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Niels Esperson Building, Partial Conversion To Multifamily


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  • 3 years later...



Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in the Downtown Tunnels, beneath the Niels and Millie Esperson Buildings, will be the first primary care clinic located in the Tunnels. This will be the second Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Houston’s downtown area. Arch-Con will be renovating the 2,640-square-foot space, which includes a lobby, reception area, two exam rooms, a storage room, IT room, and an employee break room. The clinic will offer regular outpatient services. The location will give people who work west of Main Street easy access to a Kelsey-Seybold provider.

Photo I took on Friday.


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  • 3 months later...

Kelsey-Seybold Clinic opens in downtown Houston tunnels




The Houston-based health care company has opened a new clinic in the downtown tunnel system, located beneath the Niels and Mellie Esperson Buildings. The 3,000-square-foot clinic opened earlier this month. It is located in the Esperson Tunnel at 815 Walker St., suite T-14A.


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  • The title was changed to The Neils Esperson Building

Downtown Esperson Buildings For Sale: Whisper Number – $65 Million





HOUSTON – (Realty News Report) – Contrarian Capital’s historic Esperson Buildings in downtown Houston are expected to draw offers around $65 million in a new effort to sell the buildings, reports Real Estate Alert.


JLL has the listing for the combined 509,000-SF properties.


The property includes the 32-story Niels Esperson Building, built in 1927 at 808 Travis. It has been described as the “only full-blown example of Italian Renaissance architecture in downtown Houston.”


The adjoining 19-story Mellie Esperson Building, 815 Walker, is an Art Deco office tower completed in 1941.


The Esperson buildings, which are tunnel connected, are 66 percent leased. Late last year, it was announced the Martin, Disiere, Jefferson & Wisdom law firm leased 42,000 SF in the Esperson project.


Overall, the Houston office market has its soft spots, but new buildings have been leasing up briskly. The owners of older office buildings respond by spending millions to renovate.

It’s all part of what real estate industry people call the “Flight to Quality.” Corporate tenants, which compete to attract the best employees (or talent), strive to have prime office buildings that have offerings that make outstanding workplaces.


“We continue to see firms that value their employees as assets looking to relocate to new developments to ensure employee satisfaction, allowing these companies to attract and retain top employment talent,” said office leasing expert Chip Colvill of Colvill Office Properties, which leases a number of downtown buildings. “The new developments offer a higher quality environment, greater amenities, more efficient floor plans, better elevatoring, superior parking, etc. causing these new developments to be in high demand,” Colvill said in a recent interview.



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  • The title was changed to Tunnel Re-Do Under The Esperson Building
  • 5 months later...

My old office was in this building, loved the quirks:

- Elevators rang an actual bell when you arrived to your floor

- There was a mail slot that connected all the floors to the lobby level. If you were lucky you would catch some mail whizzing by on its way down.

- Niels Esperson's family crest being mounted everywhere.

- The carved cattle skulls on the stonework on the Travis street entrance.

- They used to do a monthly tour of the copula (show above) and Mellie Esperson's old office. Neils passed away before his eponymous building was completed, and Mellie went blind before her expansion (Walker Street side) was completed. She lived in the building for the rest of her life, there is a set of apartments on the very top floor.

- The building is allegedly haunted by Mellie. Don't really believe in that sort of thing, but also didn't stay late into the night to find out....

Fun memories!!

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  • The title was changed to The Neils Esperson Building, Partial Conversion To Multifamily

"An iconic piece of Houston’s downtown skyline is set to undergo a $50 million makeover as a developer adds residences to a historic commercial building, hopping on an emerging trend of real estate investors reimagining excess office space."


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On 8/23/2022 at 3:34 PM, hindesky said:

Owners of the nearly century-old downtown Esperson building will convert parts of its office space into multifamily units, part of the greater trend of repurposing old office space as tenants flock to newer, highly amenitized buildings. 

52306420626_91efabee88_h.jpgScreen Shot 2022-08-23 at 3.30.57 PM by David, on Flickr

The building at 808 Travis St. was first built in the 1940s, and was the largest office building built during the Great Depression, as well as the first Houston skyscraper to have central air conditioning. The renovations, designed by Gensler, will add multifamily units as well as an amenity space on the 17th floor, available to both residents and office tenants.

Plans for the amenity space call for removing the roof on the northwest corner of the 17th floor to create an outdoor-indoor space, with a rooftop swimming pool, a dog park, a speak-easy, a wellness facility, indoor and outdoor lounge areas, and a space for catered meetings.


They're opening a speak-easy?


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  • The title was changed to Niels Esperson Building, Partial Conversion To Multifamily
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