Press Releases & Blogs

Recovery underway in Theater District facilities damaged by Hurricane Harvey

Houston • Sept. 7, 2017

Houston, TX (September 7, 2017) – Assessments, clean up and repairs are underway at Jones Hall, Wortham Center, and Theater District underground parking, which all sustained water damage from Hurricane Harvey. During this recovery process, the facilities remain closed to staff and the public. Houston First Corporation, which operates the venues and garages, continues to assess damages and work with contractors to get the facilities up and running as soon as possible.

"This was an unprecedented storm that caused serious damage to one of our city’s treasures- -the Theater District. I want to assure everyone, the Houston First team is working around the clock to make sure this treasure is properly restored and back open for business very soon," said Dawn Ullrich, president and CEO, Houston First Corporation.

"Recovering from flood water damage is complex, so we appreciate the patience, support and understanding of our partners in the performing arts community and their patrons, as well as our more than three thousand monthly parking customers," said Ullrich. "We are encouraged and inspired by the heart of Houstonians who during a disaster, stand together and rise up to become stronger and better, and that is what we intend to do in the Theater District."

Jones Hall - The building suffered minimal damages. Water entered the lower level and the rehearsal room, covering the wood floor. The floor and wet drywall have been removed and will be replaced. Assuming Jones receives good air quality and structural reports, the building should re-open to staff and performances by the end of the week.

Wortham Theater Center - Contractors continue pumping out water and removing soggy carpet and drywall. The basement was completely submerged in water. Flood water also reached the stage floor of the Brown Theater, so the stage floor is being removed and replaced. The building still has no power. One of the biggest concerns is air quality, so tests will be conducted as soon as the building is dry. No reopening date has been determined for the Wortham, but events and performances have been cancelled through October 15.

Theater District Underground Parking Garages - More than 270 million gallons of water filled the Theater District parking garages. As of Wednesday, about 85% of the water had been pumped out. Getting the underground garages fully operational is expected to take several weeks, and they have been closed until further notice. In the meantime, our monthly parking customers, including City employees, have been assigned alternative parking at other Houston First parking facilities. Houston First is also working with its parking partner, Republic Parking System, to secure additional downtown locations. Shuttle services are being provided at some locations to transport customers to and from temporary parking sites to their offices.

Houston First Theater District Staff & Performing Arts Partners - Houston First Theater District employees have been temporarily relocated to Partnership Tower while recovery work is being done at Jones, Wortham and the underground garages.

Houston First is assisting Alley Theater management with moving their employees into temporary offices in HFC’s former offices at 4 Houston Center while the Alley undergoes clean up and repairs.