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WestMont: Mixed-Use Development Coming to Montrose (1001 Westheimer)


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I wonder what is going to happen to the tenants that are there now and their leases? I agree about covering up original facades with unattractive coverings, maybe the architects will incorporate some of the old Art Deco design into their new development?

Edited by cityliving
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Chain link fence around the closed Jack In The Box

Does anyone know where this is?

Jack In The Box has closed.

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I am beyond excited about this corner of houston getting the attention it deserves! I vote for no mattress store to reopen and for Half Price Books to take over that kooky building between Smoothie King and Snooze...(or somewhere else cool as i love Half Price Books and want it to have a cool new home)

 

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55 minutes ago, gene said:

I am beyond excited about this corner of houston getting the attention it deserves! I vote for no mattress store to reopen and for Half Price Books to take over that kooky building between Smoothie King and Snooze...(or somewhere else cool as i love Half Price Books and want it to have a cool new home)

 

I saw a sign for another medical Emergency Room coming to that spot between Smoothie King and Snooze.

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15 minutes ago, clutchcity94 said:

I saw a sign for another medical Emergency Room coming to that spot between Smoothie King and Snooze.

 

I hope it is the existing one in the mentioned center relocating since their lease is up...

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I hope Skanska puts A LOT more thought into the pedestrian experience and overall design than they did at Capitol Tower (not that whatever this becomes will be at the scale of a Downtown Tower). They REALLY need to step it up to Hines, Midway, Hanover, and Radom levels of thought and design.

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20 minutes ago, J.A. said:

I hope Skanska puts A LOT more thought into the pedestrian experience and overall design than they did at Capitol Tower (not that whatever this becomes will be at the scale of a Downtown Tower). They REALLY need to step it up to Hines, Midway, Hanover, and Radom levels of thought and design.

Exactly recognize you have a opportunity to do something that could define Montrose for the next 50 years . The goal should be something bold that stands out.

Edited by Moore713
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19 minutes ago, J.A. said:

I hope Skanska puts A LOT more thought into the pedestrian experience and overall design than they did at Capitol Tower (not that whatever this becomes will be at the scale of a Downtown Tower). They REALLY need to step it up to Hines, Midway, Hanover, and Radom levels of thought and design.

I think the Capitol Tower is actually quite nice in terms of pedestrian experience.  The opening into Understory is clear and quite inviting.  It lacks the same opportunities for ground floor tenants as 609 Main, but I think the design was mean to engage the surface with the tunnel space below.  Skanska's "tunnel space" connects with the ground level in a way that I haven't seen with other structures Downtown.  I would not peg the Capitol Tower design as lacking thought. It just engages the ground level differently than more traditional retail rings.

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Per Nancy Sarnoff in today's Houston Chronicle
"Skanska USA Commercial Development closed this week on a $27 million acquisition of the property at the southwest corner of Westheimer and Montrose where it plans to build an apartment and retail development."

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As long as Half-Price books stays in the area, I don't care what they build there. Unless its a cookie-cutter apt like the Montrose at Buffalo Bayou *shudders*. 

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Eh, this is one of the most important intersections in the city. I'm hoping for something genuinely great (like the Montrose Collective + 500 apartments or something) rather than just good enough.

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30 minutes ago, KinkaidAlum said:

Just googled Skanska residential. Mostly midrise but a new mixed-use high rise in Seattle is going up. Their projects look safe. Nothing bad but nothing great.

 

Capitol Tower is pretty damn safe too. I'm not expecting too much. Not Radom caliber.

Edited by H-Town Man
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1 hour ago, Texasota said:

Eh, this is one of the most important intersections in the city. I'm hoping for something genuinely great (like the Montrose Collective + 500 apartments or something) rather than just good enough.

Not only the intersection, but that particular block is the best one on one of the best intersections.

 

Lincoln Street bisects the block immediately across Westheimer. The Aladdin block is irregularly shaped and about half the size. 

 

The smoothie King block across Montrose it's bigger and would probably be better suited to the open renderings we saw a few pages back.

But the south West corner of that intersection is a perfect parcel on one of the more popular intersections in town. I just think archiphiles would expect greatness here. It's not going to be hard to disappoint us on this one. Hopes are high.

 

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On 8/5/2020 at 8:00 PM, HoustonIsHome said:

Lincoln Street bisects the block immediately across Westheimer.

Lincoln St.'s primary function has become to serve as access to Velaro's and Shake Shack's parking lots. It gets little through traffic.
If those businesses were bought out and leveled for the purpose of building a high-rise, I suspect the city would be OK with abandoning Lincoln St.
But still, I agree that the SW corner of Montrose and Westheimer is best situated for constructing a high-rise. I'm still concerned about how access to onsite parking will be handled. Additional people mean additional cars and pedestrians, and poorly placed driveways can do a dandy job of interfering with traffic.

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On 8/5/2020 at 9:57 AM, cspwal said:
Quote

The 44,000-square-foot shopping center at 1001 Westheimer dates back to 1937 when it was the Tower Community Center, according to Preservation Houston. Houston City Hall architect Joseph Finger designed the center to complement the adjacent Tower Theater. In the 1980s, its Art Deco facade was covered by stucco.

