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About a year and a half back I was lucky enough to experience the view from one of the penthouses at night. This was before the unit was built out, so there weren't any light fixtures (at all!) to cr

Here's a view of downtown from one of the towers. ] flickr leadingmodels

Thanks Eddie: It's a hot night. The mind races. You think about your knife; the only friend who hasn't betrayed you, the only friend who won't be dead by sun up. Sleep tight, mates, in your quilted

While we're all a bit jaded after seeing dirt moved before, this one feels real somehow. Hey, they're already ahead of Shamrock.

And while this project might be looked at years from now as the lever that lifted the area into residential prominence, even if it bombed out, another would surely replace it as the spot and area is just too full of potential for high rise development to be left in mediocrity.

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I do admit, the brick/pavers at the major intersections are very nice. I watched them put those in. And you can talke Almead from 610 to 59 and every light is green.

I remember when this area had horse stables. I'd do the pony trot ride there in the 70s.

I have a picture of my Dad from the 60s in the old stables. He was Mr. SFA H.S. In the picture with him was Mrs. SFA H.S., who ended up being married to Rod Stewart.

Too much info, I know. But Almeda is apparently on its way back.

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I do admit, the brick/pavers at the major intersections are very nice. I watched them put those in. And you can talke Almead from 610 to 59 and every light is green.

I remember when this area had horse stables. I'd do the pony trot ride there in the 70s.

I have a picture of my Dad from the 60s in the old stables. He was Mr. SFA H.S. In the picture with him was Mrs. SFA H.S., who ended up being married to Rod Stewart.

Too much info, I know. But Almeda is apparently on its way back.

Here are some photos I took of "Trendy Almeda Road" on Wednesday.

http://www.houstonarchitecture.info/haif/i...?showtopic=4654

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  • 1 month later...

Positive news for this project. According to the Houston Business Journal, the developer has secured financing and will begin consructing the first of the two proposed towers within the next three months. Here's the link to the story:

http://houston.bizjournals.com/houston/sto.../23/daily6.html

...also, I just noticed that the Chronicle picked up on this as well:

Project near the park

Last week, a development group got the go-ahead to start building a 28-story apartment tower on Almeda Road across from Hermann Park.

Raleigh, N.C.-based Phillips Development & Realty and Wood Partners of Atlanta said they received $101 million in funding to start the first building of Mosaic, a twin tower high-rise rental and condominium project. The plans for the buildings call for 788 units and shops on the ground level.

"Mosaic will be the first high-rise residence built in this area in two decades," said the general contractor on the project, Peter Doyle, chairman and chief executive of J.E. Dunn of Texas.

Rents will average around $2 per square foot or roughly $1,100 for a small one-bedroom apartment.

Located at 5925 Almeda Road near the Museum District and the Medical Center, the project should be completed by the end of next year, according to the developers.

The second building, however, will take more time to get off the ground.

That's because it's a condominium tower. Lenders often require developers to pre-sell half of the units before writing a check for construction. But so far, only five sales reservations have been made for the condos, and the group marketing the project is no longer involved.

The developer said it pulled back on marketing the building because it's trying to get financing without

pre-sales.

When the project was announced last summer, the developer said the units would be less than 1,000 square feet on average. He said they would be on the smaller side to keep prices down and attract younger buyers that work in the area. He said units would start in the $180,000s.

"This profile buyer generally doesn't have $25,000 to $50,000 to put down and sit on for two years," said Brad Minsley, a partner with Phillips Development & Realty.

Minsley said lenders financed an Atlanta condo building for Wood Partners on a speculative basis, and he's hoping the Houston project can be financed the same way.

But it will take convincing.

"Houston has sort of an unproven past with condominiums, but people are very bullish on the medical center and its growth," he

said.

Edited by mike1
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Trendy Almeda Road eh? I actually like and appreciate Almeda Road eventhough it has its fair share of strip malls but the lots aren't oversized. I get a down to earth type vibe when I am on that road and I love the houses in the area. It actually looks like the city tried to make the area look nice and the residents are keeping it up. Maybe I like it because it is an underdog and not that popular.

