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Retail District Planned, to be Centered Around Dallas St.

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1 hour ago, cspwal said:

I agree the biggest problem with making this street a "retail corridor" is the lack of anything at street level in so many of those parking garages.  Maybe food trucks could park there on the sidewalk?

Yea the back of the Four Seasons and those parking garages on the north side of Dallas Street are blank walls and aren't helping this retail district at all. I'm loving the wider sidewalks and street lights though. It'll pick up momentum now that the construction is nearing completion and when Alessandra opens. 

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graphics-wow-123376.gif

^^^ holy cow!  now this is what i have been waiting to see.  what a GORGEOUS and well-lit corridor.

well done nate99!

 

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Some more pictures of Dallas street, this time during the day

http://swamplot.com/dallas-st-redo-winds-down-before-final-four-clocks-start-running/2016-03-31/

Quote

 The new trees seem to line up with the spacing plans shown in the previously released project plans, which included knocking out a driving lane on the north side and turning it into parking (as the vehicles above are politely demonstrating).

dallas-street-complete-2.jpg

dallas-st-complete-1.jpg

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wtf... the neon is off..... just another thing to check on my mile long list of shit to do tomorrow.... LOL

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So still no word on any potential tenants in the retail corridor?  

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when I spoke to the manager at forever 21 a couple weeks ago he heard they were trying to land free people the popular hippie chain. Not sure whatever happened but thats the type of store downtown needs. If we were to get free people/urban outfitters/sephora/h&m we would be solid

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8 hours ago, Elseed said:

So still no word on any potential tenants in the retail corridor?  

More importantly, where would the retail go? Besides Forever 21, the rest of the Green Street development on the Dallas side is a hotel currently under construction, 3 restaurants and the House of Blues. The Sakowitz building is still a parking garage,and the other remaining structures along this route are parking garages. I'm hoping the corner of the corner of 1111 Travis will have a retail component. But other than that they would have to build something new. 

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1 minute ago, Sunstar said:

More importantly, where would the retail go? Besides Forever 21, the rest of the Green Street development on the Dallas side is a hotel currently under construction, 3 restaurants and the House of Blues. The Sakowitz building is still a parking garage,and the other remaining structures along this route are parking garages. I'm hoping the corner of the corner of 1111 Travis will have a retail component. But other than that they would have to build something new. 

I wonder when they plan the Four Season's remodel? Maybe they could include a new street front?

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1 hour ago, Sunstar said:

More importantly, where would the retail go? Besides Forever 21, the rest of the Green Street development on the Dallas side is a hotel currently under construction, 3 restaurants and the House of Blues. The Sakowitz building is still a parking garage,and the other remaining structures along this route are parking garages. I'm hoping the corner of the corner of 1111 Travis will have a retail component. But other than that they would have to build something new. 

 

I believe the original plan was to redevelop the sakowitz building and part of another building into street level retail? Which I think could work. However, after the city announced that they've narrowed the the list of developers to work on this project no one has really heard anything from the city.

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3 hours ago, Sunstar said:

More importantly, where would the retail go? Besides Forever 21, the rest of the Green Street development on the Dallas side is a hotel currently under construction, 3 restaurants and the House of Blues. The Sakowitz building is still a parking garage,and the other remaining structures along this route are parking garages. I'm hoping the corner of the corner of 1111 Travis will have a retail component. But other than that they would have to build something new. 

 

1111 Fannin looks like it could possibly have retail space at street level on the Dallas side, but I'm not sure if that is practical. Sakowitz re-conversion was always key to this plan, but I'll believe that when I see it.

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1111 Main for sure has room for decent sized retail on the ground floor.

 

Summary - Main and Dallas has potential, but will require a big anchor in Sakowitz and good tennants in Hillcorp and the old books a million spot.  There's also some opportunity because of empty lots at the east end of Dallas.  A lot of Dallas is loading docks and blank walls.

 

Going down dallas from east to west in street view, here are my notes:

There are still empty lots closer to the east end of dallas where a new shopping center could be constructed

I don't really see how 4 seasons could turn their loading dock into any sort of retail.  It looks like there might be one open spot next to Ben's beans, and of course whatever the Marlowe will bring.  Green street really treats dallas as the loading dock, at least for the house of blues section.

