The project will be developed on 385 acres near Interstate 45 and the Hardy Toll Road.
The Irving-based oil giant revealed few details about the size and scope of the campus. But architectural documents obtained by the Houston Chronicle last year outlined an elaborate complex, including 20 office buildings with 3 million square feet.
As with any deal of this size, there are lots of moving parts. Here are some more details.
Exxon Mobil will be locating in time to take advantage of a 12.1-mile stretch of the Grand Parkway expected to open by 2015, according to David Gornet, executive director of the Grand Parkway Association.
Federal agencies have given environmental clearance for the segment and the Texas Department of Transportation is mapping rights of way and will start acquiring it later this year, he said.
Gornet said he expects construction to start in 2013 on the part of the parkway between Texas 249 and Interstate 45.
“Exxon is bringing in people from all over the Houston region,” he said. “This will help them.”
The parkway segment does not have funding allocated to it yet, said Kelli Petras, a spokeswoman for TxDOT. The state agency has, however, issued requests for proposals on how to develop that part of the Grand Parkway, she said.
The oil and gas giant owns several of the Houston buildings it will be vacating.
Spokesman Alan Jeffers said a decision has not yet been made on what to do with the properties, but here’s where they are and their values, according to the Harris County Appraisal District:
800 Bell — 1.2 million square feet; $43.9 million.
13501 Katy Freeway – 346,335 square feet; $37.9 million.
3120 Buffalo Speedway – 681,831 square feet; $40.4 million.
Exxon Mobil also leases a large amount of space in the Greenspoint area, which it will be vacating.
It will keep some space in other locations.
Harris County hasn’t committed to any incentives for Exxon Mobil’s new campus, said David Turkel, director of Harris County Community Services, which oversees the economic development division.
Asked if the county was considering incentives, Turkel said policy dictates that all such files remain confidential throughout the discussion phase until tax abatements are brought before the Harris County Commissioners Court.
“I can’t confirm or deny we have had any incentive discussions with Exxon Mobil, just like I couldn’t confirm discussions with anyone else,” he said.
Exxon Mobil’s Jeffers said the company has not received any tax concessions. Asked if the company had asked for any concessions or whether it is in any discussions, he said: “It’s not our practice to comment on discussions with governments.”
Gilbane Building Co. of Providence, R.I., and Houston-based Harvey Builders are teaming up to construct Exxon Mobil’s new campus.
Exxon Mobil would not release the cost of the project.
Houston landscape architecture and planning firm Lauren Griffith Associates is collaborating with Hargreaves Associates on the project.
The same team collaborated on downtown’s Discovery Green, and Lauren Griffith Associates was the prime designer on the renovation of Market Square Park, which is also in downtown Houston.
Purva Patel contributed to this report.
Source: Nancy Sarnoff, Houston Chroncile, June 12, 2011