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Post Oak Market: Mixed-Use Proposed for NW Mall (Potential High-Speed Rail) Site

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My question is why are they renovating the interior of the mall instead of tearing it completely down ? 

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Gotta admit, it was kind of neat and sad the last time when I went there (2013-ish). There was a fountain...there was a Chick-fil-a Express that had closed for the day...there was perhaps the last Sesame Hut in existence...there was a soccer-focused place (I think) that had action figures...nothing like "Wow, this place is a treasure that needs to be memorialized" but to be honest, I'm surprised it lasted this long. The loss of Macy's no doubt damaged its prospects, and the removal of most of its parking lot (making it a pain to get around even the parking lot, one of the sides of the old Macy's has just one lane open up for clearance) for construction made it even harder. Would be surprised if the Macy's WASN'T torn down by the end of the year.

 

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Also, when they say "renovating the interior" I'm thinking they'll probably turn it into an office building and/or outdoor facing tenants, they aren't saving Palais Royal and the other tenant they mentioned I believe is not quite flush with the interior either.

Edited by IronTiger
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On 3/4/2017 at 7:33 AM, IronTiger said:

Gotta admit, it was kind of neat and sad the last time when I went there (2013-ish). There was a fountain...there was a Chick-fil-a Express that had closed for the day...there was perhaps the last Sesame Hut in existence...there was a soccer-focused place (I think) that had action figures...nothing like "Wow, this place is a treasure that needs to be memorialized" but to be honest, I'm surprised it lasted this long. The loss of Macy's no doubt damaged its prospects, and the removal of most of its parking lot (making it a pain to get around even the parking lot, one of the sides of the old Macy's has just one lane open up for clearance) for construction made it even harder. Would be surprised if the Macy's WASN'T torn down by the end of the year.

 

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Also, when they say "renovating the interior" I'm thinking they'll probably turn it into an office building and/or outdoor facing tenants, they aren't saving Palais Royal and the other tenant they mentioned I believe is not quite flush with the interior either.

My guess is the "renovation" of the interior is simply to keep the building online for extended use until more deals are done with the property in the future or some master plan is drafted for this site. No way they will keep this aging relic standing for long or in whatever master plan they come up with. Would be cheaper to tear it down than to "restore" or "reconfigure" or whatever "re" one could come up with.

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Wait a minute. Are we all talking about the same run down out of date excuse for a retail center, in the middle of an industrial neighborhood surrounded by a wall of freeways, railroad tracks and every other physical barrier known to man to keep people away. Maybe we can get the state historical society and Ed Emmett together to save it for posterity along with the dome.

Better yet move the mall into the dome. Perfect. It could be like those chinese boxes. Open one and see whats inside. Then when you got to the bottom there would be a superfund site. 

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4 hours ago, Luminare said:

My guess is the "renovation" of the interior is simply to keep the building online for extended use until more deals are done with the property in the future or some master plan is drafted for this site. No way they will keep this aging relic standing for long or in whatever master plan they come up with. Would be cheaper to tear it down than to "restore" or "reconfigure" or whatever "re" one could come up with.

You are probably right.  Second-tier malls like this are a dying breed.  I don't know about potential for mixed use, but I could picture a large apartment complex on the site. 

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55 minutes ago, Timoric said:

I wonder if Amazon will take a look at one of these malls to have a place you can visit - brick and mortar to get stuff. If they can buy them cheap, why not do an experiment? Would people use it?

Amazon Drone Factory/Warehouse/Storage Facility/Home

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I envision a retail power center going in here with maybe an apartment building or two and about a dozen pad sites. Perhaps an office building or two if we get really lucky.  Maybe they could keep the mall structure for the big box retail stores for cheaper than tearing down and rebuilding?

 

I'd like to hope for something more "urban", but I'm not going to set my expectations too high for this one just yet.

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They could put it at end of the high speed rail line for padding in case the brakes fail

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Well IF the station is going to be built here, you can bet a developer is going to create some city centre environment for visitors. We should call it little dallass

Edited by j_cuevas713
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On 3/7/2017 at 7:46 PM, Sparrow said:

I envision a retail power center going in here with maybe an apartment building or two and about a dozen pad sites. Perhaps an office building or two if we get really lucky.  Maybe they could keep the mall structure for the big box retail stores for cheaper than tearing down and rebuilding?

 

I'd like to hope for something more "urban", but I'm not going to set my expectations too high for this one just yet.

