The Business Journal Interview with Al Brende, founder of Land Tejas Cos.

Al Brende, the man who inked the deal for what will be Houston’s first man-made lagoon, stumbled into the real estate business three decades ago.

The Washington state native was building his own home in California when a buyer came along and bought his house mid-construction. That launched a 35-year career building homes and master-planned communities across the southwestern U.S., but primarily in Houston. Brende, who founded Houston-based Land Tejas Cos. in 1997, has made a name for himself by upping the ante in master- planned communities. The co-owner of the land developer pioneered the concept behind many successful residential projects, including gated communities, smart home technology and amenities like splash pads. Land Tejas Co., which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, has developed more than a dozen Houston communities where more than 20,000 residents call home. Today, Brende has a bold vision for his latest community northeast of Houston.

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