Corpus Christi: Mostaghasi Brothers Envision Major Live-Work-Play Development
Feature Photo: Looking west from the Texas 286 overpass at Weber Road, the farmland as far as the eye can see is proposed to become a high-end, mixed-use, live-work-play development described by its investor as Corpus Christi’s answer to Austin’s The Domain. Image: Google Streets.
by Adolfo Pesquera
Corpus Christi (Nueces County) — Two brothers with huge stakes in the city’s south side are proposing a mixed-use, live-work-play development unlike any in town–one they describe as modeled after Austin’s The Domain.
Bobak Mostaghasi, owner of VMB Equity Properties, obtained a recommendation from the Planning Commission to rezone 385 acres of farm land to Neighborhood Commercial and General Commercial.
VBX Project ID 2020-5BE0
Senior City Planner Andrew Dimas told commissioners at the July 22 meeting that no specific plans have been submitted, however, “based on discussions with the applicant, the majority use would be retail in the general commercial area.”
Staff opposed the Neighborhood Commercial requested for about 100 acres involving two tracts that would abut a future single family housing development. But the developers insisted on keeping the Neighborhood Commercial zoning and the commissioners agreed with the developer by majority vote.
Staff’s reasoning for opposing the Neighborhood Commercial in that western sector was that it would permit unfettered development of restaurant and retail uses. They argued that the commissioners should press the developer to switch to Neighborhood Office, as it would be a more suitable buffer between the dense retail and the single family.
The land is located northwest of the Texas Highway 286 and Weber Road intersection. It is immediately south of a proposed mega sports complex proposal along Oso Creek that ultimately failed, and it’s within the London Independent School District.
Bobak Mostaghasi’s older brother, Moses Mostaghasi, is owner of MPM Homes Inc. and recently obtained permission to build single family homes on almost 450 acres of farm land west of Bobak’s proposed development.
Another large tract of farmland lies between the brothers’ project and there is a third party developer, Bart Braselton planning to build a 600-unit single family community there called London Towne.
The region in orange is Bobak Mostaghasi’s project. Moses Mostaghasi is developing single family housing in the yellow region labeled King’s Landing. Bart Braselton is developing the red region.
Moses Mostaghasi said that between Braselton and his project, there would be 2,000 homes coming to London ISD, and over the next five to 10 years the school district is projected to receive from 5,000 to 10,000 new homes.
Bobak Mostaghasi said their vision is to bring to Corpus Christi the kind of live-work-play large-scale mixed-use development that has made cities like Austin, Houston and Dallas so attractive to a younger upwardly mobile demographic.
“There’s no place for people to have that elevated living style that you get in other places that attracted people to come to the city and stay,” Bobak Mostaghasi said.
Developments such as Austin’s The Domain rely on high density residential development, mid-rise and high-rise market rate apartments that are walking or cycling distance to work spaces and pedestrian friendly venues that offer shopping, dining and entertainment.
They described a project that would take about 20 years to build out. They invested $20 million to acquire the land and plan to put another $50 million into infrastructure–including a four-lane boulevard that they claim will greatly improve traffic within the commercial development and benefit the single family development coming in around it.
All roads within the development would be of concrete construction, so as to be more durable and less of a financial burden to the city as asphalt pavement, they said.
They estimate the 385 acre development will have a value of about $1.5 billion when completed.
The brothers are also in talks with the Texas Department of Transportation about ways to improve Weber Road and Texas 286 (Crosstown Expressway), Moses Mostaghasi said.
There was some skepticism expressed by a commissioner who doubted the need for such a large commercial development. However, Dimas said there is no existing commercial hub that would be able to handle the projected boom in single family housing coming to the London district.
Adolfo Pesquera (Reporter/Editor) is a veteran news journalist. He has worked for Hearst Corp., American Lawyer Media, News Corp and Freedom Communications. His work has been published in newspapers and magazines across the USA. He is a journalism graduate of UT-RGV. He writes, edits and creates digital pages for VBX.