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River Oaks Shopping Center

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Is this guy b.s. or what? I haven't heard anything about it:

"Dudes and Ladies,

I was very upset when I heard from a business owner in River Oaks Plaza that later this year, early next, they are getting rid of the theater to put in a 30 story high-rise.

word is, they are axing black eyed pea too, for a multi-level parking garage."

You can read the rest here: http://members.boardhost.com/hands_up/msg/1151627265.html

Anyone know anything?

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If I remember correctly, River Oaks Theatre and Black Eyed Pea are on opposite sides of W. Gray. Wouldn't make a lot of sense to put the garage across a busy street from the residences. Given the phenomonal rents garnered by Weingarten for this 75 year old property, I'd be surprised if they would gut it in that manner.

But, stranger things have happened.

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I would protest this with all my heart. The River Oaks theatre is so old and beautiful and truely a piece of history. Not only the theatre, but the entire shopping center! It's the second oldest in the world! (I think). But I won't start crying just yet, it's only a rumor. I doubt a high-rise would go up so easily without River Oaks NIMBY's, and everyone who loves the strip center.

As Redscare said, the Theatre & Black Eyed Peas are on complete opposite sides of West Gray.

1690pqd.jpg

That would be weird for them to put a highrise in that spot, instead of further down westgray. And (as said before) very strange to put the parking garage on the black eyed peas spot...

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Dudes and ladies,

This sounds sooo bogus.

I mean come on - someone is going to plop a 30 story condo in the middle of a strip center? Yeah, right.

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Is this guy b.s. or what? I haven't heard anything about it:

"Dudes and Ladies,

I was very upset when I heard from a business owner in River Oaks Plaza that later this year, early next, they are getting rid of the theater to put in a 30 story high-rise.

word is, they are axing black eyed pea too, for a multi-level parking garage."

You can read the rest here: http://members.boardhost.com/hands_up/msg/1151627265.html

Anyone know anything?

I have just been told that this is true and a Crate and Barrel will go where Jos A. Banks is now. Pretty reliable source. Time to leave . . .

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I have just been told that this is true and a Crate and Barrel will go where Jos A. Banks is now. Pretty reliable source. Time to leave . . .

I can believe the Crate and Barrel rumors but a 30 story condo-and is the garage intended for the "new" condo or is it just there for the Sunglass Hut? :wacko:

B)

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Considering we have one crate and barrel in all of houston, i don't know if i believe there would be a need for another one that is 5 miles from the one in highland village.

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I can believe the Crate and Barrel rumors but a 30 story condo-and is the garage intended for the "new" condo or is it just there for the Sunglass Hut? :wacko:

B)

Are they gonna close the Crate and Barrel on Westhiemer ? This makes no sense. I don't think the area could support 2 C&Bs that close.

Edited by TJones

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I would protest this with all my heart. The River Oaks theatre is so old and beautiful and truely a piece of history. Not only the theatre, but the entire shopping center! It's the second oldest in the world! (I think). But I won't start crying just yet, it's only a rumor. I doubt a high-rise would go up so easily without River Oaks NIMBY's, and everyone who loves the strip center.

As Redscare said, the Theatre & Black Eyed Peas are on complete opposite sides of West Gray.

That would be weird for them to put a highrise in that spot, instead of further down westgray. And (as said before) very strange to put the parking garage on the black eyed peas spot...

This seems odd to me as well. I believe Weingarten owns the entire River Oaks Shopping Area. This includes the Black Eye Pea, The Theatre and extends all the way to the Kroger center. They are not in the condo development game at all. I had heard rumors of the enitre center where the Black Eye Pea being demolished and a new center going up in its place, but I would be amazed if this Condo plan is for real. I guess Weingarten could sell the area to a condo developer, but this seems remote at best.

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I was told that the land where the theater sits is owned by Sears and Weingarten only manages it.

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the river oaks center is perfect as it is. i will be completely pissed if they lose the theater. no more kissey kissey at marfrelas. a houston landmark will be erased. damn, you real estate people! ;)

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While I don't think it's true, I wouldn't put it in the fantasy section yet, but it could be possible if they find a bigger footprint. The theater doesn't have a big enough of a "footprint" to put one there. If anything, I would have to agree it would be further down on Gray.

It would be interesting if it was done, though. You'd have a built-in nightlife for people liveing in the hirise.

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Everything west of Epicure will go. Mafreless is east.

Marfreless shares at least one wall with the theatre if I recall correctly (been at least a year since I've been there). Doesnt that put it in harms way?

(It could only have been cooler if it had no name)

Edited by Lowbrow

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I wouldn't get my undies in a bundle over the word of a couple of people with very low post counts. Also, anyone who starts an announcement with "Dudes and ladies" is circumspect in my book.

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Everything west of Epicure will go. Mafreless is east.

It is spelled "Marfreless"-not "Mafreless" and it occupies space in the same building the theatre is in.

Now what's going where again?

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I just call it "Marf's" hasn't been the same since they "brightened" it up a bit.

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I have heard that Black Eyed Pea and that entire strip on the North side is going to be a Barnes and Noble bookstore.

