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Porchman

Montrose HEB

  

93 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you support the HEB development?

    • Yes
      70
    • No
      13
    • Dunno
      5
    • Live in Montrose, but don't care
      3
    • Don't live in Montrose, so why should I care?
      2


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…and now with its own thread!

A few things that came out of the Neartown Association Forum today

-The footprint for the building will likely be along W Alabama. There will be pedestrian access from the W Alabama side and parking access from the south side.

-Parking alignment is going to be the biggest issue to the configuration of the lot. HEB seems to be looking at a combination of subterranean and surface parking, using about 2/3 of the existing plot, with the other 1/3 committed to green space. The Montrose Land Defense Coalition is advocating parking on top of the store and additional retail, using only about ½ the plot, with the other ½ committed to park/green space. They also conceive head-in parking spaces on the Dunlavy and W. Alabama side. (ummm…yeah).

-HEB wants to make the store neighborhood friendly. They are working to speak to the “3 T’s” – Traffic, Trees and Trash. They are looking at presenting three different renderings for neighborhood feedback. One concept mentioned is something complimentary to the Menil. They also plan to use shorter, 40-foot trailers to service the store (something they are doing at the Buffalo Speedway store). Ultimately, HEB asserts a recognition that not dropping a big box is the best way to woo the ‘hood.

- The Montrose Land Defense Coalition has presented a rendering of a pond, a dog meadow, a performing arts shell. (Sorry no pics and they have not posted any at their Facebook site, either). Councilwoman Sue Lovell is strongly supporting a park for part of the land. She would like it to focus on performing arts space as a compliment to the visual arts at the Menil and in addition to the facilities other local parks offer. In her concept, this would not only benefit the neighborhood, but it could also benefit the schools in the area.

-HEB wants to make the facility environmentally friendly. They are focused on energy conservation and water conservation. They may use porous material on the parking lot. They are not committed to LEED certification because it’s freaking expensive.

-The rough budget is $16-$17 million for the land and $30-$40 million for the building.

-HEB spokespeople assert that they want to open in 2011. (Since they don’t have renderings and plats in May, 2010, and because they are facing some neighborhood concerns, I find that doubtful).

Edited by Porchman
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-HEB wants to make the store neighborhood friendly.

Easily accomplished. Don't build it.

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It would seriously be stupid to have an HEB across the street from a Fiesta and down the street from Kroger, I don't get it.

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It would seriously be stupid to have an HEB across the street from a Fiesta and down the street from Kroger, I don't get it.

It's a strategic decision all about brand positioning. By and large, today's hip but young Inner Loopers become tomorrow's affluent suburbanites, and HEB wants their brand loyalty.

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I can think of worse than an HEB for that piece of land - any attempt to woo neighbors (as I am one) is fine by me. Green space? Subterranean parking? Sharing renderings with the neighborhood? I'm not sure what else we can expect... If they do somehow wind up allocating more to green space and incorporating additional retail (not sure how there would be space), then even better

Maybe I'm not hip enough to really appreciate the Fiesta as it is, but a little sprucing up due to impending competition couldn't hurt. They have served the area well, but that is one ugly strip center

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I'm not sure what else we can expect... If they do somehow wind up allocating more to green space and incorporating additional retail (not sure how there would be space), then even better

This was generally the reaction of the attendants.

Also, Okie, they purportedly have offered a key-coded entrance from Sul Ross for local residents. It was reported that the Lancaster Place Association has turned this down.

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It's a strategic decision all about brand positioning. By and large, today's hip but young Inner Loopers become tomorrow's affluent suburbanites, and HEB wants their brand loyalty.

If you mean their own HEB brand products, I've found that not everything that carries their name is better than or even equal to the national brands. Often, there is very little price difference.

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…and now with its own thread!

A few things that came out of the Neartown Association Forum today

-The footprint for the building will likely be along W Alabama. There will be pedestrian access from the W Alabama side and parking access from the south side.

-Parking alignment is going to be the biggest issue to the configuration of the lot. HEB seems to be looking at a combination of subterranean and surface parking, using about 2/3 of the existing plot, with the other 1/3 committed to green space. The Montrose Land Defense Coalition is advocating parking on top of the store and additional retail, using only about ½ the plot, with the other ½ committed to park/green space. They also conceive head-in parking spaces on the Dunlavy and W. Alabama side. (ummm…yeah).