The parking garage between Caroline and San Jacinto looks very unfriendly to GFR - they'd have to do extensive remodeling to the building to add any retail.

Like Nate99 said, 1111 Fannin looks like it might be able to host some retail.  Green street is just so inward facing for this whole street.  Only where the last block with Hotel Alessandra and Forever 21 does it face Dallas.

The old Sakowitz building really is a big key for this - its the biggest preexisting opportunity, and there's the most potential ground level activity at Dallas and main.

The Humble building has the Starbucks in it, and some more spots.

I doubt the Police HQ building will have GFR anytime soon.  There is some GFR across from it though, and the McDonald's in the garage.  Total Plaza and CentrePoint don't look like good candidates, but they're big towers that they could add a spot in if they wanted to in a lobby remodel.

Even the Hyatt Regency has a blank wall on Dallas - there's a big canopy entrance on Louisiana, but Dallas is a brick wall.  Enterprise plaza (the pink building? forgot the name) has an entrance ramp to underground parking, so I doubt there's much opportunity there.

The rest of Dallas is much the same - sporadic GFR spots, loading docks, and the entrance drive for Double Tree.

 

 

 

 

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41 minutes ago, cspwal said:

1111 Main for sure has room for decent sized retail on the ground floor.

 

Summary - Main and Dallas has potential, but will require a big anchor in Sakowitz and good tennants in Hillcorp and the old books a million spot.  There's also some opportunity because of empty lots at the east end of Dallas.  A lot of Dallas is loading docks and blank walls.

 

Going down dallas from east to west in street view, here are my notes:

There are still empty lots closer to the east end of dallas where a new shopping center could be constructed

I don't really see how 4 seasons could turn their loading dock into any sort of retail.  It looks like there might be one open spot next to Ben's beans, and of course whatever the Marlowe will bring.  Green street really treats dallas as the loading dock, at least for the house of blues section.

The parking garage between Caroline and San Jacinto looks very unfriendly to GFR - they'd have to do extensive remodeling to the building to add any retail.

Like Nate99 said, 1111 Fannin looks like it might be able to host some retail.  Green street is just so inward facing for this whole street.  Only where the last block with Hotel Alessandra and Forever 21 does it face Dallas.

The old Sakowitz building really is a big key for this - its the biggest preexisting opportunity, and there's the most potential ground level activity at Dallas and main.

The Humble building has the Starbucks in it, and some more spots.

I doubt the Police HQ building will have GFR anytime soon.  There is some GFR across from it though, and the McDonald's in the garage.  Total Plaza and CentrePoint don't look like good candidates, but they're big towers that they could add a spot in if they wanted to in a lobby remodel.

Even the Hyatt Regency has a blank wall on Dallas - there's a big canopy entrance on Louisiana, but Dallas is a brick wall.  Enterprise plaza (the pink building? forgot the name) has an entrance ramp to underground parking, so I doubt there's much opportunity there.

The rest of Dallas is much the same - sporadic GFR spots, loading docks, and the entrance drive for Double Tree.

 

 

 

 

 

I think you exaggerate the difficulty of converting at least part of the first levels of the two parking garages to active street-fronting retail, and also greatly exaggerate the amount of GreenStreet devoted to loading docks.

 

FWIW, I believe the Dallas Street retail corridor plan only runs from Milam to Avenida de las Americas, with the focus being very much on the portion fronting Main, continuing east to Avenida de las Americas.

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I think the Centerpoint offices take up too much potential space IMO. That space would be awesome for retail but is being wasted as office that could be anywhere in downtown. 

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1 minute ago, BigFootsSocks said:

There's always so much empty space in those offices too...

Anyone have any idea how long their lease is?

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1 hour ago, astros148 said:

I think the Centerpoint offices take up too much potential space IMO. That space would be awesome for retail but is being wasted as office that could be anywhere in downtown. 

What if the city tried to get them to move floors and give up the ground floor...it be more asking than  trying to force I mean..of course some type of incentive  would probably have to be involved. .

