A Dallas developer who has spearheaded projects in downtown Waco is turning his attention to Woodway, where he proposes The Outlook at Bosque Ridge to bring retail, restaurants, an amphitheater and office space to acreage at U.S. Highway 84 and Ritchie Road.

Marshall Stewman has acquired about 11 acres next to the Midway Independent School District Administration Building from Gary Heavin, founder of the Curves International fitness chain, and has had preliminary talks with Woodway officials ahead of a presentation to the city council.

“This is still very much in the initial stages, but we’re eager to get the word out,” Stewman said.

He envisions an 80,000-square-foot planned development spread over five or six buildings and dotted with fountains, holding ponds, patios, a playground and an entertainment venue.

“The total project, not including tenant build-out, will carry a price of about $15 million,” Stewman said. “We’re playing off the family friendly environment and the residential growth moving in that direction. We think this could be something comparable to the Shops at Legacy in Plano, and a smaller version of The Domain in Austin, where you can enjoy a glass of wine and a hamburger with your wife while your kids are playing in front of you.”

Stewman said he hopes to complete site work and have building shells in place by late spring next year. He said he views The Outlook as a neighborhood center, and he will pursue feedback on what it should include.

“Nobody can guarantee this or that particular tenant, but we want to get community support of what we do go after,” Stewman said. “Will we go after national chains? That remains to be seen. We may choose regional concepts, and we have spoken to a couple of local restaurants about opening a second location, believing they could do well out there.”

Local real estate agent Gregg Glime, who is marketing The Outlook, said it would feature three free-standing dining establishments. A 30,000-square-foot building would provide space for office spaces ranging from 1,000 to 14,400 square feet. It would have a lease rate of $15 per square foot, and the spaces could be bought at prices starting at $150,000, Glime said.

“I have received serious inquiries on 20,000 square feet,” Glime said, adding prospects include a medical group and a financial services company.

Another 30,000-square-foot structure would accommodate retail and office space, with the second floor “overlooking the entire project,” Glime said.

Glime said the amphitheater could become a community asset, attracting live bands, artists and holiday-related festivities.

A drive-thru lane is proposed to serve at least one building, “and we expect interest from coffee concepts, either locally or nationally,” he said.

“Everything he is proposing easily fits within our master plan and our zoning, and the concept looks fine, though we have not seen any formal development plans,” Woodway City Engineer Mitch Davison said. “We think that’s a good place for what he’s proposing, wedged between the Midway ISD administration building and a law office, because, as they said, there is not much commercial development out there along Highway 84.”

He said the Badger Ranch subdivision in that area continues to grow, creating home sites for families who would visit The Overlook.

Stewman said he and his business partners, whom he declined to name, are responding to the home construction boom in the Hewitt, Woodway and far West Waco corridor.

Updating his downtown projects, Stewman said Mary Avenue Market is full, and that an upscale Tex-Mex restaurant there called Hecho en Waco has become a popular draw.

“I eat there quite a bit myself,” he said.

At Sixth Street and Columbus Avenue, Stewman is renovating about 20,000 square feet for use by Nexus, a popular gaming chain, as well as community co-working space. He said he also is negotiating with prospects wanting to place restaurant and office space there.

“I should be handing the keys to Nexus on March 1, and the work space should be right behind them a couple of weeks,” Stewman said.

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