Tomball business park lures oil field services firm

May 19, 2015

The Tomball Business and Technology Park is taking shape and has attracted its first tenant with Canadian-based Packers Plus Energy Services relocating its Houston headquarters to Tomball.

“We are very, very excited about this project and it will really set the tone and the standard for the entire development,” said Kelly Violette, president of the Tomball Economic Development Corp.

The vision of the Tomball Business and Technology Park began in July 2011, when the city purchased 97.5 acres of agricultural land at the intersection of Holderrieth Road and Hufsmith-Korhville Road for $1.6 million.

The land was transferred to the TEDC which then began development of plans for the business park.

In May 2014, the vision of the business park became reality when the TEDC and the city broke ground on the facility.

Last month, the TEDC board of directors approved the sale of 17.3 acres of land at the site of the business park for slightly more than $2.1 million.

Violette said Packers plus had acquired the assets of another company and anticipated they would also merge that company and move them to that same location. That move would expand the acreage from 17.3 acres to more than 25 acres.

“They are anticipating 353 employees total, over 10 years,” Violette said.

Packers Plus Energy Services is an oil field services company based in Calgary, Alberta, which also has their U.S. corporate offices in Houston and other regional offices worldwide. Kevin Trahan, chief technical officer for Packers Plus Energy Services Houston headquarters, said the move to a more centralized location for their Houston-based employees had been explored for more than a year before the company decided to relocate to Tomball.

“We currently lease three facilities on the north side of Houston, so as we’ve built the business here a lot of the people who work there lie on the north side of town,” he said. “We kind of mapped where everybody lived in the area and so we started looking in places we thought would be conducive to our employee’s family life.”

The development of the new Packers Plus Energy Services headquarters will be phased over a three year period with the construction of their 50,000 square foot research and development facility that will break ground this summer.

The second facility will be the company’s manufacturing facility, which will encompass 237,000 square feet, followed by their corporate offices, which is projected at about 45,000 square feet.

“The plan now is to break ground in June or July of this year, with the goal of having our first building on that property completed by April or early May of next year,” Trahan said. “We are currently in the due diligence process and going through the environmental analysis of the project so that we know what we really need to do going forward.”

Bruce Hillegeist, president of the Greater Tomball Area Chamber of Commerce, said the arrival of Packers Plus to the Tomball Business and Technology Park shows the city is a prime location for businesses related to the oil and gas industries.

“Other businesses will now start to look at Tomball seriously,” Hillegeist said. “Tomball has generated a lot of interest because of that technology park, and now that someone has pulled the trigger I do believe that this is going to (encourage) other businesses to make a move.”

The Tomball Business and Technology Park
July 2011: The city of Tomball purchases the 97.5 acres of land for $1.6 million and transferred the property to the Tomball Economic Development Corporation.

December 2011: TEDC executes a development agreement with the 2978 Industrial Properties which owns the property adjacent to the TEDC acreage

May 2012: Completed traffic impact study and phase 2 environmental site assessments.

May 2014: TEDC breaks ground on Tomball Business and Technology Park

April 2015: TEDC board approves agreement and announces Packers Plus as first tenant.

June/July: Packers Plus anticipates ground breaking.