 

Another thing that I was thinking about was those mobile trunks,  like the ones that come downtown from time to time...at least in the interim to get people use to thinking it as a retail area

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7 hours ago, Elseed said:

 

I believe the original plan was to redevelop the sakowitz building and part of another building into street level retail? Which I think could work. However, after the city announced that they've narrowed the the list of developers to work on this project no one has really heard anything from the city.

 

I think the other building in question is 1010 Lamar, behind the Sakowitz building. I haven't heard any updates on that redevelopment. 

As far as the inward facing restaurants along the Green Street Development, perhaps they could treat the Dallas side as a patio area for outdoor dining. They could place tables and a hostess stand on the sidewalk and install awnings. It's not retail, per se, but it would help create a more inviting environment for patrons.

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1 hour ago, Sunstar said:

 

I think the other building in question is 1010 Lamar, behind the Sakowitz building. I haven't heard any updates on that redevelopment. 

As far as the inward facing restaurants along the Green Street Development, perhaps they could treat the Dallas side as a patio area for outdoor dining. They could place tables and a hostess stand on the sidewalk and install awnings. It's not retail, per se, but it would help create a more inviting environment for patrons.

 

This. 

 

Atleast 3 restaurants (McCormmicks, III Forks, & Guadalajara) could use the wider sidewalks for patio space. House of Blues' Crossroads Cafe could be a 4th. And then you'll have Hotel Alessandra's front door on Dallas as well. And across the street from HOB, you have 101 Reserve, Ben's Beans, and Dirt Bar, with Marlowe possibly coming soon. 

 

The potential for activity on/near Dallas is there and I believe now that construction is complete, we'll see changes outward as we get closer to Hotel Alessandra's opening. 

Edited by tigereye
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8 hours ago, Moore713 said:

What if the city tried to get them to move floors and give up the ground floor...it be more asking than  trying to force I mean..of course some type of incentive  would probably have to be involved. .

 

Another thing that I was thinking about was those mobile trunks,  like the ones that come downtown from time to time...at least in the interim to get people use to thinking it as a retail area


I was thinking that too when I read the part about empty space. Just move them up and renovate the ground floor for retail.

Im not sure what kind of mobile trucks you're referring to (retail?), but maybe they could use the HOB loading dock when there isn't an event going on there?

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I wonder if the city could sponsor a street fair with booths of people selling things, similar to what goes on at mid-main on first thursdays

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7 hours ago, cloud713 said:


I was thinking that too when I read the part about empty space. Just move them up and renovate the ground floor for retail.

Im not sure what kind of mobile trucks you're referring to (retail?), but maybe they could use the HOB loading dock when there is

http://m.chron.com/neighborhood/memorial/news/article/Fashion-trucks-The-next-big-thing-4993536.php#photo-5484282

Edited by Moore713
Correction
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Half of my urban dream has come true now that I work downtown (the other is to live there).  So now I walk across Dallas on the far east side twice a day and love to look down and see these improvements. The construction and light poles make the street feel open and welcoming. The trees they chose to line the street with fit well, too. I'm happy they didn't go with oaks.

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Maybe this has been mentioned but ben's beans is closing 7/31. 

 

Im having trouble uploading pics. I get the message about only being able to attach up to 2.6mb. Any advice?

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Saw this story on the Chron website. In one of the slides it mentioned American Apparel getting some space in the old Sakowitz building.

 

http://www.chron.com/local/history/economy-business/article/Local-businesses-changed-the-face-of-American-8462170.php#photo-10664956

 

Slide 23/45

 

" The old Sakowitz building will have as much as 25,000 square feet of retail space on its ground floor, with 4,300 set aside for American Apparel. "

 

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27 minutes ago, Elseed said:

Saw this story on the Chron website. In one of the slides it mentioned American Apparel getting some space in the old Sakowitz building.

 

http://www.chron.com/local/history/economy-business/article/Local-businesses-changed-the-face-of-American-8462170.php#photo-10664956

 

Slide 23/45

 

" The old Sakowitz building will have as much as 25,000 square feet of retail space on its ground floor, with 4,300 set aside for American Apparel. "

 

Great catch.. 

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1 hour ago, Elseed said:

Saw this story on the Chron website. In one of the slides it mentioned American Apparel getting some space in the old Sakowitz building.

