It has been years since California-based developer Monty Galland made the commitment to open a 100-acre, Texas-centric theme park in the Houston area. Tomball was initially the target area (and April 2010 the target date), but the concept has dragged on a couple of years and moved down a couple of county roads, to a no-man's land between the cities of Splendora and New Caney.
As the Tomball Potpourri first reported, Galland met with the East Montgomery County Improvement District (EMCID) on February 14, promising that Grand Texas Theme Park would bring "new job creation, money back into the county and surrounding school districts, and entertainment" to the area.
"This is a theme park based on Texas history and culture," developer Galland told the East Montgomery County Improvement District.
"This is a theme park based on Texas history and culture," Galland told the EMCID, saying there would be roller coasters, carousel and horseback riding, tractor driving, crop planting, cow milking, museum browsing, and zoo animal petting.
The development is anticipated to cost upward of $205 million, a total that includes four dining establishments, a 200- to 400-room hotel as well as two limited-service hotels, a reception hall, a chapel, a water park, a theme park, a paintball arena, and an amphitheater that will host live music spanning genres from ragtime to Zydeco.
And this only accounts for the theme park and not the larger entertainment district. It will apparently "be anchored by four primary elements, which are the theme park, Big Rivers Water Park, the Pine Grove amphitheater, which has an 8,000 person capacity, and a baseball stadium."
According to the Houston ABC affiliate, KTRK Channel 13, earlier theme park plans also called for "rope courses and zip lines that'll go through the woods and catch and release fishing, a giant maze, and obstacle courses."
Galland expects to close on a parcel of land near FM 242 and U.S. 59 by the end of April, when work will begin — at long last! — for an expected March 2015 completion date.