-HEB wants to make the store neighborhood friendly. They are working to speak to the “3 T’s” – Traffic, Trees and Trash. They are looking at presenting three different renderings for neighborhood feedback. One concept mentioned is something complimentary to the Menil. They also plan to use shorter, 40-foot trailers to service the store (something they are doing at the Buffalo Speedway store). Ultimately, HEB asserts a recognition that not dropping a big box is the best way to woo the ‘hood.

- The Montrose Land Defense Coalition has presented a rendering of a pond, a dog meadow, a performing arts shell. (Sorry no pics and they have not posted any at their Facebook site, either). Councilwoman Sue Lovell is strongly supporting a park for part of the land. She would like it to focus on performing arts space as a compliment to the visual arts at the Menil and in addition to the facilities other local parks offer. In her concept, this would not only benefit the neighborhood, but it could also benefit the schools in the area.

-HEB wants to make the facility environmentally friendly. They are focused on energy conservation and water conservation. They may use porous material on the parking lot. They are not committed to LEED certification because it’s freaking expensive.

-The rough budget is $16-$17 million for the land and $30-$40 million for the building.

-HEB spokespeople assert that they want to open in 2011. (Since they don’t have renderings and plats in May, 2010, and because they are facing some neighborhood concerns, I find that doubtful).

Hats off to them for making the effort to be neighborhood and environmentally friendly. We see too little of that in Houston development. It does seem peculiar to have a supermarket across the street from another supermarket, but no more one supposes than the agglomeration of Starbucks at West Gray and Shepherd, so have at it.

Could they not share parking with the Fiesta strip center across the street? That lot seems to have had extra capacity.

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It would seriously be stupid to have an HEB across the street from a Fiesta and down the street from Kroger, I don't get it.

Why? Grocery stores across the street from each other are a common thing, at least in this city.

HEB is perhaps the best at making a grocery store specifically suited to the neighborhood (Central Market, Mi Tienda, Buffalo Market, etc). I welcome this development.

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Yes it is stratospherically stupid to have two grocery stores opposite each other but this is Houston and stupid never stopped it from doing anything. Anyhow there won't be two stores opposite each other for long and frankly I won't be sorry to see the back of Fiesta. It is in a particularly horrid, car-oriented little suburban-style strip center and it is refreshing to see HEB at least attempting to tailor their development to the neighbourhood.

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It would seriously be stupid to have an HEB across the street from a Fiesta and down the street from Kroger, I don't get it.

Nothing new. They just did it last year on Buffalo Speedway. 

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<br />Nothing new. They just did it last year on Buffalo Speedway. <br /><br /><br />
<br

Yes and look what improvements the Buffalo Market sparked at Kroger across the street. Hopefully the same will be done with Weingartens/Safeway/Apple Tree/Fiesta. A touchup is long overdue for that strip. It's at least encouraging to see that HEB seems to be seriously interested in what the hood-dwellers (like me) think.

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I think the Forum update should be welcome by the residents.

They own the property.. they can do whatever they want. Still, they have and continue to listen to the locals and appear so far like they are willing to go the extra step as far as site layout and building design to make the neighborhood happy.

And I don't understand the "grocery store across from another grocery store doesn't make sense mentality" Competition is supposed to be good for us. Fiesta already has competition from the Kroger. The above mentality makes it seem like those that have it are in some la-la land where everyone in a 1-2 mile radius goes to only this "neighborhood" store... and competition will destroy that neighborhood store. Competition, Disco Krogers, is already there. Competition should make the Fiesta better.. or force them out ( and then you can pointlessly petition again for a herb garden and dog park )

The Fiesta is a dump relative to the Kroger.. their selection isn't as great as the Kroger. I just don't understand the loyalty. Fiesta may be a small company compared to HEB.. but it isnt exactly Mom&Pop either anymore. If it were the exact same crappy grocery store in the same empty strip center with a Kroger or Randalls name.. nobody would be shedding a tear for the possible demise brought on by competition.