 

http://www.chron.com/local/history/economy-business/article/Local-businesses-changed-the-face-of-American-8462170.php#photo-10664956

 

Slide 23/45

 

" The old Sakowitz building will have as much as 25,000 square feet of retail space on its ground floor, with 4,300 set aside for American Apparel. "

 

 

That slide was dated April 20, 2005. (Because it's much easier to throw up a slide show of old file photos than to discover and report on any actual news.)  The plans have changed a couple times since then and I think it's safe to say American Apparel will not be opening a store in downtown Houston.

Edited by Houston19514
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I think AP was supposed to have their initial store in that building,  but that didn't happen and the Montrose location was chosen instead.

 

There was an AP poster up for a while.

I used to frequent American Apparel a lot. Wish the store had materialized in Downtown as that would have been a more convenient location for me.

 

 

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40 minutes ago, samagon said:

didn't American Apparel just finish being bankrupt?

 

They filed for Chapter 11 in October of last year and exited as a private company in February.

 

Not sure who is in charge these days, they don't have to disclose as much publically anymore

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1 hour ago, HoustonIsHome said:

Has anyone else notices the new street lights going up along Dallas?

^^^ @HoustonIsHome are they different than the new ones that they have just place on dallas a few months ago right before the NCAA finals?  have any pics?  would love to see these.... 

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Those were installed sometime back in the spring. Between the trees and the streetlights, this corridor is starting to create its own identity..

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This work is done.  The entire reason FOR spending these MILLIONS of dollars was to bring drygoods retail to the Dallas corridor.  Nothing yet.

 

in six months, without signed agreements and announcements, they will have failed?

 

And downtown will remain a dry goods wasteland?  

 

 

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On 4/21/2017 at 7:48 PM, UtterlyUrban said:

This work is done.  The entire reason FOR spending these MILLIONS of dollars was to bring drygoods retail to the Dallas corridor.  Nothing yet.

 

in six months, without signed agreements and announcements, they will have failed?

 

And downtown will remain a dry goods wasteland?  

 

 

What do you mean by "dry goods"?

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44 minutes ago, Subdude said:

What do you mean by "dry goods"?

 

Basically clothing etc. retail that doesn't have to do with food or hardware.

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1 hour ago, Subdude said:

What do you mean by "dry goods"?

 

31 minutes ago, TowermaniacXD said:

 

Basically clothing etc. retail that doesn't have to do with food or hardware.

 

Such as:

 

Foley's 1917 Store.   HOUCHRON CAPTION  (03/28/2002):  Foley Bros. Dry Goods Co. was a major department store in 1917. Photo: Bob Bailey / handout CD

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On 9/2/2016 at 3:15 PM, HoustonIsHome said:

Might be the same ones and I just didn't notice them until now.  They are sorta curved. 

 

https://www.downtownhouston.org/development/project/dallas-street-improvements/

 

Thanks for the definition.  I notice that at the link it is just referred to as a Dallas Street improvement to create a "pedestrian-friendly experience".  Not a word about retail.  Perhaps they gave up on the idea.

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On 4/21/2017 at 7:48 PM, UtterlyUrban said:

This work is done.  The entire reason FOR spending these MILLIONS of dollars was to bring drygoods retail to the Dallas corridor.  Nothing yet.

 

in six months, without signed agreements and announcements, they will have failed?

 

And downtown will remain a dry goods wasteland?  

 

 

 

Hilcorp's retail spaces are still empty. And if the Sakowitz is redeveloped, that could change things. 

 

I just wish with the wider sidewalks, some of GreenStreet's restaurants could setup sidewalk seating to bring some more activity to the street. 

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For those that don't remember, here is the document that lead to the creation of the "retail district" and the spending of millions of dollars of tax money to make the needed improvements:

 

https://www.downtownhouston.org/site_media/uploads/attachments/2013-09-12/Downtown_Retail_Task_Force_Report_Sept_12_2013_ONLINE.pdf

 

it is a good plan and I supported it (and still do).  

 

But I am a addened and increasingly concerned that all of these dollars may have been wasted - the vision has yet to be realized.  I assumed that when construction started a couple years ago, that folks were already trying to line up tenants. Now, years later, not a single announcement.  The Sakowitz building will take time to convert back to retail --  Maybe a year? --- even if they find a tenant.

