In what is sure to be a win in the nonexistent contest for most literal development names, Momark Development this month broke ground on the first phase of the Brick and Mortar District, a 138-acre, mixed-use project that has been in the works for more than 20 years. Located northwest of the intersection of Kohlers Crossing and Kyle Parkway (FM 1626) in the Plum Creek master-planned community, the development is scheduled to bring residences, retail, restaurants, and two public parks to the area by the end of its first phase. 

The city of Kyle and San Antonio-based Cardinal partnered with Momark on the project, which will ultimately bring approximately 2,500 homes, 150,000 square feet of retail, 250,000 square feet of office space, and 35 acres of parkland and trails to the area. 

A product of public-private planning, the District is intended to be an at least partly pedestrian-oriented environment designed to encourage social interaction and public activity. The 21-acre first phase will include a mixed-use complex with 300 apartments, a wellness and fitness center, and 7,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, restaurant, and co-working space. Adjacent will be a 1.6-acre park with an event lawn, a performance pavilion, market spaces, interactive water features, a volleyball court, a dog run, and playground. The first phase will also include the 5-acre Heroes Memorial Park and a cultural trail lined with work by local artists as well as information about Kyle’s history and market spaces—all connected by a shaded pedestrian and bike trail. Apartments and retail in the first phase are expected to open in March 2022.

On the vertical mixed-use elements of the District’s first phase, Lake/Flato is the design architect, HEDK is architect of record, Kimley Horn is civil engineer, and Lionheart is the landscape architect. Lionheart is also landscape architect and Kimley Horn the civil engineers on the Verde at the Brick and Mortar (the central park area), where Water Design is the water feature engineer. Nudge Design is landscape architect on Heroes Memorial Park, where WGI, is the civil engineer, Outside the Lines is the water feature engineer, and FD2S is responsible for environmental graphics.

The city of Kyle will invest $13 million, funded through a tax increment reinvestment zone, to build the park and trail amenities in the first phase of the project. 

Future phases  of the Brick and Mortar—including a 29-acre regional soccer complex and park as well as a hotel and convention center —will take approximately eight years to complete.

The Brick and Mortar District will serve as a sort of town center for Plum Creek, which Momark began on 2,200 acres of former ranch land owned by San Antonio’s Negley family in the late 1990s, when 4,000-5,000 people lived in Kyle. The city is now one of the fastest growing in Central Texas and has a population of more than 50,000, according to US Census figures. Plum Creek has rounded out with more than 2,500 single family homes, 2,100 multifamily homes, an assisted living facility, a golf course, a 100-acre Austin Community College campus, and more than 150 acres of parks and open space. 

“The start of this long-planned town center represents a big step forward toward realizing the family’s ultimate goal of creating a unique and truly complete community that delivers long-term value and benefits to Kyle and the region,” said Megan Shannon, a project principal at Momark, which manages development at Plum Creek on behalf of the Negley family. 

Austin-based Momark has developed a range of projects in the area over the years, ranging from swanky condo buildings The Austonian and the Tyndall at Robertson Hill, East Austin’s Chestnut Commons, and Goodnight Austin, a planned community also located on longtime family-owned former ranchland.