 

This isn't exactly accurate. The building received a restyle in the 70's and was covered with that pebbly finished composite that was so popular at the time. Windows were given an angular, recessed look. I think this was done when the building functioned as a bank; there used to be a drive-thru close to where Jack-In-The-Box is now. 
In the mid-eighties, a half-hearted attempt was made to make it look somewhat Art Deco again, which is when the 70's alterations were removed;. This is when the stucco, pastel colors,  and 80's ceramic tiles were added.

Edited by dbigtex56
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On 8/6/2020 at 9:09 AM, gene said:

same @Tumbleweed_Tx

 

and hey so the jack in the box will be knocked down and this new development will get that whole parcel of land then right? sorry if i missed that

 

 

 I believe so. The article said that the parcel is ~ 3 acres, which to my inexpert eye looks about right for that entire block.

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The Jack in the Box Lot is also owned by Westmont according to Harris County Appraisal District. Plus the article mentions the Jack in the Box.

 

I had a co-worker see a homeless person take a dump in the middle of the day behind the Jack in the Box.

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43 minutes ago, clutchcity94 said:

So you’re telling me that land is worth $215/sq ft?!

 

😲

 

Shoot! Will Skanska buy my 5,000 ft lot in Montrose from me?! I’ll give them 50% off !! LOL


huge premium for having a full superblock on a hard corner of two major arteries. There really is no

limit to what you can build and the uses that it would attract (retail,office, housing, etc)
 

generally the highest and best land value for a 5k sq ft lot would be 3 townhomes or a single family residence. 

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17 minutes ago, HNathoo said:


huge premium for having a full superblock on a hard corner of two major arteries. There really is no

limit to what you can build and the uses that it would attract (retail,office, housing, etc)
 

generally the highest and best land value for a 5k sq ft lot would be 3 townhomes or a single family residence. 

Who was the previous owner before Skanska bought it?

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Is there a reason that, despite Houston's lack of zoning and lot splitting, building "townhomes" with ground floor retail hasn't taken off anywhere? I feel like little pop-ups like that would work great in some of Montrose's back streets. I'd love to see some pedestrian corridors like that.

edit: Ah, just thought of it. Parking requirements. No way you could make that work without zero min parking or market based parking.

Edited by HouTXRanger
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Just now, HouTXRanger said:

Is there a reason that, despite Houston's lack of zoning and lot splitting, building "townhomes" with ground floor retail hasn't taken off anywhere? I feel like little pop-ups like that would work great in some of Montrose's back streets. I'd love to see some pedestrian corridors like that.

 

I suspect the biggest issue is parking.  Until recently, the only place that it would even be possible to do that would have been downtown, and downtown already has a lot of vacant retail spots that are more purpose built.  East side of midtown could've started having that, but the parking requirements are still in force there, so even a small retail spot would need a bunch of off-street parking, a lot more than the 2 needed for a townhouse.  Which brings up the fact that most Houston townhouses are mostly garage on the first floor

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45 minutes ago, HouTXRanger said:

Is there a reason that, despite Houston's lack of zoning and lot splitting, building "townhomes" with ground floor retail hasn't taken off anywhere? I feel like little pop-ups like that would work great in some of Montrose's back streets. I'd love to see some pedestrian corridors like that.

edit: Ah, just thought of it. Parking requirements. No way you could make that work without zero min parking or market based parking.

This might be possible under the new TOD ordinance on primary TOD corridors, which will go to market based parking. 

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4 minutes ago, houstontexasjack said:

This might be possible under the new TOD ordinance on primary TOD corridors, which will go to market based parking. 

Not really, unfortunately. I'm thinking of rows of townhouses, more or less as they exist now, but instead of garages they have a tiny little retail space. Not really possible, or at least economical, if there are any off-street parking requirements at all, and TOD only reduces them, not eliminates them.

IIRC Walkable Places is the one that applies market based parking. TOD is a blanket ~50% reduction for everything.

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In downtown, east downtown, and the west side of midtown, there's no parking minimums, but I don't know how well garage-less townhouses would sell over there.  They would probably sell for less, discouraging developers from making them

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34 minutes ago, HouTXRanger said:
40 minutes ago, houstontexasjack said:

 

Not really, unfortunately. I'm thinking of rows of townhouses, more or less as they exist now, but instead of garages they have a tiny little retail space.


I agree, that would be cool. Back in the day, many people would have a small business in the front of their bungalow and live in the back. and it made for a more lively streetscape.
Townhome developers like to cram as many square feet of living space on the lot as possible, which means no attics or utility closets are provided for things and stuff. Many townhome dwellers already have put their garages to use as mini-storage units, relegating their cars to driveways or the street.
Persuading people to give up their storage and/or parking space would be a hard sell. 

Edited by dbigtex56
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37 minutes ago, HouTXRanger said:

Not really, unfortunately. I'm thinking of rows of townhouses, more or less as they exist now, but instead of garages they have a tiny little retail space. Not really possible, or at least economical, if there are any off-street parking requirements at all, and TOD only reduces them, not eliminates them.

