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  1. For years I have been wondering if Sears will ever do something with this eyesore located in midtown. It has so much potential, I guess at one point it was actually considered a beautiful building. Sears really needs to think about bringing it back to its original form. Something needs to be done. I would prefer to preserve the building, instead of razing it . What do you all think? Article found in the Chronicle today. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/life/main/5924010.html ''It's hideous!" fumes my friend V., warming up to one of his favorite rants: the unbearable ugliness of the Sears on Main Street. "It's right there on the light-rail line! At the entrance to the Museum District! At one of the few places where Houston can look good to visitors!" V., I have to admit, has a point. Sears' tan metal siding, blotched with graffiti cover-up, gives the building's upper floors the beaten-down air of an aging ministorage unit. But even that beats the urban battle fortifications at ground level. Someone, it appears, worked hard to make the department store defensible, able to repel invading hordes of shoppers intoxicated by Vanessa Hudgens' back-to-school ads. At the Wheeler side of the building, two sets of glass double doors, blacked out and locked during business hours, present an ominous face to the street. Opaque gray film makes the official entrance's glass doors, facing Main, only a little less scary. Bricks fill almost all the former display windows; burglar bars and more of that gray film cover the plate glass that survived. Only the most intrepid seekers of Kenmore appliances would dare breach such a bulwark. What's the deal, V. wonders. Does Sears think that the urban shoppers that store serves deserve less than, say, the suburbanites at the Memorial City Mall? And for that matter, hasn't someone at Sears noticed that Midtown has gentrified around the store? Isn't there a retail audience yearning to be better served? "Don't just return," exhorts the Hudgens back-to-school ad for Sears. "Arrive." V. would like that Sears to do just that. ...
  2. 6-Story expansion planned at Jackson & W. Gray St. Currently on the planning commission agenda.
  3. I can't find the thread that had renderings and site plan, but the developers are seeking setback and visibility triangle variances. It will go before the Planning Commission on Thursday, 5/28. The location is the Southwest corner of Austin/Webster intersection where Midtown Bail Bonds used to operate.
  4. This thread was originally created April 2016. I'm reposting this because this post and other content from me are no longer available on the forum. The original thread is archived here: page 1, page 2. 2403 Caroline Street in Midtown, Houston.
  5. signs up around the Triumph Hospital along Albany, Drew, Helena, and Dennis
  6. https://app.crowdstreet.com/properties/haven-elgin/?preview=true Likely somewhere in Midtown along Elgin St.
  7. The lot at 2800 San Jacinto has recently been listed for sale. Strangely, the listing makes no mention of Caydon's tower that's gone up across the street--one would think that would be a big draw for this property: https://www.loopnet.com/Listing/2800-San-Jacinto-Houston-TX/6537096/
  8. Drewery Place, Phase I: Phase II (now known as Laneways Midtown) : https://skyrisecities.com/database/projects/district
  9. Is the new midtown park fully open? The chain link fence is gone, people are using it, but one of the gates to the dog run is padlocked. (There's two gates but only one is padlocked)
  10. The NHP Foundation received a $1.5M annual allocation of 9% credits from the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs to construct 149 units of permanent affordable housing in Houston’s Midtown neighborhood. Additionally, the city of Houston Department of Housing and Community Development has allocated $15M through its Harvey Multifamily Program. The project is also being considered for funding by the Harris County Community Services Department. Magnificat Houses Inc. is providing the land and is NHPF's partner in the development. The property, located at 3300 Caroline St., will contain 149 rental units, recreational amenities and space for the supportive services. In addition, 20% of 3300 Caroline's units will be set aside for formerly homeless people who have gone through transitional housing programs such as Magnificat's and are willing to become the equivalent of college resident advisers.
