To an outsider, The Woodlands might look like any other Houston suburb. The people of Houston are aware, however, that The Woodlands can hold its own. The Woodlands is a master-planned town, so it is very different in appearance, atmosphere, and operation from the city of Houston or any other suburb.
What one would give up in ultra-urban attractions in Houston proper like the Museum District, Historic Heights, and the Galleria is more than made up for by the Woodlands’ perfectly harmonious blend of natural beauty and urban conveniences.
Hoping to learn more about this city? Let’s talk about ten pros and cons of living in Woodlands, TX!
Pros of Living in The Woodlands
1. A convenient location
The Woodlands is a suburb of Houston that offers more green space and natural scenery than the city itself. As a result, it is a great place to raise active kids or live as a physically active adult. Another perk is its proximity to Houston (just 30 miles away), making the daily commute or evening excursions to the city quite convenient. You get the benefits of both, the cozy suburb and bustling city.
2. Lots of great schools
In your search for a new home, you’ll undoubtedly consider the quality of the local schools. The Woodlands is home to numerous excellent educational institutions.
The schools in the area are known for their low teacher-to-student ratio, inclusiveness, and great rankings among other schools in the state. The most popular schools in the area include McCullough Junior High, Creekside Forest Elementary School, The Woodlands Preparatory School, College Park High School, The Woodlands High School, The Woodlands Christian Academy, and The John Cooper School.
3. Standard healthcare facilities
Although Houston is home to the famous Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world, many prestigious hospitals have established outposts in The Woodlands to be closer to their patients.
There are several renowned hospitals in The Woodlands, including Houston Methodist Woodlands Hospital, Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, CHI St. Luke’s Health – The Woodlands, and Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Medical Center.
Patients from all over the world come to this area, home to some of the world’s finest medical facilities, to receive the care they need at many of these hospitals.
4. You get to be close to nature
It’s probably not rocket science to figure out why the area is called “The Woodlands,” but there is a rationale for the name. All over the landscapes of The Woodlands, you’ll find vast parks and nature reserves. Every person can find their ideal green place among the many parks, gardens, and nature preserves available.
Local favorites include Rob Fleming Park, Spring Creek Nature Trail, Montgomery County Preserve, and George Mitchell Preserve. The Woodlands Reserve is situated adjacent to Burroughs Park.
5. Tons of opportunities for dining, shopping, and entertainment
There’s no denying that Houston is a Mecca for foodies around the world. The suburbs of Houston have just as much cultural depth and diversity in their food, amenities, and entertainment, but they don’t get as much attention. One of the best-kept secrets in the region is The Woodlands, which is a great place to go bar hopping and eating delicious food.
The Woodlands Mall, The Woodlands Waterway, Lake Woodlands and Lake Conroe, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, and Market Street are just a few of the best places to shop, dine, and have a good time.
Cons of Living in The Woodlands
1. The city is being overpopulated
With a population of 120,613 and a population density of 2512 people per square mile, The Woodlands well surpasses both the state and national average population density per square mile. Although the city was once a master-planned neighborhood, today, it has an extremely high population density. The congestion and building going on now prove that the infrastructure was never meant to carry such a heavy load.
Conroe, Texas, is the fastest-growing city in the United States, and it’s located just north of The Woodlands. The Woodlands will continue to become too crowded as a result of its rapid expansion to the west. While this may increase your home’s value in the future, the idyllic “city of The Woodlands” you relocate to will be long gone.
2. A high cost of living
At an index of 111, The Woodlands has a higher cost of living than the rest of Texas and the country as a whole (by 17% and 11%, respectively). Having to pay an extra 10 cents per gallon for gas simply because you are in The Woodlands may seem unappealing to some.
People often relocate to Texas in the hopes of getting more value for their money, but this is not the case in The Woodlands. If we compare the housing market to that of neighboring cities, we might expect an even less favorable result. The median home price is $529,186, which is considerably higher than the national average.
3. Little or no public transportation
The Woodlands does not have a public transportation system. There is the Woodlands Shuttle, but there are no truly reliable bus or train services, even during the day.
You’ll probably need a car down here; while it’s possible to get around on foot, doing so in the summer’s scorching heat of Texas is not particularly pleasant.
4. It gets really hot and humid in this city
The Woodlands has hot and humid weather, so be prepared for that if you’re considering a move here.
Summertime can bring painfully high temperatures, and it is not uncommon for temperatures to go above 100°F. Likewise, the high humidity levels in the air can make it rather uncomfortable to remain outside for extended periods of time.
5. You can’t escape the traffic
The Woodlands is well-known for the notorious traffic on its roads. In fact, more than 27% of the most congested roads in the Greater Houston area are in The Woodlands.
The city’s average commute time is 31 minutes, which is higher than the national average. If you’re thinking of moving here, be prepared to spend a considerable amount of time in traffic.
Before moving to a city, it’s important to consider the pros and cons to make an informed decision. While The Woodlands is a fantastic suburb with lots of benefits, such as the prime location, good schools, natural environment, and excellent healthcare facilities, it also has some major cons, such as the high cost of living, risk of overpopulation, and terrible traffic.