Also.. if HEB says they wanna open in 2011.. take it to the bank. I've worked with them before and have seen how fast they can book it. Once they have a design approved.. and it's not like they have a neighborhood ARC to worry about.. Their construction documentation process is exceptionally speedy.

Edited by Highway6

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H-E-B spokeswoman Cyndy Garza-Roberts said that the company wants to serve the Montrose area but is still determining whether it will build on the 7.7-acre tract, once home to Wilshire Village Apartments.

H-E-B has suggested it might build walls at the ends of the streets to deaden noise from the proposed store.

Brian Crimmins of the planning department said the city will work with H-E-B to establish a “landscape buffer” between the site and homeowners and to preserve trees on the site

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/nb/heights/news/7004079.html

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But the Rev. Lisa Hunt, of St. Steven's, invoked a “trust but verify” approach when looking forward.

“It's wonderful that H-E-B is at the table and that they're actively working with our community, but I also know we don't have a site plan,” Hunt said.

Get used to disappointment. HEB doesn't owe you a site plan, Rev Hunt.

Edited by Highway6

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I don't live in Montrose but I think it is cool that H-E-B is considering putting in underground parking for the store similar to the Randall's in Midtown.

In other cities such as Miami, Washington D.C. and Annapolis, MD some of these big box stores have multi level parking due to spacial constraints and it would be great to see more or this type of development in Houston.

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I don't live in Montrose but I think it is cool that H-E-B is considering putting in underground parking for the store similar to the Randall's in Midtown.

In other cities such as Miami, Washington D.C. and Annapolis, MD some of these big box stores have multi level parking due to spacial constraints and it would be great to see more or this type of development in Houston.

Couldn't agree more. There are reasonably large grocery stores bang in the center of Galway, a medieval town in the West of Ireland, that provide ample parking by using multiple levels above and below street level. Their walls are clad in limestone to mimic the old town walls. You'd hardly notice they were there walking past.

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But the Rev. Lisa Hunt, of St. Steven's, invoked a “trust but verify” approach when looking forward.

“It's wonderful that H-E-B is at the table and that they're actively working with our community, but I also know we don't have a site plan,” Hunt said.

Get used to disappointment. HEB doesn't owe you a site plan, Rev Hunt.

As I mentioned in my original post, they are planning to offer three different renderings. Those should show the site plan. I think everybody at the forum felt things were a bit in the abstract without such plans.

One thing that I failed to mention: In order to minimize impact on the surrounding neighborhood and to minimize the tree impact, they are looking at putting the service docks on West Alabama. Not sure how that will work aesthetically or with West Alabama traffic.

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As I mentioned in my original post, they are planning to offer three different renderings. Those should show the site plan. I think everybody at the forum felt things were a bit in the abstract without such plans.

One thing that I failed to mention: In order to minimize impact on the surrounding neighborhood and to minimize the tree impact, they are looking at putting the service docks on West Alabama. Not sure how that will work aesthetically or with West Alabama traffic.

Yeah, the docks are going to be interesting.

If I remember correctly, the docks are locaded in an alley behind fiesta.

ijust hope they eningeer enough room to move those monster around, but then again, they could schedule for deliveries at night...

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As I mentioned in my original post, they are planning to offer three different renderings. Those should show the site plan. I think everybody at the forum felt things were a bit in the abstract without such plans.

One thing that I failed to mention: In order to minimize impact on the surrounding neighborhood and to minimize the tree impact, they are looking at putting the service docks on West Alabama. Not sure how that will work aesthetically or with West Alabama traffic.

I just don't like the "trust but verify" snotty attitude.

That's great they are offering up some different renderings and site plans... but HEB owes us nothing.

And what if at the end of the day, HEB says Screw it, and plops down a big box in a sea of concrete... What's she gonna verify then ? She's going to verify that she can't do squat about it and will have to live with whatever HEB decides.

....................

Service docks on Alabama sounds like a terrible idea. Hopefully they just meant delivery access. No offense to the houses that back on to the property, but you are less important than surrounding area as a whole. Anything not geared toward the pedestrian on Alabama or Dunlavy will negatively impact the surrounding neighborhood and area. Put in visual and sound buffers to help if need be, but the service side of the HEB needs to face those houses that back on to the property... not Alabama or Duvlavy.

