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About astrohip

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  1. It's down now. Went by today, the vault is gone, it's all clear, and they're hauling off all the debris of the last week. The only thing left is the brick building in the SE corner (not the SW, that's Black's Bodegas). Demo guy said that's coming down as soon as they haul everything else off. They had three of those large semi-trailer dump trucks lined up, so it may already be gone.
  2. Brief history: Built by Houston Sash & Door in the 1910s/1920s. Expanded over the years, that's why it looks like so many different styles of construction--brick, metal, more brick, wood floor, concrete slab, etc. They sold it sometime in the early 1970s, when they built a huge new place out near (called at the time) Beltway 8 West (now SH Tollway). They sold it to a company I can't remember the name, who I bought it from in 1976. I can't believe I can't remember their name, but time & old age will do that to you. 🙄They were only there a few years, they had some financial problems and
  3. All coming down. I had a friend that drove by, and took this picture today. They didn't know it was coming down, and of course had to send it to me ASAP, with a text "Did you know your old building is being demolished?". It shows even more of it gone. Most of the front bldg now down. You can also now see the concrete columns of the vault, along with the concrete floor.
  4. That was fast! Those stairs still standing in your last pic, we added those in the late 1970s. Obviously pre-ADA era. You can see it in my pic below, red circle, before they tore it down. We wanted a public entrance, separate from the main entrance on the corner, so we knocked an opening in the brick wall, added a door, and those steps. Also, can't remember if I've mentioned this before. There is a full size vault upstairs, roughly where the yellow circle is. It was there when we moved in, 1977. Think bank vault. Full size bank vault door, vault was about 12' wide, maybe 25-30' deep.
  5. The Bodega building has always been platted and owned separately from the main bldg. I'm not sure who owns it now, but I tried to acquire it in the late 1980s, when it was vacant, and they had no interest in selling. I talked to the demo guys also yesterday, and he said it is all coming down (Bodega excluded). I asked him why they left the brick part standing, and he said they were tearing down the old metal part first (now complete), and then they had to load & haul it off. They would start on the brick part next week. I also asked again about getting in to see the timbers, and
  6. I guess we'll shortly find out if they're really tearing it all down. I'll go by tomorrow.
  7. Agree. That's why I hope to see them myself next week.
  8. I asked him about that (he was on break, and we had a 5-10 minute conversation on all sorts of things--such as I started working there before he was born). He knew exactly what I was talking about. He said those beams were in bad shape, and were not really usable beams any more. Old, dried out, falling apart. I'll probably go back next week and see if I can check them out personally.
  9. I went back and looked at the renderings that were posted in this thread. They clearly show the brick sections being renovated. I know them well enough to recognize them... each window, door, overhead door, etc. Even the funky entrance on the Nance St NW corner is shown in the renderings. While you would think the demo guy would know what he's doing, and he was VERY clear that they were taking down the entire structure, and even gave me a time frame (4-6 weeks start to finish, which is way more time than they need to remove the old metal structures), that doesn't mean he's correct. But I
  10. Quick update: I went by yesterday, and talked to the lead guy handling the demo. He said the entire structure is coming down. Every bit of it, brick, metal, etc. They're even going to be ripping out all the slabs, and scraping down to the ground. The only thing left will be that building in the SW corner, that's not part of the main 813 McKee bldg. I'll try to post some pics later, running short on time this morning.
  11. Ah, so they are keeping the brick part of the building? That makes sense. That metal part was junk when we were there, and that was decades ago. The only good part of it is the huge concrete slab it sits on. I'll try to drive by this week, and see what's going on.
  12. I wasn't saying it's fallen thru, I have no insight into its development. Just that it's dead, no activity at all. 100% agree on the land. It is *prime* inner-city real estate.
  13. Site is dead. I don't see any heavy equipment, no activity, nothing has changed in months. I look down on this, and use my binocs to search for signs of life. There's more activity on Mars than The RO.
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