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I drove down Washington yesterday, that is the art deco fire station, with a chain link fence...what's up with that?

Another question...why were most art deco / moderne bldgs originally white? :huh: Beause of the materials they were made of? That fire station doesn't look right with the color brown.

And there is another interesting bldg. Has the name "E.J.Quade" on it, has urn decorations on the top, it's currently being renovated, Address: 5102 Washington at Roy St. Anyone know it's history? What business was it originally?

Edited by NenaE
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It appears that Lovett Commerical has several projects in the works for the East side of Washington (i.e. by Corkscrew etc...). Here is their info... 1902 Washington Blvd - Mixed Use Development

This was presented on this forum a while ago and I think it's a few years out, however Lovett has been doing a lot of work on a few buildings that front Washington Avenue.

Posted Images

Unfortunately, I think it is true. My wife drove by this past week, and she noticed the inside was largely empty, with no lights on, etc (during normal business hours). I haven't heard any chatter about what it might become....please not another bar.

I have it on good authority that it's going to be a pub. Based on the owner's other establishments, it should be very unpretentious.

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Maybe it's in the other Washington Ave thread, but I think both the fire station and 5102 have been discussed previously. The city has issued permits at both addresses for a bar conversion. Last I heard, the fire station was going to be another Bronx Bar, and 5102 was going to be something called "Ei8ht".

If Daily Grind is going to be a bar in the tradition of the Rhythm Room, I'd be all for it. Lately, though, it seems impossible to open a bar vs. lounge on lower or middle Washington. Maybe Dubliner will be good.

On the history of the E.J. Quade building: The only thing I was able to find quickly was something saying that Charles A. Edworthy sold E.J. Quade "half of lots 9 and 10, block 50, Brunner addition" in April 1929. Lots 9 and 10 don't front Washington - they front Center - but are behind the two lots on the corner of Washington and Roy that do front Washington.

Edited by tmariar
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Last I heard, the fire station was going to be another Bronx Bar

The Bronx Bar is already being built out at the corner of Washington/Fowler. I'm not sure what the old building was though. I think they've been having some permitting/TABC problems because the build-out has slowed to a crawl the last few months.

Here's the building I was referring too.

351vcsg.jpg

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Thanks for the info. That last pic is of the "now brown" Art Deco fire station. That's one eclectically busy avenue. The 'hoods behind it made me sad, though. Little houses now "out of place" with new townhomes towering over them. There are still some nice very old homes there, though.

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so that old building was a fire station? I didn't know that. Seems so small.

As far as the old houses behind it, I'm not sure where you're looking. The vast majority of the remaining ones are in pretty decrepit conditions.

I'm all for saving historic homes, but I'm not sure the row houses along Washington qualify.

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so that old building was a fire station? I didn't know that. Seems so small.

As far as the old houses behind it, I'm not sure where you're looking. The vast majority of the remaining ones are in pretty decrepit conditions.

I'm all for saving historic homes, but I'm not sure the row houses along Washington qualify.

I was actually doubling back to check out Washington Ave. bldgs. from the other side, south of Washington. There were no row houses on that side, that I saw.

In reference to the fire station, I recently saw an image of how it looked years ago. It was a nice pic. As usual, I looked for the link again, and couldn't find it.

oops, found it! again... thought it was on this site: http://www.houstondeco.org/1930s/station11.html

Wow, says it was in use til 1991...surprised that it lasted that long. It looks so little.

Edited by NenaE
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  • 1 month later...
Chalk up another one for Washington Avenue. This one is across the street from the Core Apartments, near the intersection of Washington and Heights Blvd. Mixed-use office and retail.

260xStory.jpg

can't complain, esp in this economy...retail is never a bad thing, but only if the parking were in the back(how many times will developers botch this idea). exact address...3939 Washington (@leverkuhn)

Edited by sowanome
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Maybe it's in the other Washington Ave thread, but I think both the fire station and 5102 have been discussed previously. The city has issued permits at both addresses for a bar conversion. Last I heard, the fire station was going to be another Bronx Bar, and 5102 was going to be something called "Ei8ht".

"Ei8ht" is from the people behind Pub Fiction... Rusty LaRoue's will be next door (Word is it might be related to the "Rocky LaRoue's in College Station, Lubbock, & San Marcos)... They have been working pretty hard on these places for the past couple months.