  11. There was an article in the Chronicle today outlining some new developments in the Midtown area that sound incredible... Houston Chronicle In short: 1. Big white mansion at Elgin @ Austin will be renovated ($3 million cost) into a new upscale restaurant, lounge, and event center 2. Old Boy Scouts of America building at Bagby and Victor: Work on the Boy Scouts building will begin in February. The $20 million project will include Moor's Restaurant and Tapas Lounge, serving mainly Moroccan and Spanish cuisine and be leased and operated by Hicham Naffaa and Ali Bendella, owners of Coco's Crepes, Cava American Bistro and Cielo Mexican Bistro. The building, scheduled to open in October, will also have banquet space and Chopra's offices. 3. Parking garage w/ retail: Across the street, Chopra owns land on which he plans to build a seven-story public garage with street-level retail. (NOTE: I believe this is the lot at Bagby and Victor across the street from Christian's Tailgate) Here's a Google view of the areas being talked about: Old Mansion Boy Scout building and new garage w/ retail across street
  12. (Posts moved from Louisiana and Elgin thread) dbigtex56 Well, I don't see anything at all....but here are a couple of pics of the site, I think. Here is a small project we've talked about across the street, but I couldn't find the thread.
  13. On a Sunday stroll, I noticed a drilling rig doing what looked to me like soil samples in the Central Bank parking lot between Milam and Travis (2217 Milam but the drilling was closer to Travis) in Midtown. The bank occupies the entire block. Pix attached. This is across the street from the new bar, Pour Behavior, that is supposed to open this winter at 2211 Travis St. I’m not sure what is going on there. Does anyone have any insights/baseless rumors?
  14. Today, on my quick drive home from downtown, I noticed that Baldwin Park has bright orange temporary fencing all over it - specifically around the outline of the trail and around each of the trees...likely a protective measure. Looks like they're finally gonna start on this thing...
  15. https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/LULAC-kicks-off-fundraising-to-restore-16056142.php#photo-20792148 While the Astrodome sits empty, help is coming to Houston's other 'National Treasure' Olivia P. Tallet, Staff writer March 26, 2021Updated: March 26, 2021 1:47 p.m. There are only two places in Houston declared “National Treasures” by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. One is the Astrodome, regarded as “The Eighth Wonder of the World” when it opened in 1965. The other is a small, unpretentious stucco house near downtown that passersby hardly notice. The curious, however, would spot a plaque in front of the white, two-story building where the Texas Historical Commission marked its prominence. It is the home of the historic League of United Latin American Citizens’ Council 60 Clubhouse, the epicenter of many significant achievements of the Latino civil rights movement of the last century. Some historians have noted the clubhouse was where the actual Latino political power began to show. Unlike any other Hispanic organizations in contemporary history, the LULAC clubhouse attracted national leaders, including President John F. Kennedy and Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson. Almost a decade since Council 60 stopped using the clubhouse due to unsafe conditions of the building structure, a renewed LULAC leadership is kicking off a $500,000 fundraising campaign to renovate the historic site and reactivate the clubhouse with a wider community and exhibition value. “We want people to know this LULAC Clubhouse that serves as an icon of the Mexican American civil rights movement,” said Ray Valdez, chair of C 60 Inc., a nonprofit established to restore the building. “We want to preserve it and renew its use so that people can come by and be proud of all that Latinos have accomplished.” The fundraising campaign includes the creation of a GoFundMe.com account called “LULAC Clubhouse.” But they plan to escalate it after finishing a significant phase of the construction project at the end of this month. Construction work — part of an emergency stabilization plan needed after the house was severely damaged during Hurricane Harvey — is being finished, Valdez said. This phase included structural, foundational and roof repairs, as well as the restoration of exterior walls. Some areas required special treatment to meet Department of the Interior guidelines for historic rehabilitation. One of them was the chimney, which was taken down brick by brick, cataloged and reassembled to the original specifications of the house as it was built in 1942. Now, the goal is to raise $500,000 for the next construction phase to finish the project. The campaign is a “tiered crowdfunding initiative to thoughtfully engage individuals across the city, state and country to contribute to the restoration of the historic” place, said Jesús Dávila, project director for the online capital campaign and member of the organization. The fundraising campaign will include online engagement initiatives and opportunities for people to donate by shopping through corporate charity programs such as Amazon Smile. Organizers said they hope to attract some large financial