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Park Memorial Condominiums R.I.P.


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I know that there was a thread that discussed the fate of the Park Memorial Condos on Memorial Drive at Detering, but I suppose it was a subtopic of another discussion. As many know, this complex made the rather rare decision to put all 108 units up for sale en masse. This apparently infuriated at least one resident, who retaliated by notifying the City of an engineers report that there were structural problems in the complex. The City responded by condemning the property based on the report, and ordered everyone out. The owners sued the City, and the court found that the City could not condemn a structure without getting their own reports.

The owners finally found a buyer who plans to raze the buildings and put up 372 apartments. The demolition began immediately, and is nearly complete already.

I used to own one of these units. As I drove down Memorial this evening, I saw the demo, and stopped to get a few pics. Here is one of my former condo...

ParkMemorialCondo.jpg

This is from the back entrance. In the background, you can see Memorial. Previously, these condos soared as high as 4 storeys, 3 floors of living area over a parking area. You couldn't see Memorial from here. My unit was that slab directly to the right of the excavator. Kinda sad to see my old home disappear.

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Actually, I sold in 2004, 3 years before the calamity. Interestingly, I had thought about selling the property while I was on the condo owners association board. It was not a serious thought, but the money spent repairing the property was steadily rising, and the thought occured to me that we could sell the whole property to recoup our investment in a surging real estate market. The person I sold my unit to also was on the board when that idea was brought up and voted on. Unfortunately, the timing was awful, as the recession hit soon after.

While I came out unscathed, I feel terrible for the person I sold to, as he is a friend of mine. He has recovered, but it stung for awhile. I'd love to here your friends' version of how the whole thing went down.

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I know that there was a thread that discussed the fate of the Park Memorial Condos on Memorial Drive at Detering, but I suppose it was a subtopic of another discussion. As many know, this complex made the rather rare decision to put all 108 units up for sale en masse. This apparently infuriated at least one resident, who retaliated by notifying the City of an engineers report that there were structural problems in the complex. The City responded by condemning the property based on the report, and ordered everyone out. The owners sued the City, and the court found that the City could not condemn a structure without getting their own reports.

The owners finally found a buyer who plans to raze the buildings and put up 372 apartments. The demolition began immediately, and is nearly complete already.

How is it even possible for the complex to put all the units up for sale? Was there something in their condo docs that specifically allowed that? That is not normally allowed is it?

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It was a concerted effort to get a super majority of 75% of the condo owners to vote to place the entire property for sale. As I understand it, the COA had never achieved a 75% quorum, which was required to amend the bylaws. They hunted down out of state owners and hounded the shy ones, until they achieved the required number to vote the sale. Apparently, a few of those in the minority contacted the City, which caused the inspection that led to the condemnation. Unfortunately, evicting all of the tenants crushed the bargaining power of the owners, as now many were put in financial straits. Looking at HCAD, you can tell many simply walked away from their mortgages. It is certainly not something you see every day.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Whoa! That is exactly the location of my photo. I may have been living over a dead body. Sorry, no bumps in the night to report. No cool drafts. No creepiness. Hope I didn't ruin anyone's haunted fantasies.

You sure picked an appropriately morbid title for this thread, though. And you lived kind of close to Washington Avenue.

Are you a zombie?

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The bones were located not exactly under my condo unit, but in fact, under my storage locker in the parking garage immediately adjacent to my unit. The Chronicle has a couple of photos and a description of the location of the bones. Basically, there were two buildings in the far northeast corner of the property, with a walkway between them. The body was under the slab next to the walkway.

http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/At-construction-site-forensic-team-searches-for-3758817.php#photo-3276534

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  • 1 year later...

http://www.houstonarchitecture.com/haif/topic/16434-camp-logan-cemetary/?hl=crooms#entry411819

 

...the link to the old thread. See post #16 for the history of the land, if interested. Similar controversy as Elder St. Lofts. Native American bones? never heard that one before. 

 

I think the sloping terrain posed a problem with that original construction. 

 

Nice interior courtyard design. But I would have incorporated those sloping ledges into some kind of water feature. I believe that spot was originally where water pooled after running down the sloped land, before entering the bayou. Maybe it is intended to be a rainfall runoff spot.

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If you check out Google maps here, there is actually a pretty cool panoramic from on top of the apartment complex at sunset.  Just drag the little google guy over the building and the little circle should appear for the street view.

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