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Heights Central Station - Mixed-Use Development of Yale St Post Office

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http://swamplot.com/this-could-be-the-end-of-the-heights-post-office/2014-09-18/

 

I have seen some old folks at this location using the post office boxes.  I assume that they are walking over from the nearby senior apartments.  It would be an inconvenience for them.  But that is the only reason I could think of to advocate for keeping it.  It is the worst post office in the world and a blight on Heights Blvd.  And it would be a great redevelopment opportunity with the new little retail strip on the northwest side of the intersection and the available old gas station across Yale St.

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The alternative PO has many disadvantages in its current state.

 

 

I would have to assume that they intend to upgrade the 18th St. facility in Shady Acres if they intend to consolidate retail services from the Yale St. location.  They will make good money selling the property on Yale St. and can make upgrades to 18th and still have money in the bank afterwards.

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Hopefully they'd also dole a little of that fundage towards the Anson Jones station on Cavalcade. Very small station that serves Monte Beach, The Heights, Norhill, etc. It, too, needs some upgraded facilities.

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So, there was a meeting yesterday with the rep from the USPS and community members.  The 19th st. post office has excess space and is currently underutilized.  It sounds like they would build out retail space there if they close Yale St.  USPS said they will make the consolidation unless it can be shown that the move would not save money or would be more costly than the status quo.  It does not sound like the USPS is going to be at all receptive to complaints about convenience due to their dire economic situation.  Given that the sale of the property would probably generate about 10x the funds needed to build out a retail counter and PO boxes at the 19th street center, it sounds like this is probably a done deal.

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http://swamplot.com/this-could-be-the-end-of-the-heights-post-office/2014-09-18/

 

I have seen some old folks at this location using the post office boxes.  I assume that they are walking over from the nearby senior apartments.  It would be an inconvenience for them.  But that is the only reason I could think of to advocate for keeping it.  It is the worst post office in the world and a blight on Heights Blvd.  And it would be a great redevelopment opportunity with the new little retail strip on the northwest side of the intersection and the available old gas station across Yale St.

 

Really, tear it down and put in retail space?  This is in the heart of residential properties.  You pissed and moaned about WalMart and it was a vacant field and had no impact on residential properties.

Edited by Heights20plusyears

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Really, tear it down and put in retail space?  This is in the heart of residential properties.  You pissed and moaned about WalMart and it was a vacant field and had no impact on residential properties.

 

 

Walmart is >150k s.f. under roof.  The entire USPS property is less than 50k s.f.

 

All four corners of Yale & 11th are non-residential, as are most of 11th from Durham to Studewood and much of Yale from I-10 to 610. This is a more appropriate site for retail than it would be for residential.  I'm not sure I'd want to buy a single family house on that corner.

 

It's not zoned either way, so whoever buys it can decide what to do with it, but I'd guess that "highest-and-best use" (as economists say) would be either multi-family or some sort of retail or commercial use.

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Really, tear it down and put in retail space?  This is in the heart of residential properties.  You pissed and moaned about WalMart and it was a vacant field and had no impact on residential properties.

 

The issue with Walmart wasn't whether it was retail or not.  That is such a grotesque oversimplification of that debate that it is pretty much impossible to respond to the attempted argument.

 

Retail at that spot would be ideal.  As previously noted, this is at one of the busiest intersections in the Heights.  Across 11th st. is the strip center with Lola and an additional 3,000 sq ft of retail is currently under construction on the NW corner of Heights and 11th.  On the other side of Yale St. is a gas station (closed and on the market) and a dry cleaner.  There is a chiro office on the SE corner of Heights and 11th with Boulevard Coffee a few doors down on Heights (at least for the next few days). 

 

That intersection is busy both with vehicles and pedestrian traffic and is pretty much the mid point of the Heights, meaning that it is close to a lot of residents.  A casual restaurant could do a good business from breakfast to dinner at that location, especially considering that there will be an additional 700 new units of apartments a few blocks down the street.  What we do not need is another Shady Acres-esque town home cluster or a Fisherville mid-rise. 

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Retail at that spot would be ideal.  As previously noted, this is at one of the busiest intersections in the Heights.  Across 11th st. is the strip center with Lola and an additional 3,000 sq ft of retail is currently under construction on the NW corner of Heights and 11th.  On the other side of Yale St. is a gas station (closed and on the market) and a dry cleaner.  There is a chiro office on the SE corner of Heights and 11th with Boulevard Coffee a few doors down on Heights (at least for the next few days). 