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The arse end of Central Market faces Westheimer, but it's discreetly tucked behind a high beige stucco (it is Houston after all) wall. Presumably they have something like that in mind.

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I just don't like the "trust but verify" snotty attitude.

That's great they are offering up some different renderings and site plans... but HEB owes us nothing.

And what if at the end of the day, HEB says Screw it, and plops down a big box in a sea of concrete... What's she gonna verify then ? She's going to verify that she can't do squat about it and will have to live with whatever HEB decides.

True, but they don't need to explain or present anything to anybody in the community in the end. However, they need to establish a market in a new neighborhood, and present themselves as good neighbors for future markets. There is a hum that they want a market in the Heights. If they piss off Montrose, can you imagine the fallout!??! Everybody is concerned about the big box. I just think we need context for concern. HEB is supposedly going to have renderings available soon.

....................

Service docks on Alabama sounds like a terrible idea. Hopefully they just meant delivery access. No offense to the houses that back on to the property, but you are less important than surrounding area as a whole. Anything not geared toward the pedestrian on Alabama or Dunlavy will negatively impact the surrounding neighborhood and area. Put in visual and sound buffers to help if need be, but the service side of the HEB needs to face those houses that back on to the property... not Alabama or Duvlavy.

I think there needs to be some serious voice around this. I believe there is a way to create barrier zones for all purposes. I think a southward-facing loading notch on the Sul Ross-Branard side with an entry drive on Alabama and and an exit around the planned lot would work well with proper barrier from Sul Ross-Branard.

Ultimately, the trees are at question. Do we want ugly, inconvenient loading docks on West Alabama or to preserve the oldest trees? If both, find $17 million to buy the lot. Personally, I would like HEB to preserve the younger trees at the perimeter. In the long run, I think it will make for a better devlopment.

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The area south of Wilshire has a lot of renters and absentee owners from whom you're unlikely to get a lot of protest if they use that side for service. The roads in that area are in an appalling state of disrepair as well, perhaps this would be an opportunity for an upgrade.

On the other hand for the owner-occupiers there, they should be heard as well, since both their investments and QOL are at stake. I care less about the fleeting views that commuters have from cars tearing along West Alabama at 50 mph - the sorry state of that road today - than I do about people invested in a residential community.

Edited by sidegate

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On the other hand for the owner-occupiers there, they should be heard as well, since both their investments and QOL are at stake. I care less about the fleeting views that commuters have from cars tearing along West Alabama at 50 mph - the sorry state of that road today - than I do about people invested in a residential community.

There are 14 properties that back on to this piece of land.. half are rentals. The majority of the lots were purchased after 2003. Only 3 of them appear to be non-rentals purchased earlier, mid to late 90s.

How long was this complex run-down?

Where's the value of purchasing right next to multi-family housing in the first place ?

Those invested in the properties near the HEB site have known or should have known for years that they were next to a big property ripe for potential development. Those invested longer term knew they were next to a multi-housing facility that had seen better days and could potentially could go further downhill.

Those investors should have know the potential risks when they bought their properties. They can be heard, they can hope HEB will listen, but HEB owes them nothing. Are their investments at stake? Potentially Yes.... Is it HEB's fault? No.

West Alabama isn't a freeway.. it is not only for commuters..

Neighborhood friendly design means designing with ALabama and Dunlavy taking precedent over the needs of a handful of home-buyers who couldn't see this coming.

__________________

Also.. just to give some size perspective.

The entire lot is 334,000 SF..

The Buffalo HEB has a footprint of about 68,000 SF... That alone would take up about 20% of the site.

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Yes it is stratospherically stupid to have two grocery stores opposite each other but this is Houston and stupid never stopped it from doing anything. Anyhow there won't be two stores opposite each other for long and frankly I won't be sorry to see the back of Fiesta. It is in a particularly horrid, car-oriented little suburban-style strip center and it is refreshing to see HEB at least attempting to tailor their development to the neighbourhood.

this is what I was going to say.