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  • 1 month later...

Has anyone heard anything about this project lately? I know there are construction cranes, but has anyone seen them DOING anything?

I went by there Thursday (around 10am) and Friday (around 3pm), the sales office was locked, no cars in the parking lot, and all the lights were out. I went back this weekend (1pm on Saturday and 3 pm on Sunday) and there's now a sign in the door that says "The Sales Office will open again soon."

edit: I just got an email this morning from the marketing director for Phillips saying the Sales Office will reopen again in a few weeks and that brochures, floorplans, and pricing are not currently available but that she'll email me when they are.

Which is odd... since the floorplans are already posted on their website.

I smell something...

Edited by danes75
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Saw the foundation is set along with first and second floor support beams. This is now a reality. "I said we movin on up "movin on up", to the eastside "movin on up"/ to a deee-luxe apartment in da sky-y-y!" I knew this was a sureshot when Houston Retail said he already secured a unit a few months back. He's on da "inside". Thing is about livin here, where's all the retail? I wouldn't move here for that reason. You'd have to drive down to reliant to get any good food unless you count the almeda food, (Spanish village, greens bbq, the cafeteria) or Main street which is still a few minutes away. But that areas turnin into a residential district real fast. Pretty promising. How long if ever do you think it will take powerhouse retailers to plant a few stores on almeda? Isn't there already a strip center in the making round there?

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"The developer said it pulled back on marketing the building because it's trying to get financing without pre-sales."

What kind of BS is this statement from the developer about the condo tower? It looks and sounds like the condo is on hold, but the apartment tower has financing and is moving forward. Good news for the med center, but I got news for you, this area is more trendy 3rd ward/almeda street than musuem district it wants to be.

Dream

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"The developer said it pulled back on marketing the building because it's trying to get financing without pre-sales."

What kind of BS is this statement from the developer about the condo tower? It looks and sounds like the condo is on hold, but the apartment tower has financing and is moving forward. Good news for the med center, but I got news for you, this area is more trendy 3rd ward/almeda street than musuem district it wants to be.

Dream

You are correct from what i hear. This will never be a true condo development. At BEST, at i am not sure how good you can consider this, it will be built to apartment standards and then converted to condos. They couldn't get presales, so they financed it as apartments and away they went.

They say the condo tower will follow. But, then again, i/we've heard that before.....

Won't happen b/c it shouldn't happen..

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Don't think this is such a bad thing though, I wouldn't mind that same trend in downtown. Instead of people trying to sell these $750K units on 40 stories (AKA the shamrock), it would be nice to see some mid rises (or high rises) built that were intended to be apartments and then could be converted later down the line. That's basically what post midtown did successfully.

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A bunch of naysayers on this board.

From the VERY beginning, MOSAIC was planned as an apartment tower and a condo tower. The companies involved are VERY experienced with building hi-rises and are bringing a NEW concept to Houston; smaller condos with a smaller price point.

That said, they are seeking financing of the condo tower without having to have a certain % of units sold before groundbreaking can begin. The thinking was that people at this end of the market (likely first time buyers) will not put money down on a unit that is 2 years away from reality. With the connections these companies have, I don't doubt that the condo tower will break ground in the next few months followed by a re-opening of the sales center.

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Yeah, right after they change Hermann Park Golf course into a members only country club with 50k a initiation fee. Then they can give free memberships away to the people who won't buy the Mosiac condos across the street. Never gonna happen, just more apartments.

Dream

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I hate to point out the obvious, but the naysayers have a foundation for their /our/ skepticism. Orion... Scamrock... both had pretty little sales centers/models/trailers and neither amounted to squat. When the sales offices mysteriously close and will reopen "soon", emails are sent out saying that floorplans and pricing aren't "available", and the website information isn't right and is "being updated", something's up.

