The Woodlands is a master-planned community located in Montgomery County, Texas, about 28 miles north of Houston. It was founded in 1974 by the oil tycoon George P. Mitchell, who envisioned a community that would balance urban convenience with natural beauty. The Woodlands covers an area of 28,000 acres and has a population of over 116,000 people.
The Woodlands was originally part of the Grogan-Cochran Lumber Company’s timberlands. In the early 1960s, the company started selling off the land, and Mitchell saw an opportunity to create a new kind of community. He purchased 27,000 acres and hired the architecture firm Gruen Associates to design the community.
The Woodlands was designed to be a self-sufficient community with a mix of residential, commercial, and retail development. The community features numerous parks and green spaces, as well as a network of bike paths and walking trails. There are also several golf courses, a waterway system for recreation and transportation, and a large shopping mall.
By the 1990s, the community had grown into a thriving suburb of Houston. In 1994, The Woodlands was named one of America’s “Top 100 Places to Live” by Money Magazine. Since then, the community has continued to grow and develop.
Today, The Woodlands is known for its high quality of life, excellent schools, and strong economy. The community is home to several major corporations, including ExxonMobil and Anadarko Petroleum, and has a strong healthcare sector. The Woodlands also hosts several large events throughout the year, including the annual Woodlands Waterway Arts Festival and the Ironman Texas Triathlon.
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The Village of Alden Bridge, named after Roger Galatas’ hometown in Louisiana, was opened in 1994 and is one of the largest villages in The Woodlands. It is located between FM 2978 and FM 1488 and features three parks: Alden Bridge Park, Lakeside Park, and Windvale Park. Windvale Park, in addition to its pool, has a butterfly garden and a jogging track around the fishing pond, which is a “keep your catch” pond. Lakeside Park offers a view of Bear Branch Reservoir and has a wheel-friendly area. Alden Bridge Park is located beside the picturesque Alden Bridge. There are also several smaller parks and tot lots close to homes and neighborhoods. Alden Bridge Sports Park, on College Park Drive, is used for many local sports leagues’ games and practices.
Alden Bridge has a variety of dining options, including fast food and full-service restaurants, located close together within the Alden Bridge Shopping Center Complex. Some of the choices include Rico’s Mexican, Papa John’s, Jack in the Box, Chick-fil-A, and The G’s.
Within the boundaries of Alden Bridge, there are three Conroe Independent School District (CISD) schools: Barbara Bush Elementary, Buckalew Elementary (grades K-4), and Mitchell Intermediate (grades 5 & 6). There are also several large daycare and pre-school centers conveniently located near residential neighborhoods. Alden Bridge is also home to The Woodlands Christian Academy and St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School, two prestigious private schools in The Woodlands.
Alden Bridge has two Village shopping centers, Alden Bridge Village Center and Windvale Village Center. The Alden Bridge Village Center is anchored by a Kroger Signature store and a Walgreens drug store, while the Windvale Village Center was originally anchored by a Randall’s grocery store. Both centers feature local merchants, banks, service stations, professional offices, fast food restaurants, and neighborhood services. Kuykendahl Road provides quick access to the HEB located at FM1488 and Kuykendahl Road.
There are many neighborhoods in Alden Bridge, including Acacia Park, Alden Place, Alden Trace, Alderon Woods, and many others. The Village Associations are separate and independent organizations that provide civic and social opportunities, and the Village Board Member listings can be found on the Village of Alden Bridge Association website.