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I'd hazard a guess from your handle that you aren't a local. I on the other hand very much am and remember Alabama when it was a neighborhood street. West Alabama is now effectively a traffic sink - have you seen the no left hand turn signals that appear for six hours a day, or the no right turn on red from the neighbourhood streets? Those measures are designed to keep traffic moving (Bill White's mantra), to stop people from turning on to streets in their OWN neighborhood, and to stgop those who would have the temerity to turn on to Alabama and force traffic to slow down - damn them to hell!!

And you can say HEB doesn't owe the neighbourhood anything all you want but if they don't respect my neighbourhood they won't get my business.

Edited by sidegate
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True, but they don't need to explain or present anything to anybody in the community in the end. However, they need to establish a market in a new neighborhood, and present themselves as good neighbors for future markets. There is a hum that they want a market in the Heights. If they piss off Montrose, can you imagine the fallout!??!

The market that they're trying to reach is fairly transient, so the neighborhood could be thought of as having a short memory where these things are concerned. (The more permanent folks tend to be a bit older, relatively affluent, and gravitate to a more up-market experience, like Whole Foods.) In the end, HEB will crush Fiesta in terms of product, price, placement, and promotion...so it probably wouldn't really matter that a few of the hardcore old fogies that don't shop at Whole Foods hold a grudge...certainly not enough that they are justified in making multi-million-dollar architectural accommodations.

If HEB is being sensitive to the neighborhood, I wouldn't be looking a gift horse in the mouth. Make realistic suggestions--politely--and express gratitude for their consideration for something that they could've gotten away with foregoing.

As for the Heights, the demographic is older, more affluent, and more permanent. It'd be a good idea not to overtly piss them off. But (for reasons not clear to me) they don't have the same level of clout where grassroots NIMBYism is concerned. Maybe its that beggars can't be choosers.

Personally, I would like HEB to preserve the younger trees at the perimeter. In the long run, I think it will make for a better devlopment.

I second that. Maybe they could hire the sculptor that's been carving interesting things out of Galveston's dead oaks to do something with the trunks, and then incorporate them into the entrance design. It wouldn't be very contemporary, aesthetically, but it'd sure make the store a landmark and, I think, make Montrose (as) happy (as it's ever going to be).

Just a thought...

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The market that they're trying to reach is fairly transient, so the neighborhood could be thought of as having a short memory where these things are concerned. (The more permanent folks tend to be a bit older, relatively affluent, and gravitate to a more up-market experience, like Whole Foods.) In the end, HEB will crush Fiesta in terms of product, price, placement, and promotion...so it probably wouldn't really matter that a few of the hardcore old fogies that don't shop at Whole Foods hold a grudge...certainly not enough that they are justified in making multi-million-dollar architectural accommodations.

If HEB is being sensitive to the neighborhood, I wouldn't be looking a gift horse in the mouth. Make realistic suggestions--politely--and express gratitude for their consideration for something that they could've gotten away with foregoing.

As for the Heights, the demographic is older, more affluent, and more permanent. It'd be a good idea not to overtly piss them off. But (for reasons not clear to me) they don't have the same level of clout where grassroots NIMBYism is concerned. Maybe its that beggars can't be choosers.

Just a thought...

Fiesta has much to offer that the other stores do not:

- produce prices are much less than either Kroger or HEB (and certainly less than Whole Foods)

- the deli case carries (or did until recently) a greater variety at lower prices

- the fresh bakery section, though smaller, is much cheaper than all of the others and better quality than Kroger (my opinion)

- the layout of the store makes it much much easier to shop there often when you just need a few things - try running in and out of the Buffalo HEB quickly when you run out of dogfood

- a decent beer and wine selection (all have that, but add convenience at Fiesta)

- friendlier staff than Kroger on West Gray (they have gotten better since HEB opened, though, but they had been downright rude)

- I can walk there, and many others do also (I have yet to see anyone walk to Buffalo HEB)

If the Montrose HEB can stay compact enough to keep the walkers and allow quick stops for a few items, than I would be happy with it. Once the stores get too big (Buffalo HEB, or West Gray Kroger) it becomes much less convenient. I shop HEB for a few items, but Fiesta gets the majority of my business.

Regarding affluence in the vicinity of Montrose HEB, Boulevard Oaks and Southampton are just a few blocks away. And, Montrose itself is not known as a bargain, by any means. But, there are plenty of us fogies who would rather shop somewhere besides the overpriced and overhyped Whole Foods, soon to add their 2nd store in the neighborhood.

