Letter from Ralph Rieger, Chairman of the Board

March 16, 2017 • Continue Reading »

Whenever the calendar turns from one year to another, there is celebration, reflection, planning, and anticipation. The Brays Oaks Management District board of directors has had a unique opportunity to plan for the improvement and the future of our community. We’ve had a chance to reflect on and celebrate the accomplishments of the previous year, and we’re ready to dig into 2017, anticipating many more successful initiatives to come.

One of the issues that has riveted our focus has been resolving the drainage and flooding issues that affect the neighborhoods along Brays Bayou. As we have studied the watershed problem––both within our own District and in neighboring areas – we’ve also shared what we’ve learned with the community to arrive at holistic solutions. In 2016, the District created an infrastructure committee to examine the root causes of the flooding problems and hired the civil engineering firm, Cobb Fendley, to propose projects to help alleviate it.

Less flooding more greenspace! The Brays Oaks Management District is supportive of flood mitigation projects on the Brays Bayou Watershed protecting homes and business from flooding.  The leadership provided by the management district will continue to advocate for dual use facilities that combined resources from the city, county, state and federal government to prevent flooding. 

The Willow Waterhole Stormwater Detention Basin is designed to hold water during heavy rainfall to reduce peak flows in the channel that can cause flooding. Upon completion, the basin will hold approximately 600 million gallons of stormwater. In addition, the basin project will offer 279 acres of usable greenspace for the nearby community. The most recent news is that, in mid-December, the City of Houston approved plans for the construction of the Levitt Pavilion at Willow Waterhole––an ideal venue for music concerts and other performances, scheduled for completion in 2019. The District took a leadership role with the Willow Waterhole Greenspace Conservancy (WWGC) on this project which was more than five years in the making and we are extremely proud of our role in helping lead this effort.

While too much water can obviously be a problem for homeowners along the bayou, water is also a desirable and attractive environmental feature. We’re very fortunate to have a place as unique as the Willow Waterhole Greenspace right here in our own back yard. As a destination for nature lovers, birders, hikers, joggers, sports and music enthusiasts, this jewel we enjoy is still virtually unknown to most of the rest of the city––but that’s gradually changing.

The District has been actively involved in helping the Willow Waterhole Conservancy achieve the completion of a $399,999 grant that will fund significant projects. We’ve also helped support tree planting and the development of trails that everyone can enjoy.

Your management district is not only committed to these projects, but also to public safety, education, beautification projects, and economic development, as these are key factors in the continued development of a great community.

We have seen the successful use of security cameras to abate crime in specific trouble spots, and have supported National Night Out events to familiarize neighbors with each other and with local law enforcement.

To help our neighborhood schools, Brays Oaks has supported scholarships, after-school programs, transportation programs, and educational field trips. And in May we celebrated the dedication of the new Houston Community College Brays Oaks workforce center on West Bellfort – a $12 million project offering 28,000 square feet for classrooms, labs, offices, and conference space.

The District has also had a voice at the table during the planning of the Fondren Reconstruction Project, representing the interests of residents and businesses affected by this construction. Meanwhile, our beautification efforts have included lighting projects, esplanade improvements, and identifying markers.

Finally, we’re talking to local businesses and developers about ways to improve our commercial centers, as well as becoming more proactive about recruiting new businesses. We are confident this will help raise the profile of our shopping centers, draw in customers and patrons from outside the area, and help create new job opportunities right here in Brays Oaks.

We hope you are as excited about all these endeavors as we are, and will continue to celebrate the evolution of this unique community in the coming year. 


Ralph Rieger, CPA, CGMA

Chairman, Brays Oaks Management District Board of Directors




Two New Subdivisions In the Works for Brays Oaks

March 16, 2017 • Continue Reading »

Two new subdivisions are currently under construction in the Brays Oaks District, a long-hidden gem in the southwest of Houston. Both developments, the Venician and Netivot Braeswood, are taking advantage of the area’s convenient access to Beltway 8 and close proximity to the Texas Medical Center, the Uptown/Galleria area, and Sugar Land.

