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Everything posted by CREguy13

  1. I wonder if the demand exceeded Rice's expectations? Are they revising their timeline for the next phase to break ground sooner than anticipated and will the project be larger in scale than originally planned?
  2. This faced a lot of weather delays last week, but overall it has been slower. Now that they're starting on the residential floors, it should be a noticeable change in pace.
  3. I actually like the scaled down version - it kind of looks like the Allen. The fact that it will have a neighboring tower on the same block is great for density and based on Drewery Place, Caydon will use high quality materials. Of course would prefer a higher floor count, but 30+ floors with good design/quality in an area that didn't have a high-rise 12 months ago is a W in my book.
  4. Houston Planning Commission's virtual meeting on this is today at 2:30pm. Fingers crossed there's new information released, ideally updated renderings and revised timeline...
  5. He tagged the concrete on the 3rd floor facing Westheimer. Would love this guy to get caught in the act at some point.
  6. Wasn't able to snap a picture, but Rowdy tagged the project... this guy is so annoying and petty. Tag is faces Westheimer so it's easy to see and reads something like 'ROWDY here's your panel'. What a loser.
  7. Went by here earlier this morning and saw what looked like superintendents and project managers walking the site. Again, nothing matters until dirt turns but hopefully this is more of a positive sign that we should see/hear something soon.
  8. I'm a little confused as to the opportunity cost you're referring to. A Hines-developed large life-science campus, immediately adjacent to one of the largest life science accelerators in the country and less than a mile from the largest medical center in the world. I personally can't think of a better fit or use for this site.
  9. Woodbranch put this block back on the market today. I'm okay with this as I thought I'd heard they were planning to hold this site to keep the unobstructed views from Market Square Tower. Hopefully it gets scooped up quickly by a developer with big ambitions!
  10. Wow, This is incredible news. Hines Press Release from their website: Hines and 2ML Real Estate Interests to Build Levit Green Life Science-based mixed-use development will be adjacent to the Texas Medical Center JUNE 15, 2020 (HOUSTON) – Hines, the international real estate firm, has finalized an exclusive agreement with 2ML Real Estate Interests to develop Levit Green, more than 52 acres of prime real estate adjacent to the Texas Medical Center. The thoughtfully designed masterplan will offer a curated mix of uses, including research facilities, office, residential, shopping and dining, outdoor amenities and green space at the epicenter of Houston’s biotech, corporate life sciences and medical research hub. Located inside Houston’s I-610 Loop, steps from one of the city’s largest parks, myriad arts and cultural institutions and vibrant retail offerings, Levit Green will offer amenities that are increasingly rare today: unparalleled size, versatility and connectivity within the city’s urban core. The unique property is less than three miles from Houston’s Central Business District and its prominent location enjoys immediate access to State Highway 288, METRORail, METRO bus, bike trails and the planned TMC³ medical research campus. A partnership between the Hines and Levit families, two names synonymous with Houston, Levit Green will go beyond a live-work-play paradigm to create an environment that fosters interaction and collaboration in and out of the laboratory. From venture capital to IPOs and M&A, investment in life sciences is reaching all-time highs. We are seeing record-breaking R&D spending creating the need for highly sophisticated lab space and cutting-edge pharmaceutical facilities. “At 15.5%, Houston has one of the highest five-year growth rates in life sciences establishments in the United States. Impressive advancements in therapeutics, science and innovation are driving demand for real estate,” stated John Mooz, senior managing director at Hines. “With multimodal connectivity and proximity to TMC, we believe Levit Green will create a new and needed destination for Houston’s rapidly growing life sciences cluster.” An initial piece of the property was acquired by Joe Levit, founder of The Grocers Supply Co, which grew to be the largest independently owned wholesaler of grocery products in the southeast U.S. and the largest supplier of Hispanic grocery products in the country. Through the dedication of four generations of the Levit Family, Grocers Supply has enjoyed 97 years of success in serving and partnering with independent grocers to provide quality products for communities in Texas and surrounding states. “We are excited to bring the shared vision of Hines and the Levit family to the community. Our family has deep roots in the neighborhood, and we believe this development will add tremendous value to the area and the Texas Medical Center,” said Max Levit, President of 2ML Real Estate.