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I'd hazard a guess from your handle that you aren't a local. I on the other hand very much am and remember Alabama when it was a neighborhood street. West Alabama is now effectively a traffic sink - have you seen the no left hand turn signals that appear for six hours a day, or the no right turn on red from the neighbourhood streets? Those measures are designed to keep traffic moving (Bill White's mantra), to stop people from turning on to streets in their OWN neighborhood, and to stgop those who would have the temerity to turn on to Alabama and force traffic to slow down - damn them to hell!!

And you can say HEB doesn't owe the neighbourhood anything all you want but if they don't respect my neighbourhood they won't get my business.

Your guess would be wrong; we are neighbors. I shop Fiesta weekly and drive W Alabama daily.

While i dislike the middle lane situation, the increase in speed is negligible. W Alabama is still slower than Richmond, slower than W gray, slower than some parts of Westheimer... if you're going to make any of these streets a more pedestrian friendly E-W corridor, Alabama is as good a candidate as the rest. If HEB is willing to be a good neighbor and help to do that.. that is a good thing in my books.

Ultimately.. if the HEB and the neighbors want a pedestrian friendly lot, than the lot needs to be accessible to pedestrians coming to and going from the lot.

Putting their arse end to Alabama would be the worst thing they could do.

All of this is a moot point... like i said two posts ago, I'm sure they meant they only intend delivery access from Alabama...

There is no way they put their back end... 300' of emergency exits, docks, lower quality materials, transformers, compactors, etc stretching the length of the property along Alabama.

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...there are plenty of us fogies...

I never meant to imply that everyone from one category goes one way and everyone from another category goes a different way.

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The market that they're trying to reach is fairly transient, so the neighborhood could be thought of as having a short memory where these things are concerned. (The more permanent folks tend to be a bit older, relatively affluent, and gravitate to a more up-market experience, like Whole Foods.) In the end, HEB will crush Fiesta in terms of product, price, placement, and promotion...so it probably wouldn't really matter that a few of the hardcore old fogies that don't shop at Whole Foods hold a grudge...certainly not enough that they are justified in making multi-million-dollar architectural accommodations.

If HEB is being sensitive to the neighborhood, I wouldn't be looking a gift horse in the mouth. Make realistic suggestions--politely--and express gratitude for their consideration for something that they could've gotten away with foregoing.

As for the Heights, the demographic is older, more affluent, and mor permanent. It'd be a good idea not to overtly piss them off. But (for reasons not clear to me) they don't have the same level of clout where grassroots NIMBYism is concerned. Maybe its that beggars can't be choos

Montrose is transient? Don't tell that to Councilwoman Lovell or, for that matter, Mayor Parker. They'll kick your butt.

Not sure HEB can "crush" Fiesta. They actually don't have the price point, and they're product is not par. HEB is going to go the pantry-hybrid store with fluffy cheese and wine. There are still people living in Montrose for whom that might not be important: you know, the lactose intolerant, the recovering alcoholic, oh, and the non-what-White-people-like.

Wait! The Heights is more affluent?! When did this happen? Can we stand on our hill (nub), hold our noses and say "nahhhh?" (We've been feeling this for some time, you know).

True NIMBYism takes government. Two District Council members, most of the Council-at-large, and the Mayor all live in Montrose.

I second that. Maybe they could hire the sculptor that's been carving think interesting things out of Galveston's dead oaks to do something with the trunks, and then incorporate them into the entrance design. It wouldn't be very contemporary, aesthetically, but it'd sure make the store a landmark and, I think, make Montrose (as) happy (as it's ever going to be).

Just a thought...

Very Vulcan! I'm still thinking keeping the existing trees around the perimeter and putting in a highway-sized wall on the West side may be the best mediation.

