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Even though I can walk, I drove there this morning to do some shopping (unsure of how much I'd be lugging back home). The underground garage is pretty cool. There's a light above every space that is green when the space is empty and red when it's occupied. Really easy to visually locate a spot an go for it. Definitely something that should catch on elsewhere.

 

DFW Airport has that. Very helpful.

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Crane going up this weekend according to the FAA filing.  

Well since these models have been revealed, I guess I can probably post the renderings...

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The Verizon 2 story super-store opened up at BLVD Place yesterday fyi...lots of gadgets besides the usual phones and accessories...(its on the south east facing end of the Whole Foods portion along Post Oak Blvd)

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Was there yesterday and visited the Verizon destination store and the Whole Foods bar/brewery.  Fresh brewed makes a big difference.  We need more of that here. 

 

Nice having the parking under the store.  A neat feature of the underground parking is that they have colored lights hanging over each space so you can see from a distance which spaces are open and which spaces are filled.

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it's interesting how new designs are utilizing passive cooling features like brise soleil; yet 800 bell will be stripped of its very modern (some would say timeless) fins.  the picture above is a beautiful building that takes its cue from a mid century design aesthetic.  as a city, we seem to be ok with tearing down existing mid century structures but love new buildings with similar features.

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it's interesting how new designs are utilizing passive cooling features like brise soleil; yet 800 bell will be stripped of its very modern (some would say timeless) fins. the picture above is a beautiful building that takes its cue from a mid century design aesthetic. as a city, we seem to be ok with tearing down existing mid century structures but love new buildings with similar features.

Thank you. This style has been redone for a few years now (modernized), yet the originals get torn down. If current architecture can appreciate it, why aren't the classics be as beloved? I know this may only be a Houston problem. You don't see One Chase Manhattan being recladded...

Edit: I know it's a different style but I guess they did try to repaint the Willis Tower.

Edited by Montrose1100
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There was a proposal a few years back about painting it a silver color, changing out the glass to a similar silver, and adding wind turbines/making it more energy efficient.

http://www.sustainable-chicago.com/2011/06/09/willis-tower-takes-solar-windows-to-new-heights/

 

You know when I read this I could have sworn it was about the Williams Tower and not the Willis Tower. I need new glasses.

Still it would be quite sad if they went through with it and changed the look of the building. 

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According to this article, of the buildings 355 units a third of them have been leased out. The article also contains some some pictures of the units.

http://www.bizjournals.com/houston/news/2015/01/09/sneak-peek-inside-hanover-post-oak-apartment-tower.html

It looks pretty nice! I shop at that Whole Foods all the time now - wish I could live there :P Edited by alternativemike
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I've heard that the new Whole Foods flagship store isn't doing as well as expected and that they have even gone as far as warning employees about possible cuts. Can anybody substantiate or add to this? Geez, it's only been open a little over 2 months.

 

I can attest to that! I live and work on post oak, so I go there daily and at different hours (open for breakfast, midday for lunch and night after work or just before close to grab something quick) etc and there are never more than 1 to 4 checkout lanes open and its always dead compared to any other store I have or do go to. honestly I am shocked but maybe we are more of a Randall's and HEB community than I thought! wow (for the record I love my whole foods!)

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Possibly Barracuda. Hopefully WF isn't hurting so bad they don't last until the other 2 residential towers come to BLVD Place, and more people move into the current Hanover tower. Too bad work isn't happening (yet) on the Uptown BRT line. That would bring more people to the area

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Unless you work within walking distance, why would anyone shop there? 

 

Traffic is terrible at all hours of the day and there's garage parking? No thank you.

 

It's only going to get worse when the Whole Foods on Voss opens in the former Randall's space. 

 

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tony food store, located upon one of the more toniest districts in houston... not doing well financially?  something's amiss...

 

If you live on the other side of 610 (River Oaks/Afton Oaks), chances are you'll shop at the WF on Kirby or Waugh.

 

If you live in Southampton/West U/Bellaire, you're likely to shop at the Kirby or Bellaire locations

 

If you live in Memorial, Briargrove, or Western Tanglewood, the Woodway store (soon to be replaced by Voss location) is a better bet than dealing with Galleria area hassles. 

 

The only way this store was going to draw folks was to go BIG. That was the original plan. Then they scaled back. The new store doesn't offer enough to make people want to grocery shop there. It simply isn't worth the hassle. I was curious to try it out but 100% of the reviews were along the lines of "it looks pretty cool but there's no way that could become my go-to grocery store." My curiosity died within a week and I likely will never step foot in that store. 

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I don't get how the parking garage is a negative.... Similarly to the flagship whole foods in Austin, the garage makes parking infinitely more convenient. It's dedicated to the store, it's covered and climate controlled, it has parking space indicators and you're rarely more than 100' from the entrance.

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I don't get how the parking garage is a negative.... Similarly to the flagship whole foods in Austin, the garage makes parking infinitely more convenient. It's dedicated to the store, it's covered and climate controlled, it has parking space indicators and you're rarely more than 100' from the entrance.

