Dakota Lofts in Houston

Photo of Dakota Lofts in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz
Photo of Dakota Lofts in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz

Dakota Lofts
Formerly:Bute Paint Company Warehouse

711 William Street, Houston, Texas, Downtown 77002
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Another of Houston’s buildings that are more notable for their recent history than their past. The Dakota Lofts were the first sign of urban renewal in Houston. In 1993 developers Randall Davis and Richard Weekley converted the abandoned Bute Paint warehouse into lofts. Even though the Dakota Lofts are located in one of Houston’s scariest most run-down neighborhoods, the flats were immediately snatched up by artists, photographers, and musicians as studios. Businessmen tired of long commutes from the suburbs to downtown followed. Today the spaces are a mixture of residential lofts, and businesses like photography and recording studios, magazines, and web sites. Dozens of other loft conversions followed, a trend that came to Houston nearly 40 years after the same phenomenon began sweeping through New York, which learned the trick from post-War Europe.

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