contributions. But the goal is to also gather thousands of smaller donations to reflect the spirit of community and advocacy that has marked the clubhouse since its inception, said Dávila, who is the founder of Landing Advisors, a management consulting firm. The building’s importance is associated with the relevance of Council 60 as one of the most consequential chapters of LULAC in Texas during the civil rights movement. But it also has its own merits from an historic point of view, said Gene Preuss, an associate professor of history at the University of Houston-Downtown and member of the C 60 Inc Board. LULAC is the oldest and, for periods, the largest active national Hispanic organization. It was founded on Feb. 17, 1929, in Corpus Christi, largely by World War I veterans disenfranchised by segregation and racial discrimination against Mexican Americans, said Cynthia Orozco, a historian at Eastern New Mexico University and author of several books on Mexican American history. The organization solidified by creating councils in neighborhoods across Texas and other states. Council 60, active since the mid-1930s, initiated numerous court cases against discrimination, said Preuss. One of the most notorious was Delgado v. Bastrop in 1948, “the first Texas case since the 1930s to rule against public school segregation of Mexican American students,” Preuss said. Other landmark litigation was Hernandez v. the State of Texas in 1954, the first case won by a Mexican American legal team in the U.S. Supreme Court. The ruling said people of Mexican descent couldn’t be discriminated against in jury selections and created a precedent in striking down overall discrimination based on ethnicity and class. A year later, Council 60 board members bought the stucco house on Bagby Street, becoming the first time a LULAC council in the United States was able to own a building for its operations, Preuss said. It continues to be the only clubhouse owned by a chapter of the organization in the country, said Valdez. Besides working on the LULAC national platform on voters’ participation, justice equality, education and healthcare access for veterans, the clubhouse was the hub for the creation of significant programs. It was there where members organized the Little Schools of the 400, the first bilingual education program adopted by the state of Texas to prepare Spanish-speaking kids with language abilities before entering the school, Preuss said. It later became the basis for a larger state-sponsored program in Texas and for President Johnson’s Head Start project for disadvantaged children, according to Oxford Academic’s Journal of American History. The council also created the SER Jobs program, still active with a large platform in the Gulf Coast that trains and places around 4,000 job seekers per year from low-income backgrounds, according to its website. LULAC members said restoring the clubhouse is part of a wider effort to promote the barely known history of the Latino civil rights movement arising from Texas. Most of what is known or taught in schools nationwide is related to farm workers’ struggles in California. During the last decade, people like David Contreras, the LULAC Texas State Historian, have researched and found numerous valuable documents about the organization scattered in several archives. He put together a website with many previously unpublished documents and videos related to the JFK visit to the annual LULAC gala hosted by Council 60 at the Rice Hotel in Houston the night before he was assassinated in Dallas. He visited with his wife, Jackie Kennedy, who spoke to the party in fluent Spanish, as well as then Vice President Johnson and his wife, Lady Bird Johnson. The first floor of the clubhouse will have the renovated bar where LULAC members used to strategize political moves and meet with influential visitors over a drink. “We will not sell alcohol these days, of course,” said Valdez. But they plan to offer beverages and sandwiches to keep the community spirit flowing. Rooms on the second floor will be open for use by other organizations that share similar community interests in the city. Dávila thinks that now with the COVID pandemic beginning to recede, it’s a good time to launch an effort to collect small donations with a common purpose. “It’s been a full year where we have been separated and broken apart,” said Dávila. “In contrast and maybe in defiance of this reality, it’s a powerful metaphor to rebuild a historic place of community through collective generosity.” olivia.tallet@chron.com
  16. This mid-rise is listed under "current projects" on Allen Bianchi's website. Anyone know more? http://www.allenbianchi.com/index.php?option=com_currentprojects&layout=detail&id=2&Itemid=3 Current design:
  17. https://www.virtualbx.com/construction-preview/houston-housing-authority-partners-with-california-developer-on-two-multifamily-projects/
  18. Project Midtown Building Address 3310 Travis Street Houston, TX 77006 Architect HALFF Owner Travis Partners Capital, LLC. Information This project is a new 6-story midrise building (approx. 23,200 sf) that will be connected to an existing 2 story building on the NW corner of Travis and Francis streets in Midtown. Levels 1-5 consists of office space while level 6 has Kitchen/Bar/Lounge (enclosed) with an outdoor terrace.