 

That intersection is busy both with vehicles and pedestrian traffic and is pretty much the mid point of the Heights, meaning that it is close to a lot of residents.  A casual restaurant could do a good business from breakfast to dinner at that location, especially considering that there will be an additional 700 new units of apartments a few blocks down the street.  What we do not need is another Shady Acres-esque town home cluster or a Fisherville mid-rise. 

 

As you stated, "this is one of the busiest intersections in The Heights" which is exactly why I am opposed to more retail.  They already took away 1 lane in each direction on Heights Blvd. for bicyclists that refuse to obey traffic laws.

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As you stated, "this is one of the busiest intersections in The Heights" which is exactly why I am opposed to more retail.  They already took away 1 lane in each direction on Heights Blvd. for bicyclists that refuse to obey traffic laws.

 

So, you are concerned about traffic impacts.  Fair enough.  But where were you when everyone was protesting Walmart?

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So, you are concerned about traffic impacts.  Fair enough.  But where were you when everyone was protesting Walmart?

Everyone? Overstate much?

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Supporting it 100%.

 

Never mind.  I did not expect you to get the irony that you are against retail in one place due to potential traffic impact but are 100% for it in another place with no regard for traffic impact.

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Another retail spot would be better than those ugly condo/townhomes that are going up on Yale. This intersection hasnt always been this busy but it has always been a !!!!! to cross. Ive seen many accidents and near accidents here. Unfortunatly, with the recent growth in HH, Im afraid most intersections off Yale will be just as bad. We have a lot of folks that cut thru our neighborhood to get to 610.

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Never mind.  I did not expect you to get the irony that you are against retail in one place due to potential traffic impact but are 100% for it in another place with no regard for traffic impact.

The only thing the Walmart site and the Post Office site have in common is proximity. Otherwise it is apples and oranges. 

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The only thing the Walmart site and the Post Office site have in common is proximity. Otherwise it is apples and oranges. 

 

Exactly.  That is why it is so silly for Heightsplus20 to call me out for opposing one but supporting the other.  Thanks for driving my point home.

 

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Exactly.  That is why it is so silly for Heightsplus20 to call me out for opposing one but supporting the other.  Thanks for driving my point home.

 

 

WalMart was built where there was NO, and I mean absolutely NO residential or traffic impact.  It was a frigging ABANDONED business that had been there for years and traffic was never an issue until the bicycle lane was put in on Heights Blvd. that supposedly had a traffic impact study completed which stated there would be no impact.

 

Many traffic IMPROVEMENTS were made due to WalMart.  One major improvement is that there is now an exit to Yale and Heights from I10 East.  There is no need to go all the way to Studewood.

 

Sorry for the caps and bolding, but you seem to have issues with comprehending what people say if you are not in agreement.

Edited by Heights20plusyears

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Exactly.  That is why it is so silly for Heightsplus20 to call me out for opposing one but supporting the other.  Thanks for driving my point home.

 

I didn't see where Heightsplus20 did that. Must have missed something.

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HAHA!  Everything that now exists that did not exist before the Walmart was built is caused by the Walmart being built.  Who knew?

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The exit was built as a result of the gvt wanting "shovel-ready" projects to help the economy.  If the exit had not been built, neither would the Walmart. 

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U.S.P.S should sell this property and maximaize every dollar they can for it. Being there is no zoning at all in Houston, the buyer can put up any type of building they want, residential or commercial, even an Ashby highrise if they so choose (being this site is not near Southampton, or Broadacres, snark snark!).

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I see someone mentioned in the comments that the Anson Jones post office on Cavalcade is also scheduled for closure. I was just there last week and asked the window clerk about it after noticing a new commercial real estate sign had been put up. She said they were going to be "moving", but hadn't been told where. If that translates to "consolidating operations with an existing facility", then postal services are really going to suck if the closest remaining post office in the area is the facility on 18th. 

Edited by mkultra25

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The post office on 18th is pretty close to the geographical center of the 77008 zip code.

 

If you live pretty much anywhere in the Heights and have your mail held, you'll need to go to W 18th to pick it up.

 

There are over 50 places to buy stamps and 44 collection boxes within 5 miles of the center of 77008. You can buy stamps or print postage online and arrange for package pick-up at your house. There are plenty of ways for Heights residents to interact with the United States Postal Service that don't require USPS to sit on $2.5M worth of valuable, underutilized land.

