Fred Welch, executive director with the Pearland EconomicDevelopment Corp., says amenities and infrastructure needed to bein place for office growth to follow. "We have the retail, medical,hotel and conferencing facilities to support office development,"he says.

Additionally, Welch says demographics are impressive, with thecity going from 39,000 people in 2001 to 87,000 in 2007. Much ofthe growing population consists of young professionals who make thenorthward trip to Houston on a daily basis for work. "Hopefully wecan persuade those companies to put their offices in Pearland sothey don't have to drive Downtown," Welch says.

Some developers don't need to be persuaded and have alreadystaked claims in the area. Jumping into the development mix isNational Realty Group Inc., which will break ground in the springon a 41,000-sf spec office project, the Office Grove at PearlandParkway. The $6.6-million building will sit on 3.9 acres at thejunction with FM 518.

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