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The Driscoll: New 29-Story apartment tower with retail for the River Oaks Shopping Center

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Tower itself is OK. Looks like Hanover Montrose, Hanover Post Oak, and Hanover BLVD Place had a three way and created a baby.

 

I love the River Oaks Shopping Center but this pretty much kills it. Bookends will be this high rise and the abomination Weingarten put of on Shepherd. 

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^^^ remarkable new edifice.  however, it seems to share certain exterior elements of the HANOVER TOWER at BLVD PLACE as well as the new WILSHIRE TOWER at ROD.  nice to have it in GOING UP!

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1 hour ago, KinkaidAlum said:

Tower itself is OK. Looks like Hanover Montrose, Hanover Post Oak, and Hanover BLVD Place had a three way and created a baby.

 

I love the River Oaks Shopping Center but this pretty much kills it. Bookends will be this high rise and the abomination Weingarten put of on Shepherd. 

 

Funny thing is those were all designed by Solomon Cordwell Buenz. Guess Hanover got Ziegler Cooper to come up with something similar, which is good. Rather see this than the designs they usually gives us for high-rise projects here. 

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I like the tower, color scheme, and base.

 

What I don't like is that the beige stone Americas building and the white Barnes & Noble don't really go along with this.

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The tower's name seems to follow a recent pattern for naming towers and midrises for the streets on which they are to be located (e.g. the Southmore, the Isabella).  However, because the Driscoll family helped develop River Oaks, I think Weingarten may have stumbled into a nice historical tie-in with the tower's name.

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11 hours ago, intencity77 said:

Nice building but it's ridiculously out of scale with its surroundings. 

 

That's what they said about Williams tower but they got over it.

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I like it. The building next to the grocery is a proven concept.

 

I think the approaching high rises will make the land use dollar$ difficult to work economically in the long term. I hope there is a way to protect this center so it does not bite the dust.

 

 

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This is pathetic. Maybe I'm overstating, but I don't think I am.

 

The tower looks fine, but once again Houston is "getting the density with none of the benefits."

 

The parking lot moat gives a great Houston vibe.

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1 minute ago, lockmat said:

The parking lot moat

 

The best description of this grand Houston tradition. 

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40 minutes ago, lockmat said:

This is pathetic. Maybe I'm overstating, but I don't think I am.

 

The tower looks fine, but once again Houston is "getting the density with none of the benefits."

 

The parking lot moat gives a great Houston vibe.

 

I know why you're saying. But I think they are wanting it to appear like an extension of the existing complex. Maybe it can be a little exception to the rule

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2 hours ago, Avossos said:

I like it. The building next to the grocery is a proven concept.

 

I think the approaching high rises will make the land use dollar$ difficult to work economically in the long term. I hope there is a way to protect this center so it does not bite the dust.

 

 

That's my only concern. Has this shopping center been put on any sort of preservation list? 

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52 minutes ago, j_cuevas713 said:

That's my only concern. Has this shopping center been put on any sort of preservation list? 

No

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2 hours ago, lockmat said:

This is pathetic. Maybe I'm overstating, but I don't think I am.

 

The tower looks fine, but once again Houston is "getting the density with none of the benefits."

 

The parking lot moat gives a great Houston vibe.

 

Yeah, I think you're overstating.  I don't see this as being an example of getting the density with none of the benefits.  Quite the contrary. This is a dense walkable area, filled with a great variety of shops, restaurants, movie theaters, grocery store, book store, bank, etc. etc.  This is exactly where we get the benefit of density.

Edited by Houston19514
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The shopping center is a city Historic Landmark, meaning the owner has to submit plans to the historic commission, but their decision is only binding for 90 days.

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A good parking space is a huge benefit in the real world (Houston 2017). Parking spaces are only the enemy when you go on the internet or whenever you realize that you aren't good enough to live in New York or Chicago or SF. But even in those cities, I never heard anyone complaining about parking right in front of where they are going - at least in real life.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Houston19514 said:

 

Yeah, I think you're overstating.  I don't see this as being an example of getting the density with none of the benefits.  Quite the contrary. This is a dense walkable area, filled with a great variety of shops, restaurants, movie theaters, grocery store, book store, bank, etc. etc.  This is exactly where we get the benefit of density.

 

I'll politely disagree that this is a dense area. There are suburban areas that are as dense or denser than this strip. This strip is not much different than any other suburban road except that it is inside the loop.

