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What happened to downtown's major vacant buildings?

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The Melrose topic got me to wondering what was the fate of major buildings downtown that stood vacant for a substantial period of time?  Here's my quick list.  Please add others I might have missed.

 

Demolished

West Building

Ben Milam Hotel

Gibraltar Savings Building

San Jacinto Building

Savoy Apartments

Sheraton-Lincoln

Sterling Building/Texas Tower

William Penn Hotel

 

Renovated

Humble Building

Old Shell building

Rice Hotel

Savoy Hotel

Texas State Hotel

Whitehall Hotel

World Trade Center

 

Still Vacant

Battlesteins

Holiday Inn

Melrose Building

Americana Building

 

Parking Garage

Sakowitz

 

 

So overall our preservation efforts haven't been as dire as most would suppose, although I would have greatly loved to have seen the Sheraton-Liincoln saved. 

 

 

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I get so sad when I see older buildings go. If you look closely at the Melrose building, I think this has alot of potential. Think BLVD place's lines, simplicity, modernity, etc. Renovate that building and put some cool lights on it, and it becomes a great condo tower or even offices (if they are needed).

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According to HCAD, the Melrose building is owned by "GULF APARTMENT INVESTORS LP", so maybe there's some hope that it could be turned into residences.

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I get so sad when I see older buildings go. If you look closely at the Melrose building, I think this has alot of potential. Think BLVD place's lines, simplicity, modernity, etc. Renovate that building and put some cool lights on it, and it becomes a great condo tower or even offices (if they are needed).

I agree. It is definitely a "modern" building design from back in the 50's. Quite cool looking. Is the parking garage behind it part of the same building or is that a different land owner?

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Is Herman Lloyd the same architect that desinged the Medical Towers building on Fannin in the Medical Center? The buildings look very similar and are from the same period.

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Is Herman Lloyd the same architect that desinged the Medical Towers building on Fannin in the Medical Center? The buildings look very similar and are from the same period.

 

Medical Towers was by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.  Lloyd did also design the American Building downtown (which also uses the integral shading on the south facade).  

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When was the Melrose building last occupied?

 

There are also a couple of telephone system switching buildings that are freaking huge and dead (from a human perspective), but they serve a purpose for the time being. I wonder though how long all that will be necessary to occupy space on land that could be increasing markedly in value with new technology taking over for land line telephones. 

 

 

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The reuse of a Sakowitz department store as a parking garage is very strange--it still looks cool on the outside (must have been built incredibly strong), and while some pictures still have the original tile intact, it doesn't seem to look nearly as depressing as say, that theater in Detroit that became a parking garage.

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The reuse of a Sakowitz department store as a parking garage is very strange--it still looks cool on the outside (must have been built incredibly strong), and while some pictures still have the original tile intact, it doesn't seem to look nearly as depressing as say, that theater in Detroit that became a parking garage.

I saw that Detroit pic. Very sad, indeed. The city is full of depressing visuals, in the form of abandonment. What a waste.

At least the Sakowitz bldg. is still standing.

Edited by NenaE

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