The Venician, a 9.5-acre planned community, is in development from AC Home on the west side of South Gessner, north of West Bellfort. AC Home acquired the property in December, 2015, and contracted American Citigroup Construction to do a site plan for the new community, which will include a landscaped detention pond. The Venician will consist of 99 new homes with a variety of floor plans, including 2BR 2B 1-story, 3BR 2 or 2.5B 2-story, and 4BR 2.5 or 3B 2-story homes, ranging from 1,250–1,650 SF and priced affordably for new buyers between $170,000 and $240,000. Lot frontages will average around 37 feet, similar to many of the new communities being built throughout Houston. Construction is underway on the first 37 homes, with another 14 to follow. Andrew Kottlowski, project manager for AC Home, expects to complete the project within two to three years. 

In contrast, the Netivot Braeswood hopes to cater to a more upscale homebuyer. KinghornDriverHough (KDH) is developing the 12-home project on the southwest corner of South Braeswood and Glenfield, just west of Hillcroft. This small, single-family home community is situated on a one-acre parcel, purchased from MC Management & Development, Inc. in 2015 by Netivot LLC. Development will be high density, featuring 3-story homes with shared driveways priced above $500,000. 

The Brays Oaks District is happy to see these projects break ground. The District believes they will not only support existing retail and restaurants in Brays Oaks, but also aid in the District’s ongoing efforts to bring new businesses into the community.

Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – Spring 2014

April 1, 2014 • Continue Reading »


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Greetings from the Brays Oaks Management District! It’s been my pleasure to serve as chairman of the board of directors for the past nine months and, during that time, I’ve been pleased to see how much progress we’ve made as a team in working with residents and the business community. In my last message, I mentioned several initiatives expected to have a significant impact on our community, offering amenities and destination points that will attract visitors from all over Houston.

The Levitt Pavilion, destined to bring outdoor concerts to Willow Waterhole, is proceeding toward its fundraising and construction goals and is expected to become a major entertainment venue in the heart of our District.

Houston Community College will be bringing a new campus into our area which will train workers to fill critical jobs in our medical, industrial, and energy sectors. The former Westland YMCA building is on track to be transformed into a new 15-acre athletic complex for Westbury Christian School, and this new facility will bring in young athletes from all over the city to compete in football, soccer, baseball, track, and other sports.

Across the northern border of our District, Houston Baptist University has completed a master plan which will turn this once sleepy campus into a state of the art institution, greatly enhancing the image and perception of Southwest Houston. As a part of the first phase of their plan, a football field that now serves as a practice area has been constructed and will soon have a new stadium rising up around it to enable the university to host home games in the Southland Conference.

All of these wonderful new projects are sure to bring in hundreds of visitors, and that’s why the Brays Oaks directors and staff continue to work diligently on continued improvements in environmental design, wayfinding, landscaping, graffiti abatement, continued public safety initiatives, removal of dangerous buildings, and a strategy for attracting new retail and restaurants.

From working in the real estate field, I know these improvements, large and small, will have a beneficial impact on property values and will create opportunities for more good things to come, like the proposed dual-language charter school and the new neighborhood clinic you’ll read about in this newsletter.

I have served on the Brays Oaks board for the past nine years, and I can honestly say that I have never felt such positive energy from board and staff members, residents, and business owners alike. But, this is no time to rest on our laurels. There is still much work to be done, and we look forward to your continued support in 2014 and beyond!

Sincerely yours,

C. Fred Meyer
Brays Oaks Management District

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Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – September 2013

September 13, 2013 • Continue Reading »

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While it will be impossible to fill the shoes of our previous chairman, Etan Mirwis, it sure will be nice to follow his footsteps as he has blazed a trail that has awakened the Brays Oaks Management District to new possibilities. Indeed, through Etan’s leadership, a solid foundation has been laid in the advancement of our community, and for that, we owe him a huge debt of gratitude. Etan has been a terrific, passionate leader with a keen vision for what we needed to accomplish, and he has set the stage for great acts to follow.

We can see a visible example in the beautification initiative which has included improvements to 90 esplanades in the District and many not so visible improvements such as the lack of trash and graffiti! But there are other important advances that are not as tangible. For instance, BOMD has established a great working relationship with law enforcement officers throughout the community and that has enhanced public safety for everyone in the District. Thanks to Etan, the board and the various committees, we’ve also made tremendous progress reaching out to the owners and managers of multi-family housing complexes and have established a productive communication system.