 

My main beef is the setback from the road and that the front porch is a parking lot. These developers act like they've never been to an urban city or stayed a hotel in one of those cities and experienced urbanity. If they were a resident, would they rather come out their apartment doors and have to look both ways before even getting to the sidewalk or would they just rather step onto the sidewalk?

 

It's sad that Houstonians agree to pay top dollar for a view without the urbanity to go with it.

 

But hey, I'm just a guy who lives in the suburbs, but I'll enjoy the view of the skyline as I pass by on the freeways!

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As someone who is a transplant from Chicago, this development is the epitome of urbanism. The residents of this building will be able to walk to everything and anything that is considered a daily necessity. That is hard to find in more areas of Inner Loop Houston. I'd rather a high-rise go here than in an empty lot next to townhomes. While I understand the preservationists who want to keep the historic nature of this strip mall (and yes I am surprised to say a historic strip mall), moving this shopping center forward with higher density will only improve its value. I am by no means saying let's demo the River Oaks Theatre, but let's continue the high-rise developments that are building out across highly-trafficked areas such as this center in order to continue Houston's ascent to urban-mecca instead of surburban wasteland.

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12 hours ago, monarch said:

34961609502_9b041c33b4_o.png&key=6e41b82

^^^ just thought that i'd place it on this page as well....

It is very nice, but the views to the east will one day be blocked when they redevelop the center where Fit, Cafe Express, etc is.  I am excited to see this addition to our skyline.  I would happily live there.

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That's a pretty solid argument for urbanism. I'm sure the businesses will welcome more walkup business,

and I'm sure the location adjacent to the River Oaks shopping center will be a nice sell for the project.

I'm sure it will be a huge success.

I do have mixed emotions about changing the scale of the center, but I'll keep an open mind and

a close eye on how they connect the public realm with West Gray, and they better keep

their hands off of the River Oaks Theater.

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The issue with the parking moat isn't that there is parking, but that walking through a parking lot when its 87 degrees and 75% humidity sucks.  Therefore it reduces the walkabilty of the area, reducing the benefits of density. 

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16 hours ago, Houston19514 said:

 

Yeah, I think you're overstating.  I don't see this as being an example of getting the density with none of the benefits.  Quite the contrary. This is a dense walkable area, filled with a great variety of shops, restaurants, movie theaters, grocery store, book store, bank, etc. etc.  This is exactly where we get the benefit of density.

 

I’m sorry Houston19514, I want to clarify that what I think is pathetic is the setback and the integration of the building into the strip center.

 

I agree with you and am glad the strip centers provide what makes a good dense place.

 

This area is walkable, but is the walk enjoyable? I think that’s one of the main aspects all of us are craving for as Houston densifies.

 

They probably could have made the setback much smaller, but they’d still have a Kroger parking lot dominating its east side. I think they could have integrated the tower much better if it was on a street corner.

 

No doubt they thought about this much longer and harder than I have and this provided the most potential for profit. So who knows. Let’s see how they continue to improve the property.

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15 minutes ago, lockmat said:

 

I’m sorry Houston19514, I want to clarify that what I think is pathetic is the setback and the integration of the building into the strip center.

 

I agree with you and am glad the strip centers provide what makes a good dense place.

 

This area is walkable, but is the walk enjoyable? I think that’s one of the main aspects all of us are craving for as Houston densifies.

 

They probably could have made the setback much smaller, but they’d still have a Kroger parking lot dominating its east side. I think they could have integrated the tower much better if it was on a street corner.

 

No doubt they thought about this much longer and harder than I have and this provided the most potential for profit. So who knows. Let’s see how they continue to improve the property.

 

The walking in this area takes place on the sidewalks that are adjacent to the shops and restaurants, not adjacent to the street.  Putting this tower on the street corner would have made the connection to the shops in the Kroger building (and Kroger) less convenient.  As designed, this will make the pedestrian connection to those shops significantly better than it is today.

 

I completely understand the desire to do away with setbacks.  But at the same time we want to preserve this "historic" shopping center.  We need to be cautious of letting the perfect (or dogma) be the enemy of the good.

Edited by Houston19514
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1 hour ago, cspwal said:

The issue with the parking moat isn't that there is parking, but that walking through a parking lot when its 87 degrees and 75% humidity sucks.  Therefore it reduces the walkabilty of the area, reducing the benefits of density. 