I hear you...sometimes it seems like there's a special constitutional amendment for Houstonians protecting their rights to surface parking. And no liberal company from Austin can take that away from us!!!

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Um, the Flagship Austin store is a destination. It's 25,000 square feet larger than the BLVD Place store. It's also located on downtown Austin's street grid making it the go-to store for the thousands of folks who live just blocks away and for the tens of thousands who work and play there daily. 

 

This isn't about Houstonians not wanting to park in garages; it's about Houstonians having the option to avoid the hassles of Galleria area traffic and doing so. 

 

I'll say it again, this store's only chance was to go-big. That was the original plan. It was scaled back in size drastically making it essentially the same as several other Whole Foods Markets located nearby that aren't so intimidating. 

 

 

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I think even something on the scale and glitz of the flagship store in Austin would fail in this location - this was a real head-scratcher to me from the very beginning.  There is no market for this type of store here, at least not right now, and the nearby WF's serve to only cannibalize what little market this thing has... that said, I have no doubt that dropping this store in the Waugh location and it'd be a huge success.  I fear this WF will be gone in 12 months unless the foot traffic in the overall BLVD place development picks up exponentially, like on the scale of City Centre.

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I guess if WF closes a much smaller Trader Joes can move in, and use the rest of the space for other shops to make BLVD place more of the retail destination it was originally planned to be. It seems to be becoming more obvious that this area is not the best location for a major grocer. Post Oak isn't residential enough for something that big. As others have pointed out, this WF is bookended by other WFs to the east and west. Not to mention there's a Target half a mile down San Felipe, across 610 that sells most of your typical groceries, for residents of Highland Creek District and River/Afton Oaks. And a brand new HEB Plus opening up a mile down San Felipe to the west of WF Post Oak, to serve the people who live in the more residential parts of "Uptown".

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I guess if WF closes a much smaller Trader Joes can move in, and use the rest of the space for other shops to make BLVD place more of the retail destination it was originally planned to be. It seems to be becoming more obvious that this area is not the best location for a major grocer. Post Oak isn't residential enough for something that big. As others have pointed out, this WF is bookended by other WFs to the east and west. Not to mention there's a Target half a mile down San Felipe, across 610 that sells most of your typical groceries, for residents of Highland Creek District and River/Afton Oaks. And a brand new HEB Plus opening up a mile down San Felipe to the west of WF Post Oak, to serve the people who live in the more residential parts of "Uptown".

I think the recession is to blame. Blvd Place was supposed to hold on to Hermes, have a +700ft Ritz Carlton, and probably trying to draw in the retaiers River Oaks District is now boasting. It's still a nice project but far from its original glory. ROD also suffered the same fate but it didn't turn out to be the nicest strip center in the city (like Blvd Place).

Edit: I don't know if a trader joes would do well here. It's a less expensive WF.

Edited by Montrose1100
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Yeah the recession definitely messed things up. RODs success drawing in all the big name tenants isn't helping..

It's not so much that a Trader Joes is a less expensive whole foods (of course that trendy factor is part of the allure), it's that their stores are 10-15,000 sq ft, vs like 80,000 or w/e WFs is. There obviously don't seem to be enough people to sustain an 80,000 sq ft grocery store, but maybe one substatially smaller could work.

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I'll say it again, this store's only chance was to go-big. That was the original plan. It was scaled back in size drastically making it essentially the same as several other Whole Foods Markets located nearby that aren't so intimidating.

Not only that but the original master plan of the whole complex became smaller and very disjointed. And to me, disjointed is the way it appears today. I mean a very sleek looking grocery store here, then a nice but rather random high rise next door (is it, is it not part of the center) and a smaller random strip across a vast empty lot. There's a severe lack of connectivity. The developer probably would have been better off building the majority of the complex all at once, much like River Oaks District is doing. High rise residential towers may help to bring in some much needed pedestrian retail traffic but without cohesion (like the Hanover Tower), the center as a whole will suffer. If the once proposed (probably now dead) Apache Tower(s) were to have been built without integration into the complex as I last saw on the master plan, then I'm glad those tower(s) won't be built. This complex could have been similar to City Centre especially being at such a prime intersection, something that ROD lacks IMO.

Edited by intencity77
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I'm sure once the 7+ residential highrises planned along Post Oak are built the store will have a larger customer base.

The residential buildings planned for Uptown Park (not sure how many residences that will be once it's redeveloped and built out), Astoria, The Bellfoire, the 40 story highrise planned across San Felipe from Whole Foods, the 2 other residential highrises planned for BLVD place besides the Hanover tower which isn't at full capacity, the multifamily highrise planned for Ambassador Way & S. Post Oak Ln, the Gables high rise planned next to the BBVA building, the Galleria residential tower.

Just give it some time, I'm sure the future urban dwellers of these towers will shop at the store and keep it packed, eventually.

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