Also, this place sounds pretty cool - a couple blocks of Washington, around ~700 Shepherd, near Rose, in a warehouse that's been empty for a while:

Block 7 Wine Company , Opening Spring 2009

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Also, this place sounds pretty cool - a couple blocks of Washington, around ~700 Shepherd, near Rose, in a warehouse that's been empty for a while:

Block 7 Wine Company , Opening Spring 2009

Yeah, they got their liquor permit a while ago, and I think I noted it somewhere above. Since then, I've seen some help-wanted ads for them. But not much discussion about the place. If it can compete as both a wine bar and a retailer, I would think it would do well.

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can't complain, esp in this economy...retail is never a bad thing, but only if the parking were in the back(how many times will developers botch this idea). exact address...3939 Washington (@leverkuhn)

They can't botch an idea that isn't attempted.

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They can't botch an idea that isn't attempted.

Yeah, but you can botch a rendering....(since they are planning to soon break ground on this...you can consider the front parking lot...botched.)

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aren't there a couple that look VERY similar to this already?

either the Benji's or Cova...same developer

I think Washington Ave is losing the walkability urban format people were hoping for. These developments don't encourage that. Oh well, it's still turning into a nice strip.

I totally agree, esp with the location of this development...(it has the apartments "The Core" across washington and the 2 story brick building across Leverkuhn....They are both built upon the sidewalk with parking in the rear=high density/walkable?). I just hope this type of development does not continue.

Edited by sowanome
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Yeah, but you can botch a rendering....(since they are planning to soon break ground on this...you can consider the front parking lot...botched.)

The rendering depicts with accuracy the structure that is proposed. It is a good rendering. ...not botched. To botch something is to make an error. For instance, if the parking were going to be in back according to the plans and the rendering depicted it in front, that would be a botched rendering.

Similarly, the developer did not botch the site plan because they did not ever intend to put parking behind the structure. Parking in the rear detracts from the relative marketability of the property. Besides which, the sidewalks along Washington suck so much that there's really no point at all in catering to pedestrians. If you want to see Washington transition into a more "urban" neighborhood, then you need to get the City to provide the appropriate infrastructure consistently along the corridor and also for them to re-evaluate their setback ordinances.

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The rendering depicts with accuracy the structure that is proposed. It is a good rendering. ...not botched. To botch something is to make an error. For instance, if the parking were going to be in back according to the plans and the rendering depicted it in front, that would be a botched rendering.

Similarly, the developer did not botch the site plan because they did not ever intend to put parking behind the structure. Parking in the rear detracts from the relative marketability of the property. Besides which, the sidewalks along Washington suck so much that there's really no point at all in catering to pedestrians. If you want to see Washington transition into a more "urban" neighborhood, then you need to get the City to provide the appropriate infrastructure consistently along the corridor and also for them to re-evaluate their setback ordinances.

Thank you, Niche, for crawling out of the semantics bushes and putting forth your argument.

I did not know that rear parking decreased marketability. I'd imagine that would be the norm in Houston which is not a pedestrian town. I thought it would have no net effect, but as I think about it, I would see it having a negative, rather than positive, effect on marketability. Let me know if any of you out there disagree.

Regarding pedestrian infrastructure, that involves better, wider sidewalks and perhaps some streetlights or landscaping. I agree that we would need to increase setbacks -- they are much too narrow as it is for any meaningful pedestrian traffic. For instance, the building that holds Guadalajara Bakery is set back maybe 6-8 feet from the curb (I'm just guessing based on recollection so correct me if I am wrong).

This is a chicken/egg issue -- if developers do not have rear parking, that may discourage pedestrian-related improvements by the city. But until those types of improvements are implemented by the city, then developers have little incentive to have rear parking (because the value created by arguably better aesthetics and pedestrian accessibility may not outweigh the minuses of rear parking without better pedestrian infrastructure).

That said, my concern is that (i) this is a missed window of opportunity for new developments to be planned for rear parking (because they will be around for a while), and (ii) many old and new structures already have rear parking (or no parking in the front). However, it is not my money at stake and I have not undertaken any effort to address my concern -- so I'll just have to confine my minor aesthetic beef to this message board.

I'm no urban planner by any stretch, so if any of the above is bunk, please fire away and correct me.

And yes, I am slow at work today.

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Regarding pedestrian infrastructure, that involves better, wider sidewalks and perhaps some streetlights or landscaping. I agree that we would need to increase setbacks -- they are much too narrow as it is for any meaningful pedestrian traffic. For instance, the building that holds Guadalajara Bakery is set back maybe 6-8 feet from the curb (I'm just guessing based on recollection so correct me if I am wrong).