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Fiesta has much to offer that the other stores do not:

- produce prices are much less than either Kroger or HEB (and certainly less than Whole Foods)

- the deli case carries (or did until recently) a greater variety at lower prices

- the fresh bakery section, though smaller, is much cheaper than all of the others and better quality than Kroger (my opinion)

- the layout of the store makes it much much easier to shop there often when you just need a few things - try running in and out of the Buffalo HEB quickly when you run out of dogfood

- a decent beer and wine selection (all have that, but add convenience at Fiesta)

- friendlier staff than Kroger on West Gray (they have gotten better since HEB opened, though, but they had been downright rude)

- I can walk there, and many others do also (I have yet to see anyone walk to Buffalo HEB)

If the Montrose HEB can stay compact enough to keep the walkers and allow quick stops for a few items, than I would be happy with it. Once the stores get too big (Buffalo HEB, or West Gray Kroger) it becomes much less convenient. I shop HEB for a few items, but Fiesta gets the majority of my business.

Regarding affluence in the vicinity of Montrose HEB, Boulevard Oaks and Southampton are just a few blocks away. And, Montrose itself is not known as a bargain, by any means. But, there are plenty of us fogies who would rather shop somewhere besides the overpriced and overhyped Whole Foods, soon to add their 2nd store in the neighborhood.

That Fiesta is crap. I will give you the edge in better prices but HEB is highly competitive and adaptable. Every Fiesta in Houston is essentially the same and outdated, while HEB seems to study its demographics closely and plans appropriately. I welcome a new HEB and the competition it will bring. Hopefully Fiesta will either upgrade or fall, same with Krogers. I can certainly see either Kroger's or Fiesta falling to HEB (more likely Fiesta).

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That Fiesta is crap. I will give you the edge in better prices but HEB is highly competitive and adaptable. Every Fiesta in Houston is essentially the same and outdated, while HEB seems to study its demographics closely and plans appropriately. I welcome a new HEB and the competition it will bring. Hopefully Fiesta will either upgrade or fall, same with Krogers. I can certainly see either Kroger's or Fiesta falling to HEB (more likely Fiesta).

Bingo. HEB abandoned the one-size-fits-all paradigm years ago. And at the end of the day, it's because they understand market segmentation. They can carve a niche for themselves...anywhere.

Be it affluent predominantly-white suburban (League City), mixed-income slightly-older predominantly Hispanic (Gulfgate), low-income younger heavily Hispanic (Mi Tienda), poor Black (Scott & OST), top-of-the-market regional draw (Central Market), affluent predominantly-white urban locals (Buffalo Market), or mixed low-income budget-conscious (Joe V's)...HEB levers a crazy amount of market research to their advantage and is extraordinarily protective of market share. And they've been successful. HEB has managed to maintain and even grow market share slightly as Wal-Mart entered the grocery business in the Houston market and proceeded to whoop Kroger's, Safeway's, and Fiesta's respective asses.

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Montrose is transient? Don't tell that to Councilwoman Lovell or, for that matter, Mayor Parker. They'll kick your butt.

Not sure HEB can "crush" Fiesta. They actually don't have the price point, and they're product is not par. HEB is going to go the pantry-hybrid store with fluffy cheese and wine. There are still people living in Montrose for whom that might not be important: you know, the lactose intolerant, the recovering alcoholic, oh, and the non-what-White-people-like.

Wait! The Heights is more affluent?! When did this happen? Can we stand on our hill (nub), hold our noses and say "nahhhh?" (We've been feeling this for some time, you know).

True NIMBYism takes government. Two District Council members, most of the Council-at-large, and the Mayor all live in Montrose.

I'll try again.

Montrose has a strategic imperative that is lacking in the Heights because it has more for-rent and multifamily dwellings and is closer to multiple universities...with that comes a more youthful and transient population...and it is a population whose future potential buying power is very attractive for an industry with such notoriously razor-thin margins. By developing brand loyalty with them early on, HEB benefits in the future.

Compare that with the young adults in the Heights. They're brown-colored...and a lot of them already have kids, are struggling economically, and really aren't going to be the company's bread-and-butter...except perhaps by way of volume...and even then, only for so long as they aren't displaced into a neighborhood best-served by a Joe V's. HEB isn't going to go out of their way to try to develop brand loyalty among transient young folks there. They're going to target the increasing number of home-owning Gen Xers and Boomers with a fairly high net worth, high incomes, and intentions on staying in the Heights for a fairly long time. The neighborhood has a memory (and will, at least until dementia starts to set in) and should be pandered to obsessively...even if their current grocery options are less-than-ideal and just about anything new and geared to them would be acceptable.

