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Discovery West: Skanska Downtown Mixed-Use Development


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Updated renderings.              

Project: 1550 on the Green   Address: 1550 Lamar St. Houston, TX 77010   Architects: Bjarke Ingels Group (Design Consultant) Kendall/Heaton Associates (Arc

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god those renderings are SEXY!  I love how they have segmented the building into targeted tenant chunks.  The semi-open garage is going to be interesting, that is always a tricky element on podium towers so hopefully the detailing will pay dividends. 

I cant help but see this a a major contrast against what is to me a bland Hines Block 58.  I know the location is very different and drives the design to an extent but I can see this building commanding higher rents than the other vanilla ice cream recent downtown projects (including their owner cap tower).

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11 hours ago, HtownWxBoy said:

It's amazing how much this part of Downtown has changed / continues to change with the help of Discovery Green.  When I moved here in 2002 I wouldn't even consider walking by this area... now it's my neighborhood. 

DG.jpg

Is that a helipad in the park?

Wonderful to see this area get built out, gives me hope for the other oceans of asphalt in downtown.

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On 5/24/2021 at 9:31 PM, HtownWxBoy said:

It's amazing how much this part of Downtown has changed / continues to change with the help of Discovery Green.  When I moved here in 2002 I wouldn't even consider walking by this area... now it's my neighborhood. 

DG.jpg

My God! Imagine how people who hate everything in Houston now musta felt back then. 

 

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25 minutes ago, Response said:

My God! Imagine how people who hate everything in Houston now musta felt back then. 

 

I knew the family owners of the building and business (a pest control chemical company) at the corner of Jackson/Polk to the south of the convention center that had been there for decades.  It was frequently robbed and wasn't anywhere anyone wanted to be. It's around the Hilton's loading dock area now.  

The whole convention center/DG area transformation since the early 80's is mind boggling. 

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2 hours ago, wilcal said:

This was just posted in the bicycle advisory committee infrastructure meeting. Staging for this project is going to block the bike lane so a temporary bike lane is going to be made, and the developer is going to pay for the temporary polk st segment to become permanent in addition to restoring it along lamar/crawford after construction.

26 month construction for the project and the start is imminent. Temp bike lane going in as soon as next week.

KPLharx.png

They're putting up a temporary bike lane for construction blockage? That's insane! It's like someone, somewhere treats the bike lanes as actual transportation infrastructure . . .

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On 5/24/2021 at 9:31 PM, HtownWxBoy said:

It's amazing how much this part of Downtown has changed / continues to change with the help of Discovery Green.  When I moved here in 2002 I wouldn't even consider walking by this area... now it's my neighborhood. 

DG.jpg

And who could forget the Texaco/Havoline Grand Prix of Houston... (from Wikipedia)

Houston_CART_circuit_transparent.png

Sounded like a bunch of angry bees during practice the week or so before.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, mollusk said:

And who could forget the Texaco/Havoline Grand Prix of Houston... (from Wikipedia)

 

Sounded like a bunch of angry bees during practice the week or so before.

I could hear those “bees” from my house in Montrose. I watched a bit of the race from the comfort of a nearby parking garage. 

Edited by MidCenturyMoldy
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1 hour ago, MidCenturyMoldy said:

I could hear those “bees” from my house in Montrose. I watched a bit of the race from the comfort of a nearby parking garage. 

We watched the race from our balcony over Crawford at Franklin and at the beginning of the race one of the jet squadrons flew right down Crawford and shook our windows like they were going to fall out. The cars would come right down Crawford and during the week they practiced on the raceway and it did sound like bees the whole week. 

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3 hours ago, mollusk said:

And who could forget the Texaco/Havoline Grand Prix of Houston... (from Wikipedia)

Houston_CART_circuit_transparent.png

Sounded like a bunch of angry bees during practice the week or so before.

Maybe I'm just used to the much more intricate F1 layouts, but that seems like a pretty lame race track (as far as turns go; a Downtown Houston race would be awesome to watch for the location/scenery).