Now that we’ve forged those relationships, the next important step is to develop a better understanding of our retail businesses. This is an area I’m particularly excited about, being in the retail property management business myself. Currently, we are gathering information about the existing retail businesses in Brays Oaks– an inventory that will tell us more about the types of businesses that proliferate and the types we need to cultivate. Once we have that collected and analyzed, we can begin a dialogue with the property owners, managers and real estate brokers to assist them in tailoring their retail properties to better meet the needs of the community.

We are also excited about three other major developments on the horizon that are destined to shape the educational and cultural aspects of Brays Oaks–the Levitt Pavilion for outdoor music concerts at Willow Waterhole, the new HCC Campus and the transformation of the old YMCA building into a new Westbury Christian Athletic Complex.

The Levitt Pavilion is in the early planning stages as to its leadership, fundraising, and design and more details will come in newsletters to follow. Suffice it to say for now – this project is very exciting for our community! The HCC campus will be a boon to the area and a wonderful addition to our community. With the workforce training it will provide, the campus will become just one more good reason for people to come to Brays Oaks to live, to study and to locate new businesses.

As I also serve as chairman of the fundraising campaign for the Westbury Christian Athletic Complex, I can assure you that is also going to be a huge benefit for the District. We’re raising $12 million for capital improvements that will turn an out-of-date YMCA facility into a state-of-the-art high school athletic complex. Located less than a mile from the Westbury Christian Campus in the center of Brays Oaks, the new complex will soon draw families from all over the city to watch their kids compete in football, track, baseball and girls’ softball.

Once we have more people from across Houston visiting Brays Oaks for concerts, sporting events and college classes, we can show everyone what kind of progress we’ve made. Brays Oaks is a growing, vibrant community with a lot of positive improvements already completed, and it’s time for the rest of the city to realize that.

I look forward to working with the board and staff, and we all appreciate your continued support and suggestions to further improve the Brays Oaks Management District.

Sincerely yours,

C. Fred Meyer
Brays Oaks Management District

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Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – January 2013

January 24, 2013 • Continue Reading »

Hello & Happy New Year!
As we look towards the many opportunities for success that await us in the New Year, let’s not forget how far we’ve come in the last
12 months. 2012 was very productive for the Brays Oaks District in meeting many of the goals on the path to fulfilling our missions of business and economic development, environmental and  urban design, public safety and mobility and transportation.

To demonstrate our dedication to improving the quality of life in Brays Oaks, the District has lent its support to a variety of community initiatives, including scholarship programs, school supply drives, real estate and business forums, and sponsorship of “Music in the Park
and Movie Nights” at the Willow Waterhole Conservancy.

The District’s Business & Economic Development Committee drafted a Long Term Commercial Business Development Plan designed to retain and attract quality retail and office tenants. When fully implemented, the plan is expected to add value to commercial properties in the District. The first step – an inventory of all retail and office tenants – is underway.

We have also tested methodology for attracting quality retail store names by undertaking a comparative analysis of the three-mile trade area  around a potential site in the District and those surrounding two existing branded stores elsewhere in Southwest Houston. We have also performed a complete population, demographics and public transit analysis to support a Houston Community College Workforce Development Center in the District. The proposed new campus was one of three HCC Southwest College facilities included in the $425.0 million HCC bond referendum approved by voters  on November 6. When constructed, it is expected to have a major impact on economic development by making training in a variety of vocational fields available to high school graduates throughout the District. The District’s Environmental and Urban Design Committee made substantial improvements to the overall appearance and image of the community with beautiful new landscaping projects along major thoroughfares. This year, we also amended our Master Parks Plan to include those areas newly annexed into the District and successfully procured grant funding from the Fondren Foundation to develop trails along the Fondren Diversion Channel. In 2012 we began an evaluation process to explore possible ways to increase connectivity related to the city’s plan for development of green spaces and hike-and-bike trails along the city bayous. We also started planning to more fully develop recreational uses in our local parks. This plan will work in partnership with the City Park’s Department. Our partnership with the Harris County Attorney’s office made significant strides in  2012 to take action against businesses and apartment complexes that have allowed criminal activities on their premises to threaten the safety and well-being of the surrounding community. Our mobile surveillance cameras have also significantly reduced crime in hotspot areas. We are also proud of the fact that The Reserve at Creekbend  became the first multi-family housing complex in Brays Oaks to be awarded “Blue Star” status by the Houston Police Department.