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Of all the grocery chains in our area, I trust HEB the most to make a store that fits in well with the community.

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On either Westheimer or Kirby, I saw a small gray H-E-B. Cool in a way, as those H-E-Bs are becoming an endangered species in many aspects. So at first, I thought this thread was talking about that HEB.

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Of all the grocery chains in our area, I trust HEB the most to make a store that fits in well with the community.

Trust HEB? I wouldn't. They lied to us for years in Galveston, saying that they were going to redevelop their 61st Street property and build a large format HEB on the site. We were encouraged to stay in their shopping center and signed two 5 year leases with them, the second one right before Hurricane Ike. After the storm and their lie that they sustained 2 feet of water damage, they abandoned their store and all plans for redevelopment. They sold the property to the Mosberger family to locate a charter school at. The charter school has been a very good landlord, BTW.

Moral of the story, don't trust HEB. They will do whatever they want to do.

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Hey, if I were on an island decimated by a hurricane and everyone had left, I might not be so prone to redevelop a property either, but at any rate, that doesn't mean that any of the other grocery chains would be better at developing a grocery store that suits the neighborhood. I didn't say I trust HEB outright, I said I trust them more than any other grocery chain in the area to build a store that suits the neighborhood, most of which make little to no concession to suit the customer base.

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Hey, if I were on an island decimated by a hurricane and everyone had left, I might not be so prone to redevelop a property either, but at any rate, that doesn't mean that any of the other grocery chains would be better at developing a grocery store that suits the neighborhood. I didn't say I trust HEB outright, I said I trust them more than any other grocery chain in the area to build a store that suits the neighborhood, most of which make little to no concession to suit the customer base.

I trust Scott McLellan absolutely.

Not the Bush II press secretary Scott McLellan, I'm talking about the HEB guy. He's on TV all the time telling me how I can save money shopping at HEB, so he's got to be trustworthy.

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I trust Scott McLellan absolutely.

Not the Bush II press secretary Scott McLellan, I'm talking about the HEB guy. He's on TV all the time telling me how I can save money shopping at HEB, so he's got to be trustworthy.

All i can think of whenever I see him in those commercials is that he should be making enough money to afford a better cut suit. Not the intent of the commercials, I'm sure, but I shop at Kroger, anyway.

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I like the idea. Lot's of great trees on the property. This way they might save some of them. . 

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I wonder how high it would be? And how do you get your grocery cart down...everyone is gonna have to take an elevator?

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I wonder how high it would be? And how do you get your grocery cart down...everyone is gonna have to take an elevator?

Based on a few high school experiences, parking garage ramps with speed bumps and shopping carts make an awesome combination. Bring a helmet.

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I wonder how high it would be? And how do you get your grocery cart down...everyone is gonna have to take an elevator?

I have it on good authority that all entrances will be accessible only by ladders to ensure this HEB is the safest place to hide in the event of a zombie outbreak.

Goods will be delivered to the ground level via a complex system of levers, pulleys and buckets. Shopping carts won't be available for this store as Scott McLellan reads HAIF and knows we hate errant carts in the neighborhood. All goods will be carried around the store on the backs of imported third world children.

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I have it on good authority that all entrances will be accessible only by ladders to ensure this HEB is the safest place to hide in the event of a zombie outbreak.

Goods will be delivered to the ground level via a complex system of levers, pulleys and buckets. Shopping carts won't be available for this store as Scott McLellan reads HAIF and knows we hate errant carts in the neighborhood. All goods will be carried around the store on the backs of imported third world children.

lol, {insert dancing banana}

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I have it on good authority that all entrances will be accessible only by ladders to ensure this HEB is the safest place to hide in the event of a zombie outbreak.

Goods will be delivered to the ground level via a complex system of levers, pulleys and buckets. Shopping carts won't be available for this store as Scott McLellan reads HAIF and knows we hate errant carts in the neighborhood. All goods will be carried around the store on the backs of imported third world children.

Furthermore, express home deliveries will be conducted utilizing a series of trebuchets/catapults. Accuracy between 40-60 percent...if it does not fall within 100 metres of your property, it's 10% off!

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