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5 hours ago, HouTXRanger said:

They're putting up a temporary bike lane for construction blockage? That's insane! It's like someone, somewhere treats the bike lanes as actual transportation infrastructure . . .

I was thinking the same thing! Finally some attention to pedestrians

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11 hours ago, asubrt said:

Maybe I'm just used to the much more intricate F1 layouts, but that seems like a pretty lame race track (as far as turns go; a Downtown Houston race would be awesome to watch for the location/scenery).

I, for one, would love to see a Houston F1 GP combining parts of downtown with Memorial/Allen. 

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I, for one, would love to see a Houston F1 GP combining parts of downtown with Memorial/Allen. 

send it through montrose, we would have 20 DNF's.....

Back to the topic, major props to the Skanska folks for thinking about the cycling folks.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Skanska does good work — I’m looking forward to seeing this one rise.  And it marks the final development immediately adjacent to Discovery Green!  No more surface parking lots flanking the park. 😊

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6 hours ago, Urbannizer said:

Here's some positive news to end the night-(or to start your morning).

https://news.cision.com/skanska/r/skanska-invests-usd-225m--about-sek-1-9-billion--in-the-office-development-project-1550-on-the-green,c3373477

It is good news. I assume the three blocks mentioned are the surface parking lots flanked by Austin and LaBranch streets near  Discovery Green.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, nate4l1f3 said:

Thanks! This is why we need sticky posts within threads. 
 

The little quarter purple block angers me lol

I asked the site superintendent about that small section of the lot and he said he works for the construction arm of Skanska and doesn't really know what kept the Skanska development wing from purchasing that portion. To me it seems like whoever owns it is missing out on the one great opportunity to sell this.

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4 minutes ago, hindesky said:

I asked the site superintendent about that small section of the lot and he said he works for the construction arm of Skanska and doesn't really know what kept the Skanska development wing from purchasing that portion. To me it seems like whoever owns it is missing out on the one great opportunity to sell this.

Golconda Ventures.  Long-term owner of a bunch of blocks in the southeast part of downtown Houston and they have historically had no interest in selling or developing.

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5 hours ago, MarathonMan said:

Skanska does good work — I’m looking forward to seeing this one rise.  And it marks the final development immediately adjacent to Discovery Green!  No more surface parking lots flanking the park. 😊

Did a @hindesky type ride through downtown. Say what ya want about Discovery Green as a park, but I couldn't help thinking with the amount of people who were there at 7pm on a Wednesday that so much of this development was made possible by that park and what its done for that area. City just needs some more greenery to link this area to Bagby (which is starting to look incredible), and main street's water feature and stuff helps, and I can't help but think this will continue the revitalization of downtown in a massive way.

The barriers were already spilling out onto Labranch's road a bit so I'm assuming some part of Labranch will be shut down when things really get heavy. Exciting. 

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54 minutes ago, Houston19514 said:

Golconda Ventures.  Long-term owner of a bunch of blocks in the southeast part of downtown Houston and they have historically had no interest in selling or developing.

I think they're an entity of the Taiwanese national oil company? Which probably has good motivation to park their money somewhere outside of Taiwan.

 

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27 minutes ago, X.R. said:

Did a @hindesky type ride through downtown. Say what ya want about Discovery Green as a park, but I couldn't help thinking with the amount of people who were there at 7pm on a Wednesday that so much of this development was made possible by that park and what its done for that area. City just needs some more greenery to link this area to Bagby (which is starting to look incredible), and main street's water feature and stuff helps, and I can't help but think this will continue the revitalization of downtown in a massive way.

The barriers were already spilling out onto Labranch's road a bit so I'm assuming some part of Labranch will be shut down when things really get heavy. Exciting. 

maybe it's just the surrounding buildings, but the main street water feature just feels like a cold lifeless area to me.