Websites don't take months to update, brochures don't take months to print, and established pricing that's now being refigured means the plan they had isn't going to work and they're having to make changes. Sure they may be building the apartments and thats great. But I'm not going to buy an apartment/condo conversion. They're usually built on the cheap and I don't want to hear my neighbors walking around upstairs no matter what the view.

Edited by danes75
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I agree with you Danes; we have reason to doubt.

That said, the developlment team at Mosaic is top notch. Unlike the Scamrock and Orion, they are not a fly-by-night type of operation. They have YEARS of experience building these projects. Many doubted that ANY part of this project would ever take off. Go back and read this thread. Glut of apartments. Bad location. Too risky. Hurricanes. Rising cost of steel. Yet, through it all, the ground has already broken for half of the project.

IF, and it is a big IF, they can secure the funding for this concept (lower priced units/smaller condos/selling location and bldg amenities), this condo tower WILL rise. I'd imagine that investors would be rewarded too. There's a market in Houston for what they are selling. It's just untested. I hope they can secure the funding because we might see more urban, well-designed mid to high rises with sane pricing pop up in the general vicinity.

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Have you never been to the 3rd Ward, citykid?!?

In my opinion, Almeda is one of the best streets in Houston. It's got a little history, a little rebirth, a little upscale to it, and plenty of its old rural feel as soon as you get just outside the South Loop.

The only picture on that 002 page above that I think is cool is the one in the middle. It looks like an urban shopping area with parallel parking.

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almeda is not cool, go see for yourself.

dream

I wholeheartedly agree with Timmy.

Any more than a few years ago and Washington Avenue would have looked like Almeda's blue-collar cousin. Development was pretty fierce in that area because land values were lower, not being near big parks, museums, or much else of cultural or aesthetic value. Almeda, in contrast, has everything going for it, including the existing raw demographics. If you don't believe me, have dinner at Spanish Village; one look at the parking lot will prove my point.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I wish people would understand that many people who purchase highrise condo units don't necessarily live in them. Many of them are purchased as investment property (not to resale, but to rent).

This is why you can sell apartment to condo conversion units. The units still remain apartments, it just an outside invester bought the unit. The building is still managed by a separate company that can handle processing the monthly rent and handling repairs. This is very common.

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Any more than a few years ago and Washington Avenue would have looked like Almeda's blue-collar cousin. Development was pretty fierce in that area because land values were lower, not being near big parks, museums, or much else of cultural or aesthetic value. Almeda, in contrast, has everything going for it, including the existing raw demographics. If you don't believe me, have dinner at Spanish Village; one look at the parking lot will prove my point.

I go to Spanish Village all the time. What does my 10 yr old Chevy S10 pickup have to do with anything?

Edited by musicman
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I go to Spanish Village all the time. What does my 10 yr old Chevy S10 pickup have to do with anything?

I was referring to the many nice cars (BMW, Mercedes, etc.) parked in the same lot as our comparatively-crappy ones.

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I was referring to the many nice cars (BMW, Mercedes, etc.) parked in the same lot as our comparatively-crappy ones.

There are many good cars there but Spanish Village tends to have a longtime crowd. I remember going there as a kid and then kind of returned during my college days. I bet if you asked, a lot of them wouldn't be from the area. a when me and a group of friends go, we're all from either heights/east side/west u.

It's kind of like kanomwan, people will drive there even though neighborhood isn't considered premier.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Kinkaid,

They may be experienced, but in my opinion they have grossly overestimated the depths of the Houston condo market. Remember that every project that flopped had one thing in common - too many units. The succesful developers here build small, small buildings - Randall Davis always builds 65-85 units. Montebello is about 100 units. In 2005, only about 500 condo units sold in all of Houston, including new and old buildings. It would take them 7 - 10 years to sell 400 given that type of absorption. And the location doesn't compare to Cosmo, Montebello or 22 Kirby. It really is still a bit ghetto.

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