  19. This is at the corner of Alabama and Fannin. After looking into the variance request, I found that it is planned to be 6 stories with a 2 story parking garage. The approval of the variance request was postponed from June 9th to June 23, 2011... I haven't seen any renderings, only a floor plan. "The Men's Center is a very vital facility that provides a recovery program to alcoholics to regain their lives and dignity. The proposed plan is to redevelop the site by demolishing the existing development and erecting a new six story building with an exterior facade similar to that of a modern hotel and a two story parking structure for ample off-street parking. The proposed development can be accomplished only if the Houston Planning Commission grants a ten foot building line variance for this site along Fannin Street . The main factors attributing to this condition are the size of the land area of the existing site (less than one acre); the dilemma being that the site is not expandable because it is bound by three major streets of the Midtown area; and that there is no available land for expansion in this block of Midtown. The approval of a ten foot building line variance would allow “The Men's Center” to continue it’s longevity of enriching the community as it has done for almost 50 years now. The new and modern high density housing facility would be able to serve the greatest number of citizens possible from this existing site which is centrally located within the City of Houston."
  20. From what I have been hearing, the old "Late Nite Pie" (502 Elgin) location was purchased by the same people that own "Chrome" nightclub over at Shepherd @ Kipling and it's going to be 2 or 3 floors in height! While nothing has been set in stone, the only thing I can think of is what a horrible location that would be. The Lot is small, NO parking (Valet options would probably be 24hr garage and the Restaurant in the back), plus the high speed exits from 59 on Brazos. You'd have to have wreckers posted there on weekends.
  21. Pearl is really banking on Midtown. I think this brings the total count to 4 possible Pearl complexes in the area.
  22. Figured I'd go ahead and start a new official thread on this. Coming Spring 2014 Midtown Superblock Park http://innerlooped.com/1653/midtown-superblock-first-look/ It's going to have underground parking too! There is a link to the full document on InnerLooped. • Includes a balance of program items that support the overall goals of the Midtown District • Includes over 140 underground parking spaces that support park activities, nearby retail destination and the Main Street rail line • Includes over 7,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space Renderings and info as of 5/2015:
  23. I wanted to touch on a topic that has been weighing heavy on my mind recently, and I'd like to hear peoples thoughts. It's ironic that I discovered both these posts today. First, I read a somewhat encouraging article from Houston Public Media about a 5% decline in the homeless population from 2018 to 2019. You can read more in the article here: https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/city-of-houston/2019/05/15/333384/homelessness-down-5-in-houston/ . Obviously the stat on mental health spending was a little depressing, but to hear that Harris, Fort Bend, and Montgomery counties experienced a 54% decline in homelessness since 2011 was surprisingly positive news. But shortly after that I ventured over to the Houston Reddit to find a post entitled "Walked down Main St. from McGowen to Congress yesterday afternoon", which can be read here: Simply put, the post did not give me the warm fuzzies, especially since the area in question stretches all the way down Main Street. Sadly, I have seen the sights described in this thread, maybe not so much the smells, but definitely the sights. I've experienced the yelling, the drunkenness, and the tents/garbage lined up under the freeways. Downtown and Midtown are experiencing decent growth and development right now, yet the presence of the homeless continues to linger and in some cases grow. Certainly new development is helping clean some of these areas, but it seems as though these people simply relocate to other areas close by. For example, when I first moved to Houston in 2017, the entrance to 59 South from Richmond looked like any normal feeder. But for the past 6 months it has become overrun with garbage and filth, and this is right across from the Post 510 apartment complex. You can check the Yelp reviews for the place and see the problem is creating negative reviews from the tenants. This isn't the only complex experiencing the issue in the area, and I feel as though it will continue to keep people away from potentially relocating to Midtown and Downtown. But again, I want you guys to tell me your thoughts on the matter. What is the best course of action the city can take to curve this issue? Does anyone living in Midtown/Downtown echo these sentiments and have their own experiences to share? How will this impact the growth of Houston going forward?
  24. Just wanted to give a heads-up to anyone interested in attending. The Planning Dept. website doesn't show the next meeting date. WHAT: Public hearing to consider the proposed Midtown Walkable Place Pilot Area Plan WHEN: Thursday, March 5, 2:30PM WHERE: City Hall Annex Chambers, Public Level (900 Bagby St.) MORE INFO: The plan addresses things like setbacks, sidewalk widths, and the location of parking spaces. http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/Commissions/walkable-places-midtown.html http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/wp-committee.html
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