 

This palm look is cool and all, but without any shade trees - you are right. no escape from the sauna.

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2 hours ago, cspwal said:

The issue with the parking moat isn't that there is parking, but that walking through a parking lot when its 87 degrees and 75% humidity sucks.  Therefore it reduces the walkabilty of the area, reducing the benefits of density. 

I agree completely and that is why they will always have problems with the Uptown Galleria Post Oak area. An ocean of concrete, with little islands of AC 

scattered about with no connectivity and way to far to travel with packages or groceries.

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18 hours ago, bobruss said:

 better keep

their hands off of the River Oaks Theater.

Amen!

 

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5b78430d-ed52-46f7-b98b-25e5649c0c06.jpg

 

 

Quote

The second request is for proposed alterations to the commercial space on the west end of 1973 West Gray that was formerly occupied by California Pizza Kitchen. The changes (shown at right in a rendering) would include installing limestone tile on both floors of the building and significantly increasing the size of the windows on the second story.   
 

 

http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/Commissions/docs_pdfs/hahc/App_Materials_2017/June_MATERIALS/1997_W_Gray_Alt_PerrySteakhouse_App_Materials.pdf 

 

http://mailchi.mp/preservationhouston/discover-rice-universitys-distinctive-architecture-this-sunday-evening-721053?e=fbdb0ebb34

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1 hour ago, Mab said:

Looks nice. CPK stinks. I live very close and I'd much rather have Perry's steakhouse here. It might not be the best steakhouse but it's good for a mid priced meal.

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14 hours ago, jgriff said:

Looks nice. CPK stinks. I live very close and I'd much rather have Perry's steakhouse here. It might not be the best steakhouse but it's good for a mid priced meal.

 

It might not be the best steakhouse, but no one should go there for the steak. Their pork chop is unrivaled. I don't often use the word phenomenal, mainly because I can't spell it without assistance from Google, but also because it is a strong word, and the pork chop from Perry's is nothing short of phenomenal.

 

Do yourself this favor:

Find a Perry's near your office, find out what day they have their pork chop lunch special (like $10 for pork chop) and go early.

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30 minutes ago, samagon said:

find out what day they have their pork chop lunch special (like $10 for pork chop)...

 

Friday.

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2 hours ago, samagon said:

 

It might not be the best steakhouse, but no one should go there for the steak. Their pork chop is unrivaled. I don't often use the word phenomenal, mainly because I can't spell it without assistance from Google, but also because it is a strong word, and the pork chop from Perry's is nothing short of phenomenal.

 

Do yourself this favor:

Find a Perry's near your office, find out what day they have their pork chop lunch special (like $10 for pork chop) and go early.

 

This is the truth. Used to work by the Perrys meat market on Scarsdale. Best pork chop I've ever had.

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I just received this email notice a few minutes ago. So I guess there will be a fight for this project getting off the ground.

After rereading this I think they should have re read it also because they really botched the last couple of sentences.. 

 

e3d19f37-e659-4ba7-8d78-914e1c9b246f.png
NMCA Members and Friends of the Montrose Community
Weingarten's Realty is planning on doing some major construction and renovation to parts of the historic River Oaks Shopping Center. They will be submitting their request before the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission at a June 15th meeting. THE HAHC meeting is open to the public and begins at 3 p.m. in council chambers on the ground floor of City Hall Annex, 900 Bagby Street. Anyone wishing to address HAHC must sign in before 3 p.m. If you are concerned about the preserving this neighborhood landmark that features of one of the few remaining examples art deco style architecture in Houston, please considering attending this meeting. You may also want to express your concerns to city Councilman Ellen Cohen, and Councilman-at-Large David Robinson. This is the link to additional information published on the Houston Preservation website http://mailchi.mp/preservationhouston/discover-rice-universitys-distinctive-architecture-this-sunday-evening-721053?e=0836c09fb4
Edited by bobruss
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19 hours ago, bobruss said:

I just received this email notice a few minutes ago. So I guess there will be a fight for this project getting off the ground.

After rereading this I think they should have re read it also because they really botched the last couple of sentences.. 