  11. More detail on Gabriella Rowe's departure on Innovation Map: Houston innovation hub leader shares details on recent resignation Natalie Harms May 27, 2020, 5:36 pm Gabriella Rowe has stepped down from her role as executive director of The Ion. Courtesy of Station Houston A Houston tech ecosystem leader has announced her resignation from her position in order to seek out a new role. Gabriella Rowe, who served The Ion as executive director until earlier this week, has confirmed she has resigned from her position. The Ion is Rice Management Company's innovation center rising in Midtown, and Rowe was named executive director in October of last year. She was previously the CEO of Station Houston since August 2018, which was later merged with Austin-based Capital Factory. Rowe, who was selected for Mayor Sylvester Turner's new Health Equity Response task force that was established to help the city respond to COVID-19, says she hasn't yet announced what her next move is, but she tells InnovationMap will continue focusing on technology and equity. "I am stepping back from the Ion role in order to focus my time exclusively with the issues of equity and access in growing our tech ecosystem and economy," Rowe says, "because I think that is going to be an instrumental part of the recovery of Houston moving forward." While Rowe will have no official role at The Ion moving forward, she imagines her to-be-announced opportunity will work hand-in-hand with the mission of The Ion, which is expected to deliver next year. "The Ion is going to be an incredibly successful project that is going to have all the positive effect on the long term future of Houston that it is designed to do. I feel confident that it's set up to do that and has the people in place to carry it forward," she says. Rowe says her foray into Houston's tech ecosystem began when she was head of school of The Village School in West Houston. Now, her driving factor is creating a city where those students could grow their tech education and skills and have plenty of care opportunities in Houston. "From the very start, this has been for me about building a tech ecosystem in Houston that can support the development of the tech economy that would give our Houston talent an opportunity to stay here in this city and partake in this global opportunity," she says
  12. It says she is staying in Houston and pursuing other opportunities. Hopefully she found another great gig.
  13. Thanks for sharing. Under Segment 3, Fourth Ward Gateway: "Reconciling METRO Bus Staging, detention, and Pierce Skypark entry, all proposed in the same location at the south end Downtown Connector ramps." I didn't realize the skypark was still on the table. BIG fan of having a Highline or 606-type park in our urban core.
  14. I couldn't find any info. on Kimpton's website re Houston, so hopefully they haven't pulled out... If they are still committed, I actually believe this will break ground in Q1 2021 since the hotel now is a larger part of the equation with the reduced project scope. What is becoming more clear is that Houston just isn't quite there yet in terms of high-rise for-sale units. We're seeing developers propose larger scale projects with condos a part of the mix, and after their sales office tests the market over a period of time, they reduce the number of units accordingly as we've seen with the Allen and now Laneways. While much smaller in scale, Moderne at Rice Village is a great example of the current market. Of course, this will change over time, but for now it seems buyers are still more interested in actual homes or town homes then vertical living when it comes to for-sale units.
  15. Not sure I understand their logic. this is the worst stretch of Washington for senior residences. Really scratching my head on this one.
  16. Very fair criticism! I walked back, but unfortunately all the workers were gone. However, this was left behind.
  17. Walked by over lunch and there were 10 - 15 workers on-site working on something... While I didn't have time to ask any of them what was happening there was new heavy equipment present that appeared to be for tearing up concrete. Will report back in a few days, but for now... [insert dancing emoji]
  18. During COVID, I've been walking around Market Square frequently. Despite the craziness in the world, its been pleasant watching both Texas Tower and the Preston continue to rise - TT doing so at record pace. It's made me wonder what is the next MF/Condor or Hotel project we will see and where will it be? It's unclear now when 800 Preston will breack ground, but this area will have continued demand for luxury living that I really don't see slowing compared to other parts of Houston. I've heard from a few executives in downtown that are planning to sell their house and move to the 'North District.' They want to keep their second homes but their primary residence in Houston will be downtown which is a very exciting trend.
  19. Have there been any announcements on retailers opening here? Hoping this building grows on me over time, and solid retailers that serve the neighborhood will certainly help.
  20. They haven't released the plans yet, but I imagine they are coming soon since construction has been underway for about a month now. Judging by the scaffolding around the entire building, they're likely removing the paneling on the first floor. I don't think it makes sense for restaurant/retail on the Travis street side as that's where the tunnel connection and escalator are. I'm wondering if they get creative and take the successes from Capitol Tower to open up Travis, so you have much more natural light/direct access to the tunnel from the street level. I do think that you have restaurant/retail space on both Texas and Milam street. Texas side engages Texas Tower's active ground-level and Milam engages Jones Hall which Chase Tower was originally designed to complement. My hope is the Plaza area will be re-imagined to support/serve as gateway to Theater District and be activated for building tenants/Jones Hall private events similar to what the new Lynn Wyatt Square aims to do for Alley Theater. I've heard rumors the price tag is between $20-30m so I'm optimistic this will exceed expectations with Hines involved. They are working to rebrand this area of downtown as the 'North District' so this renovation must fit the legacy they are building.
  21. Very fair and good clarification on 'How the world sees Houston' as obviously that's a real thing and has hurt this city dearly in losing corporate relocations to other comparable markets. I'm of course biased, but I believe Houston is a perfect fit for Tesla, SpaceX, and Solarcity. To me, a lot of this depends on how seriously the city, GHP and major business leaders are pushing the 'Leading the Energy transition' initiative and how aggressive they are getting to lure these clean energy and energy tech companies to Houston. Does Elon want his EV/Battery Storage, Solar, and Space company to be in the Energy Capital of the world? Does he want an abundance of highly-skilled technical and manufacturing workers, knowledge experts, corporate-level talent, available labor pool, experienced local government and public/private partnerships that promote energy companies all day every day? Houston's pitch should be less geared towards low-cost of doing business, but more that we are better suited than other markets to propel his companies forward with the critical pieces we have in place, our ongoing investments in these areas, and that his businesses fit the long-term vision of Houston. To me it's a winning formula, but as you said a lot of it is optics. If city leaders are in a position to pitch Houston as the best place to champion his companies, then we realistically could have a shot. But if this comes down to optics, I agree we may fall to 3rd place in the state. Again, this is likely just a threat to the county to re-open his factory, but will be interesting to follow his comments on doing business in CA in the coming months.