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Heights Post Office to close December 30th, per the attached letter that was placed in PO Boxes there. I figured the formal announcement was coming soon when I was there earlier this week and noticed fresh surveyors' marks painted in multiple spots on the property.

 

 

USPSHeights.pdf

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A BRAND NEW multi-building mixed-use development is planned for the site of the former Heights Finance Station post office, which shut down at the end of last year afterbeing declared “no longer necessary” by USPS.  The land on 11th St. between Heights Blvd. and Yale St. will move on, change its name to a less-stodgy Heights Central Station,and start a new life as the site of multiple 2-story lowrises housing ground-floor retail and restaurants with office spaces on top.

 

http://swamplot.com/jilted-heights-post-office-spot-to-move-on-as-a-new-mixed-use-lowrise-complex/2016-02-12/

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A Houston developer plans to replace a shuttered U.S. Post Office building in the Heights with a two-story mixed-use development with space for office, shops and restaurants.
 
The full-acre property was scooped up by MFT Interests last month and the development company is in the planning stages of bringing a low-rise project dubbed Heights Central Station to the corner of Yale and 11th streets, said Glenn Clements, the development group's chief financial officer.
 
The existing 1970s-era structure will be demolished. The project will include a pair of two-story buildings with office space on the upper floors and retail on the ground. The developers hope to attract professionals and fitness studios in the office space and perhaps two restaurants and up to eight shops at ground level.
 
Clements said MFT wants the project to have a "retro feeling" to it."We're building it in 2016 but it will look like 1916," he said. Construction is slated to begin later this year and they hope to have the shell of the buildings completed by mid-2017.

 

 
1024x1024.jpg
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http://www.chron.com/neighborhood/heights/business/article/Mural-to-be-part-of-Heights-mixed-use-project-6870298.php#photo-9407543

 

A mural by a local art teacher and her students will be part of the redevelopment of a former U.S. Post Office  that is being converted into a mixed-use project in the Heights.

 

MFT Interests, the Houston developer that purchased the former post office at 1050 Yale, said local art teacher at Hogg Elementary Kati Ozanic-Lemberger and her students will paint a mural on the Heights building that will be viewable from Heights Boulevard. The students will paint the mural next week.

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Geez, Chron, it's Hogg Middle School, not elementary. Does no one do any fact checking?

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A large mural by @wileyart, @ackzilla, and @annaveewins has already been painted on the Yale-facing side of the building - can't find a single pic of the entire width, but here are a couple of Instagram posts of the left and right sections:

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCMD7FKkKvL/

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCWVW0Ol3OK/

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www.heightscs.com

Just a placeholder website at this point.  Can't wait to see the renderings.  

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Yuck.  Seems like they are pandering in a big way to Starbucks with the coffee shop drive through design.  Otherwise, it is just a terribly dull strip mall.

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If only they could flip the parking lot and the building...

 

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36 minutes ago, s3mh said:

Yuck.  Seems like they are pandering in a big way to Starbucks with the coffee shop drive through design.  Otherwise, it is just a terribly dull strip mall.

or any coffee shop that wants to print money.

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Not shown in the rendering: the two rows of parked cars in front. Another development ruined by parking minimums and setbacks.

 

Also, what are those people on the roof cheering about?

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36 minutes ago, cspwal said:

If only they could flip the parking lot and the building...

 

 

Or build it like this, with vertical parking in the back, street facing retail in the front.

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22 hours ago, Triton said:

Wow, guess I'm in the minority. I really like it.

 

It's no worse than what's across the street, but it'd be nice to have something more street-facing.

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Nextdoor crowd really likes it too. The developer spoke a lot about it...

 

Quote

wow, they're rough over there on swamplot, lol. we first looked at doing an "urban style" development using a chapter 42 exception, up on 11th street. tenants have trouble getting their heads around that kind of design with 2 storefronts, and it makes me have to cut down trees that we are trying to protect with the Yale Street Green Corridor, which we helped to get into place. Not to mention it doesn't allow a drive through for the indie coffee shop we are working with (NOT Starbucks). also note the stained wood storefronts inspired by turn of the century commercial buildings. (like the firehouse on 12th). we tried to create a design that had a nod to the old style but has a modern appeal too. parking is a city code/tenant demand issue. i would LOVE to not have to pave so much, but this is a car town...just how it is. some prospective tenants think there isn't ENOUGH parking. tenant demand is a huge driver in the design. 

-signed the developer that lives just blocks from the site, in a hundred year old bungalow

 

Edited by Triton
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