 

e3d19f37-e659-4ba7-8d78-914e1c9b246f.png
NMCA Members and Friends of the Montrose Community
Weingarten's Realty is planning on doing some major construction and renovation to parts of the historic River Oaks Shopping Center. They will be submitting their request before the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission at a June 15th meeting. THE HAHC meeting is open to the public and begins at 3 p.m. in council chambers on the ground floor of City Hall Annex, 900 Bagby Street. Anyone wishing to address HAHC must sign in before 3 p.m. If you are concerned about the preserving this neighborhood landmark that features of one of the few remaining examples art deco style architecture in Houston, please considering attending this meeting. You may also want to express your concerns to city Councilman Ellen Cohen, and Councilman-at-Large David Robinson. This is the link to additional information published on the Houston Preservation website http://mailchi.mp/preservationhouston/discover-rice-universitys-distinctive-architecture-this-sunday-evening-721053?e=0836c09fb4

 

Normally I would be very sympathetic to this kind of concern, but in this case the architectural integrity of the shopping center was compromised back when the Barnes & Noble was built.  At this point I'm not convinced it is a battle worth fighting.

 

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if denied, they will simply wait 90 days and do what they want...

 

why fight it?

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1 hour ago, Subdude said:

 

Normally I would be very sympathetic to this kind of concern, but in this case the architectural integrity of the shopping center was compromised back when the Barnes & Noble was built.  At this point I'm not convinced it is a battle worth fighting.

 

 

This is well down the street from that. Go on Google Earth streetview and look at the existing building (1964 West Gray), then picture all of it knocked away right up to the central portion and replaced with a giant hulking garage and high rise. Tell me that is not worth fighting.

 

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21 hours ago, bobruss said:

CI just received this email notice a few minutes ago. So I guess there will be a fight for this project getting off the ground.

After rereading this I think they should have re read it also because they really botched the last couple of sentences.. 

 

e3d19f37-e659-4ba7-8d78-914e1c9b246f.png
NMCA Members and Friends of the Montrose Community
Weingarten's Realty is planning on doing some major construction and renovation to parts of the historic River Oaks Shopping Center. They will be submitting their request before the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission at a June 15th meeting. THE HAHC meeting is open to the public and begins at 3 p.m. in council chambers on the ground floor of City Hall Annex, 900 Bagby Street. Anyone wishing to address HAHC must sign in before 3 p.m. If you are concerned about the preserving this neighborhood landmark that features of one of the few remaining examples art deco style architecture in Houston, please considering attending this meeting. You may also want to express your concerns to city Councilman Ellen Cohen, and Councilman-at-Large David Robinson. This is the link to additional information published on the Houston Preservation website http://mailchi.mp/preservationhouston/discover-rice-universitys-distinctive-architecture-this-sunday-evening-721053?e=0836c09fb4

I live very close to this site. I walk to the midnight showings at River Oaks Theatre and Braissire 19. I'm all for them demolishing all of it, RO Theatre included, just to piss of people who try to tell property owners what they can do with their property. Anyone want to start a protest to call for RO theatre to be demolished? I'll picket out front with you.

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What is causing the hostility toward this high rise? Is there no street level retail? I can not tell from the drawings.  Or is this some sort of Ashby highrise based hostility?  It is not near the River Oaks theater so how did that get into the discussion? It just seems to occupy a corner near Krogers. 

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2 minutes ago, Twinsanity02 said:

What is causing the hostility toward this high rise? Is there no street level retail? I can not tell from the drawings.  Or is this some sort of Ashby highrise based hostility?  It is not near the River Oaks theater so how did that get into the discussion? It just seems to occupy a corner near Krogers. 

If I was in control of RO shopping center I would consider demolishing all of it now to preempt any political interference with their control of the property and their right to decide what the best use of their property is.

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"I'ma gonna destroy something I like cuz I don't like people telling property owners nothing."

 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, KinkaidAlum said:

 

"I'ma gonna destroy something I like cuz I don't like people telling property owners nothing."

 

 

 

No, destroy it to preserve the value of the property. 

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This is just the first high rise to go up. That land is to valuable to continue to be a one story shopping center. Before its over the entire center will be multi-level. 

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The real atrocity is limestone. Could have kept it black and white to blend in with the Art Deco awning & store facades. When will the obsession of beige be a thing of the past?

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I agree with Subdude. This shopping center lost its architectural integrity when B&N was built. I do want to keep the art deco look, but it is a strip mall that has already been altered multiple times. Why don't we focus on the benefits to the area versus the integrity of a strip mall's architecture that has already been destroyed? My question is why didn't they just build on the parking lot facing Kroger? It has enough room to house a parking garage for Kroger with opportunity to bring the Kroger to the streetside.

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