I'd love to see the fountain between Lamar and McKinney replaced with something like what they have in the flanking street areas that are ped only.

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5 hours ago, pacarlson said:

Any official structure height for this one yet?  I'm guessing it has a reasonable chance to exceed 400' given trending FF office heights.

I'm betting 508' total, so shorter than one park place and taller than Hess tower. Knock on wood, but I'm betting every building in this development will be in the 500'+ range. 

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1 hour ago, TheSirDingle said:

I'm betting 508' total, so shorter than one park place and taller than Hess tower. Knock on wood, but I'm betting every building in this development will be in the 500'+ range. 

I'm willing to bet that this will probably be the shortest building in the development.

 

On 6/24/2021 at 12:00 PM, Houston19514 said:

Golconda Ventures.  Long-term owner of a bunch of blocks in the southeast part of downtown Houston and they have historically had no interest in selling or developing.

You know, the city should really penalize property owners who own surface parking lots or undeveloped lots downtown and refuse to develop them or sell them.

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10 minutes ago, Big E said:

You know, the city should really penalize property owners who own surface parking lots or undeveloped lots downtown and refuse to develop them or sell them.

There would be no legal or constitutional basis for doing this. Part of the right to own property is the right not to sell it. This was a natural right before a lot of other things that people consider natural rights.

On the other hand, the city has condemned property in this part of town when it was needed for the Toyota Center.

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6 hours ago, H-Town Man said:

There would be no legal or constitutional basis for doing this. Part of the right to own property is the right not to sell it. This was a natural right before a lot of other things that people consider natural rights.

On the other hand, the city has condemned property in this part of town when it was needed for the Toyota Center.

You could create tax incentives or penalties that could help push development though. 

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9 hours ago, jmitch94 said:

You could create tax incentives or penalties that could help push development though. 

We already had the Downtown Living Initiative and Opportunity Zones.  Not sure if penalties would fly in TX.  Maybe when the foreign oil company that owns several of the lots downtown sales their lots their will be a dramatic change.

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11 hours ago, jmitch94 said:

You could create tax incentives or penalties that could help push development though. 

There already is a tax penalty - they have to pay a bunch of property tax every year on the land as it sits there. And there are positive incentives, as BeerNut mentioned. You can't really do much more without endangering Houston's reputation as a good place for investment. We want more foreign money flowing into Houston because it benefits us, on the whole. We don't want to scare away what foreign money we have.

We also aren't anywhere close to a point where we need Golconda's land to continue growing and improving downtown. Skanska has a pretty big chunk of land that will take them most of a decade to develop to its highest potential. There are numerous sites around Market Square, Jones Plaza, Minute Maid Park, and all along Main Street that are ready to be developed. By reducing the supply of available land, you actually get better projects on the remaining land, something that Austin has experienced with its Capitol View Corridors. So don't worry.

 

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 Downtown surface parking lots may have to be placed in an  "endangered species". Their boom times were the 1970's through the 1990's. They appear to be disappearing. My concern are the hideous high rise garages which bludgeon the eye, such as one can sees at Main and Walker. The ideal would be high rise garages such as the one at Preston and Louisiana.

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5 hours ago, tangledwoods said:

Two 3D spin around renderings are now on the sales site:

1550 on the Green

 

looking at the top floor 360 render, it looks like this will be right up there in height with one park place (518 ft), maybe a few feet shorter. 

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13 hours ago, Twinsanity02 said:

 Downtown surface parking lots may have to be placed in an  "endangered species". Their boom times were the 1970's through the 1990's. They appear to be disappearing. My concern are the hideous high rise garages which bludgeon the eye, such as one can sees at Main and Walker. The ideal would be high rise garages such as the one at Preston and Louisiana.

I'm all for high density parking with at least some ground floor retail. It's a million times better than the equivalent 8-10 surface lots. There's no point in worrying about beauty until we obtain the walkability to enjoy the beauty.

Edited by staresatmaps
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