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Fort Bend Houston: Edison Performing Arts Center to Break Ground Spring 2021

Feature Illustration: Concept rendering of the exterior of The Edison Performing Arts Center.  Renderings courtesy of Edison Arts Foundation.

Posted: 9-10-2020

by Adolfo Pesquera

Houston (Fort Bend County) — The Edison, a performing arts center that is part of a larger entertainment, retail and residential development, is expected to break ground by March 2020, according to a state  report submitted by the architect.

Located southwest of the West Fuqua Street and Blueridge Road intersection, The Edison project is a complete renovation of a long neglected retail building. The scope of work primarily involves the interior build-out of shell space for live performances and dance rehearsals.

The main theater of The Edison PAC.

The work includes installation of a 400 seat proscenium theater and the appurtenant back of houses spaces, according to a project report submitted by project architect Studio RED Architects of Houston. It will also have a black box theater, dance studio and offices.

The performing arts center area totals 32,000 square feet. Studio RED stated that this is a $6.85 million project and is estimated to begin March 15, 2021 and be completed by Oct. 1, 2021.

The owner/developer is the nonprofit group Edison Arts Foundation, which has been fundraising to complete this project for several years.

Edison Performing Arts Center Mixed-Use Development is a part of a comprehensive revitalization plan for Fort Bend and the southwest Houston area.

The Edison Arts Foundation proposed to develop The Edison Performing Arts Center as a mixed-use revitalization development project that will blend residential, retail, entertainment, and educational uses into one community creating a place to live, learn, work, and play.

The Edison PAC will be located at 7100 W. Fuqua St. on the site of the former Kroger/Willowridge Shopping Center, which has been unoccupied for over 10 years.

Site plan of The Edison mixed-use development, with theater (yellow), retail, multifamily and parking.

The Foundation, in partnership with for-profit and non-profit organizations, wills renovate the blighted 30,000 square-foot grocery store into a  Performing Arts and Culture Center. The Center will feature the Larry V. Green Main Stage Theatre and will anchor a complete community development that will also include:

  • over 33,000 sq. ft. of retail development space for restaurants, a coffee shop, apparel, boutiques, outdoor performance green space
  • The Edison Lofts: a 126-unit affordable workforce housing community.
  • The Edison Lofts will also include a high quality pre-kindergarten arts integrated program and associated art educational space. The pre-kindergarten program will be made available to the residents and the general public.

This mixed-use arts revitalization development is projected to provide over 100 full and part time jobs.

Birds-eye perspective of the repaved parking lot at The Edison.

This collaborative effort will implement public art and programs in both indoor and outdoor performance sites, while spurring the community to capitalize on the creative artists, organizations, and institutions that call this area home.

The Edison Performing Arts Center revitalization Project is a unique place making project that will transform this area known as Fort Bend Houston into a more active and resilient place while bringing much needed services to the area.

Architectural rendering of a section of the retail center.

For the performing arts center: VBX Project ID 2020-68BF.

The Foundation partnered with DWR Development Group LLC, an established developer of affordable multifamily housing properties, to construct The Edison Lofts. The apartment project was approved in mid-2019 for state regulated 9% housing tax credits

The apartment complex is a 145,000-square-foot build-out that is comprised of five three-story buildings and an amenity building, a pool and playground, and surface parking on the 5.5-acre portion situated on the west end of the apartment project site. Mucasey & Associates Architects is the project designer.