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Wyndham Hotel in East Downtown


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HBJ is reporting that San Antonio developer, Ocean2Ocean, is planning to build a 12-story, 250 room Wyndham brand hotel on the East Downtown block bounded by Chartres, Rusk, St. Emanuel and Walker. The area is one block away from the Dynamo Stadium. Additionally, Swamplot is reporting that the hotel will cost $12 million and the banner will be either a Wyndham or Wyndham Grand hotel. The site was previously the On Leong Merchants Association building, which was recently demolished.

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There was talk about building a boutique hotel there, and I guess several of us assumed they would use that building, but maybe the plan was always to demolish.

Yeah, I heard the same thing and had also assumed they were going to refurbish the old building and maybe add on to it. Then I passed by several weeks ago and saw it demolished! Guess not.

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I see the development of the downtown stadia much like the development of the freeway or the GRB. This stadium is creating another buffer between East Downtown and 59. The narrow strip along Hutchins and St. Emanuel will develop it's own identity separate of it's neighbors to the east. This tower will solidify this perception. The railstop on Texas Ave. helps a bit but the parking lots help moreso to keep the 3rd world of Preston @ Congress away from the redeveloping 1st world. The Chinese and Vietnamese businesses could do more to capitalize on their new neighbors but I get the feeling they're just waiting to cash out to 3 storey townhome developers.

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I see the development of the downtown stadia much like the development of the freeway or the GRB. This stadium is creating another buffer between East Downtown and 59. The narrow strip along Hutchins and St. Emanuel will develop it's own identity separate of it's neighbors to the east. This tower will solidify this perception. The railstop on Texas Ave. helps a bit but the parking lots help moreso to keep the 3rd world of Preston @ Congress away from the redeveloping 1st world. The Chinese and Vietnamese businesses could do more to capitalize on their new neighbors but I get the feeling they're just waiting to cash out to 3 storey townhome developers.

I tend to disagree.

The whole area was a blighted area and not very inviting to anyone. Once the stadium gets built, and if they ever make the promenade as was planned, I can easily see more stuff being put in to remove some of the current blight that inundates the whole area.

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I'm saying the Stadium and Rail Line will "cap" development from the East and North respectivly. The area that has the greatest "urban" potential is the 3 block strip between Chartres/St. Emanuel/Hutchins St. on south. It has many foreign owners and will eventually parcel out nicely with low to mid rise structures. Dowling is going to be a very busy street again, this time as largly a buffer instead of a commercial collector (as to what remains in 3rd Ward).

This stadium is not a community coalesing device for the East End, in fact it's a another impedament to east-west mobility. Coupled with Minute Maid/GRB/Toyota Center/59N and you have effectively cut off the East End from East Downtown with the exception of a few thouroughfares. One being converted to rail, another pair primarily a feeder road for 45, and the other being Jenson/Franklin & Commerce streets that act as a pinched bottleneck flowing into the NE corner of downtown. That leaves Polk/Leland as the only dedicated neighborhood connectors.

The prominade will never happen (it was always just a UH Architecture school project, I should know I worked plenty of these types of projects in school); if it was realistically viable the area I described above would already be eager with transactions and anticipating with new builds. Instead you see the schitzo littering of gated townhome nabs, the frayed edges of bungalow nabs, and the stoic industrial bldgs of the past that make up the East End's figure/ground relationship. Too much uncertainy in uncertain times.

The East End nabs probably have benefited from their "urban island" status over the last couple of decades. I'd like to think that they wanted it this way, but just be careful of what you want.

Edited by infinite_jim
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Interesting that I took a pic of the demolition, and I'm TRYING to find the building before the demo in my files.

I guess my filing system needs a bit of work. Meanwhile:

DSC03311.JPG

this is the demolition of said building a few weeks ago.

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This stadium is not a community coalesing device for the East End, in fact it's a another impedament to east-west mobility. Coupled with Minute Maid/GRB/Toyota Center/59N and you have effectively cut off the East End from East Downtown with the exception of a few thouroughfares. One being converted to rail, another pair primarily a feeder road for 45, and the other being Jenson/Franklin & Commerce streets that act as a pinched bottleneck flowing into the NE corner of downtown. That leaves Polk/Leland as the only dedicated neighborhood connectors.

The East End nabs probably have benefited from their "urban island" status over the last couple of decades. I'd like to think that they wanted it this way, but just be careful of what you want.

Never said it was a device to bring the community together, however, the stadium isn't going to do quite as much as you are making out. What is the stadium cutting off? Rusk? Did you know a lot of people driving the 3 extra blocks to the railroad track? Rusk was used for people parking that go to Lucky's, there was no other use for it.

For the east end as a whole, I'd say the baseball stadium and convention center killed connector streets better than anything. Harrisburg used to split into Texas (eastbound) and Prairie (westbound) now, Prairie is part of the parking lot, and stadium. It is hard to take Harrisburg as in inbound to downtown road from the east end.

All I'm saying is, is that there are lots of distractions for that area as far as things to make it an island, this stadium is not making it any worse, none of the main streets currently used to get into, out of, or across the area are blocked by the new stadium.

you mentioned that after the stadium there are 2 or 3 paths for getting into east end, well, guess what, that's all there ever was. Go east just a tad more, you have a railroad track. you can cross that track at Harrisburg, McKinney, Polk and Leeland.

Harrisburg was killed by the baseball stadium (as mentioned above), McKinney was killed by the convention center, Polk survives and Leeland survives. So what is this new stadium destroying that wasn't already destroyed?

I guess I'm thinking of the east end as a whole, from 59 all the way out to 610. This stadium isn't destroying any of the connections that ever were, or still are available. As a result, this will not be as bad as you are making out.

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