Supply side: A well-rooted rumor is cropping up that Brentwood, Tenn.-based Tractor Supply Co. is planning a store at state Highway 146 and FM 646, in the far north part of Texas City. Beyond that, details were scarce.
But what is established is that Tractor Supply is bullish on mainland cities. In 2017, Tractor Supply, which caters to pet and livestock owners, ranchers, part-time and hobby farmers, gardeners, homeowners, tradesmen and more, opened a 21,700-square-foot store at 13404 FM 1764 in Santa Fe. Stay tuned.
Supermarket speculation: Inquiring readers are buzzing with questions about possible commercial and infrastructure development in Lago Mar, a 2,033-acre-community along Interstate 45 in Texas City. A 70-acre mixed-use entertainment destination, including a 12-acre crystal clear lagoon, is underway at the development. Land Tejas controls 2,000 acres on the west side of I-45. Unaffiliated owners control the remaining land on the east side of I-45.
Here’s the first inquiry: “We’re contemplating moving there as soon as we can, and we were told by a homebuilder’s agent that the frontage lot off the service/feeder road would get an H-E-B store.”
Answer: “The area in Lago Mar that fronts Interstate 45 is set aside for commercial development, but we have no firm plans yet as to what businesses might be there,” said Tim Johnson, director of community sales and marketing at Land Tejas, developer of Lago Mar. “We do think, however, that it is an excellent location for a grocery store.”
Whether it’s an H-E-B or another supermarket chain, it’s inevitable that a grocer with an upscale concept would build in a residential development that will eventually yield 4,000 rooftops on the west side alone, Texas City Mayor Matt Doyle said. Retail follows rooftops, he said.
“More than likely it will be an upscale store,” Doyle said.
But before such a development, the residential community needs to gain some critical mass, he said.
About 446 homes in the development have been sold, Land Tejas officials said last week.
Road maps: The same reader also wanted to know about infrastructure plans in Lago Mar, specifically about a new overpass to connect Lago Mar on the west side to the future Lago Mar east-side section across I-45 and a new road that would run in the back on the west side of Lago Mar and connect it with the Tanger Outlets and massive convenience store and fueling center Buc-ee’s.
Here’s what Johnson has to say about that: “The Texas Department of Transportation is working to build an I-45 overpass over Lago Mar Boulevard and Interstate 45 will have an exit for Lago Mar Boulevard,” Johnson said. “Lago Mar Boulevard will eventually extend to behind the Tanger Outlets and Buc-ee’s. Current plans call for the roadway to cross over the canal next year. The final extension of Lago Mar Boulevard to the outlet mall and Buc-ee’s is in the initial planning and engineering phase. There is no firm date for the completion of that road yet.”
Dishing it: While those in the know still aren’t confirming rumors, a city schedule of pre-development meetings reveals that representatives for Houston-based Pappas met with city officials May 31 to discuss a Pappasito’s Cantina and a Pappataco, a taqueria concept, at Pier 21. Rumors had been circulating that the Houston-based chain was considering opening restaurants in either the former Olympia Grill or Nonno Tony’s buildings — or both. The Houston-based chain is known for restaurants as Pappas Seafood House and Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen, among others.
The city of Galveston, like most cities, conducts pre-development meetings to sort through potential issues before developers apply for permits. Stay tuned.
Kastelz comeback: After six years in various hotel management positions in San Diego, Kauai, and, most recently, as general manager of the Wyndham Santa Monica at the Pier, Frank Kastelz has returned to Galveston and has been named hotel manager of The Tremont House, 2300 Ship Mechanic Row in downtown Galveston. He’ll also be the complex food and beverage director for Hotel Galvez & Spa, 2024 Seawall Blvd.
In his role as hotel manager of The Tremont House, Kastelz is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the hotel. And as food and beverage director, he oversees the culinary departments, banquet departments, restaurants, room service and bars at both Hotel Galvez and The Tremont House. Kastelz is part of the Wyndham Galveston senior management team under the leadership of Complex General Manager Marty Miles.
During his time in Galveston, he worked as director of conference services at the San Luis Resort, Spa & Conference Center and area director of catering and food and beverage manager for Wyndham in Galveston. Later, he was guest services manager for The Tremont House.
Some might also recall that Kastelz, and his wife, Becky, owned the former Speculoos Patisserie & Café downtown.