  22. Certainly a bummer, but I'm not that concerned on this one. They've had these plans for some time and sounded like they had the project pretty much capitalized and ready to break ground right before the lockdown. I guess we'll see, but I believe they'll start construction this year like they hope to. Crazy how many mid-rise and high-rises will be U/C in Museum District/Hermann Park. Especially if X Houston gets going. Costar Article: Pandemic Postpones 32-Story Apartment Tower in Houston's Museum District Luxury Skyscraper Was Supposed to Break Ground in the First Quarter Two Hermann Place could be delayed by at least six to nine months because of the coronavirus pandemic, but developers are still hopeful the project will start this year. (Tema Development, Nitya Capital) By Marissa Luck CoStar News April 30, 2020 | 03:19 P.M. The pandemic has delayed construction on a 32-story apartment tower that could change the skyline in a prominent part of Houston, but developers are still eyeing 2020 for a potential start date. Nitya Capital, a value-add investor with $2 billion in assets under management, and Tema Development originally had planned to break ground in the first quarter on a residential tower overlooking Hermann Park in Houston's Museum District. The pandemic caused them to hit the pause button on starting the multimillion-dollar project, Swapnil Agarwal, CEO of Nitya Capital, said in an interview. "We were two weeks away from starting but we put it on hold for obvious reasons," Agarwal said. "We would like to start the project in 2020, we’ll revisit that once we have more clarity on normal lifestyle." Agarwal said the group is hopeful they can start construction in the fall. The groups are down to two finalists for the bidding process for the general contractor and the construction lender. They have already received building permits, Agarwal said. "Construction costs might go down so we’re going to revisit that .. I’m hoping everything is business as usual in the next two or three months," he said. Initial architectural estimates for Two Hermann Place peg the project to cost $78.4 million to build, according to a 2018 filing with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. Two Hermann Place is planned near Jackson Street, behind One Hermann Place, a mid-rise apartment project Tema Development completed in 2016 at 1699 Hermann Drive. The project would be Nitya Capital's first apartment development project from the ground up. However, the company had been exploring options for future multifamily developments through partnerships with Tema Development. Nitya Capital also formed a partnership with the real estate investment firm ZT Corporate to explore new multifamily opportunities. ZT Corporate and Nitya Capital signed a memorandum of understanding for a partnership in early March, but no deals have been done yet since it launched right before the pandemic, said Taseer Badar, CEO of ZT Corporate, who himself has been busy launching free coronavirus testing to help get his employees back to work safely. Renter Relief Although its latest apartment project has been delayed, Nitya Capital used the lockdown to launch a $4 million apartment relief program for its renters through its nonprofit foundation, Karya Kares. The renter relief fund provides up to $1,000 for renters who lost their jobs or have been financially hit by the pandemic, similar to funds launched by Houston-based Camden Property Trust. Nitya Capital's program received 200 applications within the first two weeks, Agarwal said. The company also donated about $100,000 to the Houston Fire Department and the Harris County Sheriff’s Department to purchase personal protective equipment. “As a business owner and entrepreneur whose main business is to provide housing to low class and lower middle class Americans, those are the people who have been impacted the most,” Agarwal said. “A lot of my tenant base [comprises] nurses, teachers, people who work in restaurants whose lives have been impacted a lot.” Nitya Capital owns about 20,000 apartment units, mostly in the Houston area, with rents at about $850 to $900 per month. By mid-April, about 90% of tenants had paid rent, but that number jumped to 99% once stimulus checks starting hitting tenants' bank account. "I think somehow people managed to get the funds to pay us. Most people who can’t pay we’re setting payment plans," Agarwal said. "People are doing whatever they can because it’s an essential need. It’s a difficult situation." Agarwal said he was not worried about a significant dip in May rental collection rates as Texas' economy begins to reopen. Renters across the country got creative in making April rent payments, dipping into savings and stimulus checks or turning to landlords for assistance to boost rent collection to 89% through April 19, according to the National Multifamily Housing Council. Experts expect May to be a bigger test for multifamily renters as unemployment claims climbed to more than 30 million. Since March 14, about 1.9 million people have filed for initial unemployment claims in Texas, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. Nearly 214,000 people in the greater Houston area had filed for jobless claims through April 18, according to the TWC.
  23. This is really a great shot. Montrose blvd. needs to be turned into a beautiful promenade from Allen Parkway to the roundabout in Museum District ie from Aga Khan to MFAH. It will be awesome watching this stretch continue to be lined with mid-rise and high-rise multifamily with hotels certainly not far behind.
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