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torimask

Photos of Googie Gas Station Polk @Wayside

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Doing some research for the South Belt history blog, I was rifling through the AIA negatives at the Texas Room in the Julia Ideson building of HPL and couldn't pass up a chance to get a couple of prints of this Googie reminiscent filling station. One sleeve appears to be taken prior to the other. The older of the two, I believe, is the Fina shot, and the later one of the station as a Conoco from the opposing street. Just wanted to share. I shared them (through the magnifying glass) with Tim, the reference librarian who's been such a great help, and he said, "It looks like something just landed from outer space!" Granted, it's eerier on the negative with the whole sky black, but still a fun find. These were shoved in a file folder marked "Unidentified, Area 13" and the only marking on the negative sleeve says Wayside @Polk. If anyone has any additional information, perhaps when the saucers were finally dismantled, I'd love to know!

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Well the building is still there. As with multiple other locations in Houston it's now buying gold and silver.

 

Streetview of the building.

 

Oddly enough Google "Historic Imagery" shows the canopies only going missing in their 2008 images. The last time it was there for sure was in 2006. As for their construction the canopies where built sometime between 1966 and 1974.

 

Historic Aerials imagery showing the canopies.

 

While Googling info for this I did run across some Court Documents that included the address of the building which indetified it as being an active Connoco station on June 24, 1981

 

The court documents if you want to read them (kinda grisly a manager was shot during a robbery)

 

Anyways some ancillary info the buildings address is  333 S WAYSIDE DR HCAD reports that the current owner is C W INCOME ASSETS & INC who bought the property in 1/2/2000. The building is currently occupied by "Senor Check Cashing". The previous owner was WAYSIDE TIRE who bought the property in 1/2/1995. Wayside Tire appears to still be active although now located in Alief. HCAD reports that the service station was built in 1960 although I'm not sure as the maps contradict this. Checking out the oldest info on HCAD (2006) shows that at this point the building was still classified as a service station. It also notes that the two canopies are still there (under Extra Features). The Loanstar Title loans across from the former gas station shows on HCAD that it was previously a Subway although it looks like it was probably a KFC at some point. It was originally built in 1983 which gives a good time frame of when the third canopy and car wash where probably torn down.

 

Link to 2006 HCAD report.

 

Current Streetviews of locations shown in the pics:

 

Building to the right of the station in first image.

 

Former Dunkin' Donuts and sign It's now called Dunk Donuts

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The building that is to the right of the donut building is now Connie's.  At least part of it used to be a Taco Bell if I remember correctly, or some other sort of fast food with an outdoor patio of sorts in the front.  When Connie's went in, they remodeled and incorporated the fast food restaurant into their new build.

 

I used to regularly shop at the Kroger's that was in the now Family Thrift building (Polk and Wayside) but I didn't always notice the triangle.  I do remember that the gas station building has had many faces over the years and colors too. 

 

Yes, the canopies were there but honestly, I cannot say when they disappeared.

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I remember that building...  With canopies, from the late 60s/early 70s.  We used to drive past on the way to Sears.

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Thank you Space Ghost for digging up all the info. I did the street view to check in terms of the canopies (I like to call them saucers, though!) being gone, but that was as far as I'd gotten. Gracias!

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No problem and De nada!

 

If you haven't already, download Google Earth. Houston has some great historic imagery that you can't get when just looking at the web version.

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Thanks so much for posting those pictures.  I'm a huge fan of googie and it's nice to see local examples.  Fascinating how it looks now, like an example out of "How Buildings Learn".

 

 

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Tanks Tori for posting the pictures of the service stations. I am fascinated with old service stations and their locations. A special thanks to Ghost for the history of the buildings.

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I believe the last canopies were taken down around 2006-2007.  Seems like they showed up on the Swamplot Demo Report (or somebodys demo report i saw around that time).   If my memory is right, it was a Mobil station in the 90s.

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Tanks Tori for posting the pictures of the service stations. I am fascinated with old service stations and their locations. A special thanks to Ghost for the history of the buildings.

 

Then you definitely need to check out this link, "Field Guide to Texas Gas Stations". 

 

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot-info/library/pubs/bus/env/fieldguide_gas_stations_.pdf

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Then you definitely need to check out this link, "Field Guide to Texas Gas Stations". 

 

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot-info/library/pubs/bus/env/fieldguide_gas_stations_.pdf

 

Thanks for the link, I found it very interesting and informative. There used to be so many really nice old  stations in Houston when I was growing up and on into the 70's, then in the 80's they all seemed to disappear and were replaced with the convenience store type stations that we see now.

 

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Nice pics. There is so much from the time period captured in these b/w photos. For example, the price of gas, the white slacks, make and model of autos, dense, wooded look of roadside (Wayside, I'm guessing). I'm a huge fan of the 1950's-1960's rock or stone facades. I frequented that Dunkin Donuts as a kid. I vaguely remember the station. I'm sure that Googie style station caught my eye, every time I passed it. It's interesting how the round design of the canopies is repeated in the actual station. Reminds me of the motor hotels and import auto dealership (all recently demolished) on the Gulf Frwy,

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I have pictures dated 11/03/06 showing the station with two of the canopies still standing.  I'll post them when I get them up somewhere.   The building was painted white and had red trim and was Oasis Insurance.  The next time I saw them, probably at least 4 months later and maybe a year or more, the canopies were gone and the building was painted yellow.

 

When I first saw the station the stone on the back of the building was charcoal gray and I guessed it had been a Phillips 66 station in a previous life.  I found pictures online of several Phillips stations with flying saucer canopies including the St. Louis Phillips 66/Del Taco/Starbucks flying saucer, saved by preservationists.
 

Around the same time frame there was another station with the flying saucer canopies on I-10 @ Lockwood, southwest corner.  I only saw it twice and didn't have my camera with me either time.  The second time I saw it the canopies were on their sides.  It did not look like storm damage so I guessed the station was being razed but I haven't been back by there in a long time.  I didn't have a clue as to the brand but I guessed not one of the majors.  The station had been unused for years.

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