broke ground on the Katy Boardwalk District in 2017 on 169 acres south and east of Katy Mills, Community Impact previously reported.
Upon completion, the district will include:
- Apartments and single-family housing
- Retail and restaurants
- A hotel and conference center
- A nature preserve with trails
Two infrastructure projects will soon be complete within the district, including the roughly 2.5-mile trail system winding through 80 acres of nature preserve in early February, city officials said.
Meanwhile, the $4.7 million extension of Katy Fort Bend Road that provides access to the district is still closed to drivers; however, city officials said the road from Kingsland Boulevard to Boardwalk Drive should open this spring.
As these district elements wrap up, two others are taking off, city officials said.
A groundbreaking will take place in April for the Boardwalk Square apartments—a second phase to the existing Boardwalk Lofts, Mayor William “Dusty” Thiele said. The 353-unit multifamily development will be built at the southwest corner of Katy Fort Bend Road and Kingsland Boulevard, city officials said.
Finally, Sueba USA officials are working to secure financing for the long-awaited hotel and conference center. On Dec. 11, Katy City Council approved a development agreement amendment to allow Sueba USA more time to get hotel financing, Thiele said.
The COVID-19 pandemic created some hurdles in securing a hotel for the mixed-use district, City Administrator Byron Hebert said.
“After COVID[-19] hit, it was very difficult to get any type of hotel financing,” he said.
City officials said they hope to announce the hotel this spring, Hebert said. The Katy Development Authority, a tax increment reinvestment zone in the city, will pay about $24 million to fund the conference center, and the adjacent hotel will be paid by Sueba USA, Hebert said.
The city owns the property for the hotel and conference center—located southeast of the Boardwalk Lofts—so the city is partnering with Sueba USA on the project.
The big picture
The hotel and conference center will help attract tourism in the city of Katy, Hebert said. This will couple with nearby attractions, such as Katy Mills, Typhoon Texas, Dig World and Slick City Action Park.
“You have a conference center, [so] you’re going to be bringing in a lot more people and driving people to the area," Hebert said. "Then the overflow will help the other hotels in the area.”
Hebert said city staff hopes with the incoming hotel and new apartments breaking ground this year that restaurants and retailers will be encouraged to build in the district.