In short, we’ve had a very good year in 2012 with much to celebrate and I’d like to invite you to join us as we build on the strengths of this wonderful community in 2013 and beyond.

Sincerely yours,

Etan Mirwis
Brays Oaks Management District Board of Directors
Hello & Happy New Year!

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Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – August 2012

August 16, 2012 • Continue Reading »

Great things are happening in the Brays Oaks Management District this summer. The District created a public safety committee headed by our own board member, Starla Turnbo, whose background in real estate management should prove to be an asset as we work with apartment managers throughout the District. Statistics provided by the Houston Police Department show an overall downward trend in crime in our area. Specifically, there has been a dramatic drop in shoplifting incidents–by nearly a third over last year.

That means that our proactive efforts to improve public safety for both the residents and businesses are really paying off, but it doesn’t mean our work is done.

Simple improvements like additional lighting and trimming hedges can make a difference in the opportunity for criminal activity. The Management District is committed to finding creative ways to educate business owners on crime prevention.

In June, the Reserve at Creek Bend became the first Brays Oaks-area apartment complex to receive the Blue Star certification by the Houston Police Department, passing a rigid inspection by its Apartment Enforcement Unit. Attaining this designation is a first step toward a significant reduction in crime in the area, but it also can be a powerful attraction for prospective tenants.

Improving public safety is a key element in the District’s mission to provide a quality environment for both residents and business owners, and in fact, is critical to new business development.

There are also some new developments regarding new businesses opening up in the community.  It would be premature to discuss these before the ink is dry, so let’s keep the details under wraps until a future issue of this newsletter.

In the meantime, if you or your organization has good news to share, ideas worth developing, or if you just want to comment on what’s happening within the District, we’d love to hear from you.

Etan Mirwis
Brays Oaks Management District Board of Directors

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Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – April 2012

April 24, 2012 • Continue Reading »

Now in its seventh year of service to the Brays Oaks community, the District and its board of directors is proud of the many accomplishments it has made that contribute to a robust business environment and the quality of life. I would like point out two very specific ways we have made significant headway in the past seven years.

First, our Business and Economic Development Committee has been actively working to implement programs to stimulate investment and job creation in the district. We know that the growth of both new and existing businesses has the effect of generating positive interest in an area and attracting even more development.

Second, we are committed to promoting quality of life within Brays Oaks through the development of new green space and the preservation and maintenance of what we already have.

Recent studies have shown that the proximity of quality public green space has a positive impact on home values. Preserving the “green” aspect of the District is the focus of the Environmental and Urban Design Committee, composed of board members, business owners and community stakeholders.

Green is the color of both a healthy environment and economic prosperity––two of the many goals the Brays Oaks Management District pursues on behalf of the residents and businesses in the area. As always, your involvement in the process is welcomed and encouraged, and the board of directors is eager to hear your input.

Etan Mirwis
Brays Oaks Management District Board of Directors


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Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – December 2011

November 30, 2011 • Continue Reading »

2011 was another year of significant progress in the District in all of our service areas. Our seven year journey of District revitalization was most evident when we were notified that the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR) had agreed to our request to use our District boundaries as a distinct geographic area. Continue Reading »

Brays Oaks Management District Newsletter – July 2011

July 30, 2011 • Continue Reading »

In the first quarter we reported on a number of exciting on-going projects, one of which I am happy to share, is finally official. The District expansion bill was signed into law by the Governor in June. This expansion brings the remainder of the Braeburn Super Neighborhood and the entirety of the Westbury Subdivision into the District. Through this expansion we can enhance our redevelopment efforts in a much more systematic and comprehensive manner. Continue Reading »

February Newsletter

June 23, 2011 • Continue Reading »

February Newsletter