Unless you have a variance, the setback from a major thoroughfare as it applies to new construction is 25 feet from the property line, which is typically between around four and eight feet from the edge of pavement. That's too much, IMO, and if developers want to use site plans with zero-lot-lines and parking in the rear, I think that that should be allowed with exceptions only at street corners where there might be a visibility problem or only if there are foreseeable roadway expansions...and these things should be codified in the ordinances so as to simplify or bypass the variance process as frequently as possible.

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The rendering depicts with accuracy the structure that is proposed. It is a good rendering. ...not botched.

Similarly, the developer did not botch the site plan because they did not ever intend to put parking behind the structure. Parking in the rear detracts from the relative marketability of the property. Besides which, the sidewalks along Washington suck so much that there's really no point at all in catering to pedestrians. If you want to see Washington transition into a more "urban" neighborhood, then you need to get the City to provide the appropriate infrastructure consistently along the corridor and also for them to re-evaluate their setback ordinances.

Gosh, biche.... Ok, in my opinion (my opinion only), it'd be nice to see the parking behind the building and it'd also be nice to see the building closer to the street. Therefore, I conclude that this idea was botched (by the city or whoever..)

All about the visual effects for me..

Edited by sowanome
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Please don't skewer me for this. I'm an engineer, not an archictect or urban planner. But, there's something I've never understood. Why does the location of a parking lot (front to back) affect one's ability to walk down the street? I mean, are people so dumb that they can't walk along the sidewalk between a parking lot and a street without getting hit by cars? I walk through parking lots, through parking garages, along streets without sidewalks all the time. Heck, I ride my bike IN the street all the time. What side of the building a parking lot was on has never been a factor in whether I walk or not. I decide to walk (or not) based on how far it is and what I've got to carry.

Washington Ave has too much retail space and bars to be supported only by the population within walking distance. Lots more is planned. Making it hard for cusumers outside of the immediate area to drive and park is like saying we don't want those customers. Someone's got to support the oversaturation of bars and restaurants.

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In the past week, near the new Busty (Rusty?) LaRoue's and Ei8ht, they have added more sidewalks along Washington Ave, and behind it, along Center St. They also tore down Lee's Upholstry (which was behind them) on Center St. - maybe for more parking? I know that Crew gym (between Shepherd & Durham) is advertising that they are adding more parking - this lot would be a couple blocks away, but maybe that's what it's for?

Also, that elementary school in the neighborhood (also on Center Street) is for sale. Hopefully it will not ALL be parking!

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In the past week, near the new Busty (Rusty?) LaRoue's and Ei8ht, they have added more sidewalks along Washington Ave, and behind it, along Center St. They also tore down Lee's Upholstry (which was behind them) on Center St. - maybe for more parking? I know that Crew gym (between Shepherd & Durham) is advertising that they are adding more parking - this lot would be a couple blocks away, but maybe that's what it's for?

Also, that elementary school in the neighborhood (also on Center Street) is for sale. Hopefully it will not ALL be parking!

Hopefully it IS all parking, so these establishments don't ruin the surrounding neighborhoods.

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In the past week, near the new Busty (Rusty?) LaRoue's and Ei8ht, they have added more sidewalks along Washington Ave, and behind it, along Center St. They also tore down Lee's Upholstry (which was behind them) on Center St. - maybe for more parking? I know that Crew gym (between Shepherd & Durham) is advertising that they are adding more parking - this lot would be a couple blocks away, but maybe that's what it's for?

Also, that elementary school in the neighborhood (also on Center Street) is for sale. Hopefully it will not ALL be parking!

actually, minus the outbuildings, that school is really cool. i saw an article in Dwell magazine last year about a school turned in to really great lofts/studios. when i tried to google it, i couldn't find that article but saw plenty of similar projects. of course, this is houston and nothing is worth saving, so it will go the way of the Dodo... but it's a shame.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Just saw this in a chron article. New Bullritos coming to Shepherd/Washington area.

"He opened the La Porte restaurant in September and plans to open 10 more Houston-area Bullritos in the next 18 months. The next location is planned for Shepherd Drive near Washington Avenue."

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6421432.html

Another burrito fast food chain to join MacDonald's Chipotle down the road on Shepherd coming to the neighborhood. Looks disgusting! I prefer my dive Tex-Mex places with good tortillas.

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Another burrito fast food chain to join MacDonald's Chipotle down the road on Shepherd coming to the neighborhood. Looks disgusting! I prefer my dive Tex-Mex places with good tortillas.

They will have some competition with El Rey being so close and popular. Plus Freebirds is about a mile away

Edited by cosmic08
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