Probably not even that, given it is hard to access and Palais Royal is going to be heading out. My guess is that it will become a modern industrial park, which would fit in with the antique mall (remember that it was a former industrial site nestled in industrial before becoming an antique mall...directories indicate it was originally a facility that manufactured fans). If not that, I can see more of an office building/hotel environment going in.

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This is a great topic.  A great spot for it, but cannot connect to buses. As they are building in San Francisco right next to the Saleforse Tower a large terminal with BART, MUNI, Heavy Rail and buses.  We are so far behind and the county and the city are just stupid. 

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2 hours ago, nativehoustonion said:

This is a great topic.  A great spot for it, but cannot connect to buses. As they are building in San Francisco right next to the Saleforse Tower a large terminal with BART, MUNI, Heavy Rail and buses.  We are so far behind and the county and the city are just stupid. 

That's not a new terminal, it's a replacement and redevelopment of an existing bus terminal, with an extension of the Caltrain line from 4th and King to the new terminal(unlikely to be completed until 2026, apparently), and a pedestrian connection to the existing BART Embarcadero station near Market and Pine. It's easy to build a terminal when most of the connections are nearby or already exist. The San Francisco project is nothing like the proposals for the NW Mall site. San Francisco also has far higher density, and far less empty space, so there is more impetus for transit projects, and they make more sense there.

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1 hour ago, Ross said:

San Francisco also has far higher density, and far less empty space, so there is more impetus for transit projects, and they make more sense there.

 

There's somewhat of a chicken/egg situation here. Lack of transit makes it impossible for Houston to get anywhere near San Francisco in terms of density, but, especially since we are continuing to grow in population, there's no reason for that to continue in perpetuity. This really does seem like a great, catalyzing spot to work on that: 

  • High speed rail connection to Dallas
  • Connect to Uptown BRT
  • Short term: express buses to downtown
  • Medium term: extend Green Line LRT to NW Transit along Washington
  • Long term: Extend high speed rail to downtown; add links to other cities
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As a person living in the Tanglewood area I like to think of a line up Washington either connecting and Shepherd and then going down 11th, or connecting at Hemptstead. But the light rail of my imagination goes all over the place. 

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21 hours ago, Ross said:

That's not a new terminal, it's a replacement and redevelopment of an existing bus terminal, with an extension of the Caltrain line from 4th and King to the new terminal(unlikely to be completed until 2026, apparently), and a pedestrian connection to the existing BART Embarcadero station near Market and Pine. It's easy to build a terminal when most of the connections are nearby or already exist. The San Francisco project is nothing like the proposals for the NW Mall site. San Francisco also has far higher density, and far less empty space, so there is more impetus for transit projects, and they make more sense there.

I'm referring to the future over 400,000 live inside the loop.  That will double in 15 t0 20 years have some sort plan now!

Edited by nativehoustonion
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How does this process work?  They don't own these properties.  Some of the warehouses along 610 in option 3 already got cut in half by the 610/290/10 work... and just rebuilt.

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Did they say how exactly they’re connecting this to Downtown? A 90 minute ride turns into a 120 minute ride if you have to hope on a bus or Uber to DT.  I’m just really bitter this doesn’t go directly DT.

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I live in on 18th Street, so I have a little dream about a LTR going up 18th to the center of the Heights. Maybe it would become a more urban satellite. Some of my neighbors might reject. 

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1 hour ago, nate4l1f3 said:

Did they say how exactly they’re connecting this to Downtown? A 90 minute ride turns into a 120 minute ride if you have to hope on a bus or Uber to DT.  I’m just really bitter this doesn’t go directly DT.

The link to Downtown is another billion or more dollars with very little benefit. There's also no real route to go to Downtown without having to impact a neighborhood. There oculd be a connector running down I-10, but it wouldn't be suitable for HSR given the number of turns required.

30 minutes ago, EllenOlenska said:

I live in on 18th Street, so I have a little dream about a LTR going up 18th to the center of the Heights. Maybe it would become a more urban satellite. Some of my neighbors might reject. 

 

There's not enough room on 18th for rail, especially from TC Jester East to the Heights. I don't think you could reasonably get a single line on it, and it would be a hazard for neighborhood children.

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2 hours ago, Montrose1100 said:

Connecting it to the NW transit center is certainly a start.

 

That appears to be the third option. But what's the purpose of the structure at 610 and Hempstead?

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6 hours ago, SkylineView said:

How does this process work?  They don't own these properties.  Some of the warehouses along 610 in option 3 already got cut in half by the 610/290/10 work... and just rebuilt.

 

I suspect that they will throw money at all 3, and see which one they can actually buy for the least amount of cash.

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