IIRC Walkable Places is the one that applies market based parking. TOD is a blanket ~50% reduction for everything.

 

I don't think that's right. Walkable places don't automatically lower parking requirements. 

 

In transit corridors, primary streets are now exempt from parking requirements and secondary streets get a 50% reduction.

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13 minutes ago, Texasota said:

 

I don't think that's right. Walkable places don't automatically lower parking requirements. 

 

In transit corridors, primary streets are now exempt from parking requirements and secondary streets get a 50% reduction.


I'm not sure if that's 100% right either, but I sure as hell like the idea of ZERO required parking on a TOD main street. That's fantastic!

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1 hour ago, HouTXRanger said:


I'm not sure if that's 100% right either, but I sure as hell like the idea of ZERO required parking on a TOD main street. That's fantastic!

Secondary TOD corridors have a 50% reduction for commercial construction. Primary corridors have no parking requirement and are full market-based.  I’ve linked to a handy executive summary below:

 

https://houstontx.gov/planning/docs_pdfs/TOD_Ordinance_Summary_Report.pdf

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3 hours ago, clutchcity94 said:

Who was the previous owner before Skanska bought it?

 It was Madison Marquette (PMRG). They built the Travis high rise in midtown.

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16 minutes ago, houstontexasjack said:

Secondary TOD corridors have a 50% reduction for commercial construction. Primary corridors have no parking requirement and are full market-based.  I’ve linked to a handy executive summary below:

 

https://houstontx.gov/planning/docs_pdfs/TOD_Ordinance_Summary_Report.pdf

Hmm, I always thought market based parking was just a different, reduced set of parking requirements. Turns out it's just a renaming for getting rid of parking minimums at all. Nice!

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Because the market sets the parking requirements - home buyers, renters, and commercial tenants will still want parking, just not necessarily as much as the city's requirements

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On 8/7/2020 at 4:32 PM, dbigtex56 said:


I agree, that would be cool. Back in the day, many people would have a small business in the front of their bungalow and live in the back. and it made for a more lively streetscape.
Townhome developers like to cram as many square feet of living space on the lot as possible, which means no attics or utility closets are provided for things and stuff. Many townhome dwellers already have put their garages to use as mini-storage units, relegating their cars to driveways or the street.
Persuading people to give up their storage and/or parking space would be a hard sell. 

Not to drive this topic further off and into the burbs - but Town home people usually rent storage spaces. Or they park their over sized truck on the street because the garage is too small. Guest Parking is more of an issue. Or if there are Roommates.

 

Nearly every suburb I've been in - affluent or not, has every driveway crammed full of cars because people use their garages to store all their junk. League City, the Woodlands, Katy, Cypress, Spring, you name it. That's on top of having a storage unit as well. Consumers like their stuff.

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30 minutes ago, Montrose1100 said:

Not to drive this topic further off and into the burbs - but Town home people usually rent storage spaces. Or they park their over sized truck on the street because the garage is too small. Guest Parking is more of an issue. Or if there are Roommates.

 

Nearly every suburb I've been in - affluent or not, has every driveway crammed full of cars because people use their garages to store all their junk. League City, the Woodlands, Katy, Cypress, Spring, you name it. That's on top of having a storage unit as well. Consumers like their stuff.

 

I don't have a storage unit. Most people I know don't. When I peer into open garages I see some crammed with items. Other garages are spotless and vacant, but many just contain items along the walls. Suburban driveways are often crammed full of cars because there are multiple teenagers/young adults who drive as well. Also, I am a town home person and the ratio of vehicles on the street to homes around here is extremely low--mainly because very little street parking even exists. As for trucks, in my shared driveway, fewer than 15% of households contain a person who drives a truck. In the 10 town houses across the street its 20%. I'll be the first to admit that using just two examples in a metro area of 7 million+ people is not enough data to pipe out generalizations about basically everyone who lives here. That's baseless and tired. However, not everyone drives an over-sized truck, maintains a garage full of storage items, and rents a storage unit.

 

 

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2 hours ago, skooljunkie said:

 

I don't have a storage unit. Most people I know don't. When I peer into open garages I see some crammed with items. Other garages are spotless and vacant, but many just contain items along the walls. Suburban driveways are often crammed full of cars because there are multiple teenagers/young adults who drive as well. Also, I am a town home person and the ratio of vehicles on the street to homes around here is extremely low--mainly because very little street parking even exists. As for trucks, in my shared driveway, fewer than 15% of households contain a person who drives a truck. In the 10 town houses across the street its 20%. I'll be the first to admit that using just two examples in a metro area of 7 million+ people is not enough data to pipe out generalizations about basically everyone who lives here. That's baseless and tired. However, not everyone drives an over-sized truck, maintains a garage full of storage items, and rents a storage unit.

 

 

If you're going to expand on my statement, you should include those who own multiple cars, so we can both broaden our generalizations. :P

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On 9/6/2020 at 4:44 PM, hindesky said:

Yes it is. Checked all the doors of other business to see if they had any more info but nothing yet.

 

Madison Marquette is listed as the Owner/Occupant on the demolition permit issued yesterday.

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