 

Before the Dallas dollars were spent, we were years away from the possibility of a retail district.  Are we still years away even after spending the money?

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Downtown just isn't a place people want to walk long distances in the evenings right now. Maybe when the apartments are done being built and people actually lease them, there will be more of a critical mass of people on the streets and so people will feel safe walking longer distances.

 

If the choice is walking from Market Square Tower to this area, or getting in the car and driving there, or driving somewhere else. I'm probably going to just drive somewhere else. That will change in time not only as residents get more comfortable with their surroundings, but as more people lease the apartments and there are more people.

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The original plan for a retail district was from 2013.  Since then it has become a lot more apparent that the retail sector as it used to be is going to undergo a lot more shrinkage.  Too many people just have too many things delivered to their homes.  If anything, I wonder if Houston isn't already over-retailed, especially in the luxury sector with Galleria expansion, River Oaks District, Kirby Collection, Rice Village re-do etc.  Trying to build a retail district from scratch is going to be next-to-impossible when there is less and less demand for stores.

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4 hours ago, Subdude said:

The original plan for a retail district was from 2013.  Since then it has become a lot more apparent that the retail sector as it used to be is going to undergo a lot more shrinkage.  Too many people just have too many things delivered to their homes.  If anything, I wonder if Houston isn't already over-retailed, especially in the luxury sector with Galleria expansion, River Oaks District, Kirby Collection, Rice Village re-do etc.  Trying to build a retail district from scratch is going to be next-to-impossible when there is less and less demand for stores.

I tend to agree with you.  

 

Said another way, all that money spent on Dallas to do all that work will not accomplish the 2013 vison?  And, by extension was "wasted" (in the sense that those dollars could have been used for something that had real impact)?

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2 things that make it not a complete waste...

 

Considering how close this is to the convention hotels, it could start populating with restaurants that couldn't get into the convention areas limited space. The lighting for walking is really good compared to other areas, and as such more inviting to pedestrians in the evenings. It goes straight into Hilton and Embarrassingly ugly building Suites. It's a nice night, you're here with a convention and you ask the concierge if there's a place to go that won't have so many people packed in from the convention. So you walk 6 or 8 blocks to get to a nice restaurant. I'd be shocked if people don't already do this for the stuff in green streets anyway.

 

The city can use this as a model for the rest of downtown, at least for lighting. I know main street down around Texas has the hanging outdoor patio lights that help create an inviting feel, but the rest of downtown is very nicely underlit for pedestrians, there's a lot of dark recessed corners, put more light on the street level, specifically in the pedestrian space and it will feel safer for pedestrians. Dallas is very well lit now, and it's something they need to repeat for the rest of downtown.

Edited by samagon
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Patience! I can remember not too long ago, which is a feat in itself, how everyone was clamoring about the wasted money for the Main Street rail.

They said it would never lead to development and the money should have been used in a way that would actually do some good.

The last time I rode the rail to downtown, it seems there were very few empty lots and over a billion dollars of construction development and improvements made for the general public. It took less than 20 years for there to be three major high rises built and two of them are on the east side of Main street. Several new hotels opened on Main and probably close to 10,000 apartment units built directly on Main. There are now 3 major projects projected for Main street and more perhaps to come.So just relax and be patient. Now that the infrastructure is in and the hotel and high rise is getting built it will happen. It just doesn't happen overnight.

One day you'll be walking down Dallas Street, looking in shop windows or dining in one of the restaurants and stop and say, "wow where did all of this come from?" It always seems to have a more lasting effect if it happens at a natural pace instead of just being rolled out in a cookie cutter fashion.

It will come!

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All you have to do is listen to all of the national retailers that are filing or closing multiple stores and wonder if there will even be a retail sector in 20 years. This is a growing problem for retailers and I don't know what will be the outcome but Amazon and other online outlets have really taken a lion share of the growth in retail shopping and that should have retail as a whole up in arms as to what is the right direction for future growth in this industry. I do think that the right type of retail and service will always find a market. We need more boots on the ground (Dallas street).

Something else that will help this is the convention center Toyota center and the hotels because those are bodies that will be trekking both ways across town on Dallas and will help generate body counts and help define the market.

Edited by bobruss

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