The Ralph Bivins Project – Podcast Guest Carolyn Wolff Dorros

RALPH BIVINS: Welcome to the Ralph Bivins Project. We’re glad to be with Carolyn Wolff Dorros with the Wolff Companies, a major development firm here based in Houston. Welcome, Carolyn. Glad you’re here.

CAROLYN WOLFF DORROS: Glad to be here.

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RALPH BIVINS: You guys have said that there’s maybe a corridor coming out of the northwest part of Houston, what a lot of people call Highway 290, and it’s kind of developed a lot and your firm has been a part of that in the last few years. Tell us about why things are going so well? Why are things so strong on Highway 290 now?

CAROLYN WOLFF DORROS: I think as every Houstonian knows, 290 was under construction for almost 10 years and recently opened three years ago as a new major freeway, drastically reducing the time it would take to get from central Houston all the way out to Waller Highway 6. That, coupled with the completion of the Grand Parkway, which made it not only accessible from the center of Houston, but also from points north and south, really just changed how close northwest Houston was to the rest of Houston.

We have been investing in Waller County out on 290. Waller County, specifically, is a very business-friendly environment. I love Houston, but it’s gotten increasingly difficult to build in given the time it takes to get permits and all the rules and regulations. Waller has made it very clear that they are welcoming to new businesses and to growth. The other thing that is really important and unfortunately has really been brought into focus in the last few years is the school districts. HISD has had a terrible time in the last five years, all the leadership changes and crisis after crisis. One of the things that fueled the growth in Katy was Katy ISD. Waller ISD is also known as being a very good school district. They started out with one high school, they recently completed a second high school, and they’re looking to add almost 25 percent to their student population over the next few years. That attracts, between the transportation, the business friendliness, the good education, people out to that area.

On I-10 right now, there are still large tracts of land that are available. When you finally get large tracts of land, you can really develop them in a thoughtful way. You can implement a MUD, but you can also control the overall environment. It can be really a big step change for an area, and we’re hoping that Beacon Hill will be the same sort of step change for Waller that Park 10 was for I-10.

RALPH BIVINS: Beacon Hill, that’s almost 600 acres you guys have acquired there on Highway 290 down the edge of Waller. What’s the status of that project?

CAROLYN WOLFF DORROS: Beacon Hill is 587 acres out in Waller. We’ve spent about $20 million to date putting in the infrastructure. It has a City of Waller sanitary sewer, which is really important out in that area. There are some large tracts of land available, but they don’t have access to utilities and certainly don’t have access to high-quality utilities. You don’t want to put a million square foot industrial plant on a septic tank, that’s for sure. We’ve been able to put in some basic infrastructure. We’ve already completed Beacon Hill Boulevard down from Owens Road to the freeway. As of the beginning of this year, we’ve started the TxDot project where we are building an exit ramp off of 292 and Beacon Hill Boulevard as well, as a frontage road which will connect that exit road through to James R. Muse.

Click Here (Spotify) or Click Here (You Tube) to Listen to the entire podcast

Carolyn Wolff Dorros biography

Carolyn Wolff Dorros serves as the executive vice president of Wolff Companies. She works on the oversight and management of the company’s financial asset portfolios as well as strategic planning, marketing, and communications. Prior to joining Wolff Companies, Dorros worked at Stanford Medical Center as the administrative director of neurosciences, where she also served as director of business development.

May 6, 2024 Realty News Report Copyright 2024


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