I have heard the exact same... and have total faith in my source. The question of the high-rise condo project on the theater site brought on a hearty chuckle from that same source.... :lol:

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Isn't the BookStop on Alabama/Sheperd technically a Barnes & Noble as well? Wouldn't a new Barnes & Noble cut into the business at Bookstop? What would happen with the existing retailers at that location where the B&N is going to go? Last time I was in town I noticed quite a few vacancies in the River Oaks Shopping Center. Maybe some of those retailers can relocate further up the street. The former Birraporetti's space under Sherlock's has been vacant for such a long time, anything new coming into the area?

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the bookstop on shepherd is owned by barnes and noble.

river oaks is very much still in business as a theater

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Yes it is still open, I go to see movies there all the time including recently:

Capote

Brokeback Mountain

Keeping up with the Steins

An Inconvenient Truth

I love this theatre, especially the bar upstairs. If the teardown rumor is true, I will personally chain myself to the front door in the front of the bulldozer.

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i believe the idea being tossed around isn't a teardown, but a reuse.

So i guess you might lose your theatre, without losing the theatre.

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That is probably the BEST idea anyone has ever had.

Actually build a highrise next to the one thing that every highrise needs, a close pedestrian friendly grocery store 2 blocks away.

All the other highrises in uptown and downtown can't claim this.

Good for them, we can always get another theatre, but this will really impact the shopping center economically and give it a longer activity time.

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That is probably the BEST idea anyone has ever had.

Actually build a highrise next to the one thing that every highrise needs, a close pedestrian friendly grocery store 2 blocks away.

All the other highrises in uptown and downtown can't claim this.

Good for them, we can always get another theatre, but this will really impact the shopping center economically and give it a longer activity time.

"...longer activity time"? Than it already has? I think you'll find alot of opposition to destroying one of the last historic movie houses left in Houston.

But then this IS Houston. :angry2:

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I think you'll find alot of opposition to destroying one of the last historic movie houses left in Houston.

Stadium Seating, THX sound systems, DLP projectors, that is the future.

That and home theatre.

River Oaks Theatre belongs in a small town, not houston and especially not in such a great location.

Maybe they can re-invent it into the property.

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:o

um no, not like that one -

we still have the Angelika and Landmark.

Don't cry just yet.

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:o

we still have the Angelika and Landmark.

Don't cry just yet.

it's not only the type of movie, but the locale...

we'll always have access to another homogenized bayou place or greenway plaza basement (or amc studio 876427689437), but not a river oaks theater...

Edited by sevfiv

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it's not only the type of movie, but the locale...

we'll always have access to another homogenized bayou place or greenway plaza basement (or amc studio 876427689437), but not a river oaks theater...

I may just be old fashioned or i just don't watch the kind of movies that require all the special sound equipment nor do i need to sit in a lazyboy to watch a movie.

the river oaks is perfectly fine for me.

i always have a good time window shopping, grabbing a bite to eat next door, and then seeing a movie at the river oaks.

Edited by gnu

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the river oaks is perfectly fine for me.

Something obviously is wrong then, because not enough people are supporting this theatre and are going to AMC, Edwards, and Cinemark for their needs.

I have been to the ROT (River Oaks Theatre, no pun intended) and it is usually empty.

Edited by Pumapayam

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Something obviously is wrong then, because not enough people are supporting this theatre and are going to AMC, Edwards, and Cinemark for their needs.

I have been to the ROT (River Oaks Theatre, no pun intended) and it is usually empty.

I guess you are going to the weekday matinee or something because i would say most of the time when i go it is 70% full maybe and i usually have to wait in a longish line to get tickets.

this would be typical for a fri or sat evening at either a 7 or 9-ish movie.

i cannot tell you the last time i went to a megaplex to see a movie. but i have been to the river oaks, greenway, and the angelika in the past year with the majority of trips to the river oaks.

Edited by gnu

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i would say most of the time when i go it is 70% full

Only when I went to see BB Mountain was it busy. All other times, at night, I could pass gas and not have a anyone complain! :lol: (this is just an exaggeration, I don't do that in public!)

Edited by Pumapayam

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I love this theatre, especially the bar upstairs. If the teardown rumor is true, I will personally chain myself to the front door in the front of the bulldozer.

I'd be right there too. It's a great old theatre. My only complaint is with the two upstairs screens in what used to be the main theatre's balcony. My long legs only fit in about three or four seats in the upstairs theatres. But other than that, it's a great place, and it always seems busy.

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I don't necessarily think it should be torn down, but some updates would be nice. I saw motorcyle diaries there last year and it was really uncomfortable to sit in there and I'm not a big person. It felt like it was a bunch of folding chairs while staring at a big screen TV from the 80's. Slight exagerration obviously, but I like the way it looks on the outside, just would like that if people care about it so much, it should be in better condition and modernized some. They tend to get indie movies there first, so I would like it to be a better experience.

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Stadium Seating, THX sound systems, DLP projectors, that is the future.

That and home theatre.

River Oaks Theatre belongs in a small town, not houston and especially not in such a great location.

Maybe they can re-invent it into the property.

Pumapayam, you're starting to upset me with the things you say.

The people who enjoy going to the River Oaks Theater could care less about its lack of Stadium Seating, its lack of THX sound system, and its lack of DLP projectors. Too much technology is not always a good thing, and it detracts from the theater's intention, which is to be an alternative to the megaplexes and their crappy movies. I'm not saying every movie they show is good, but it at least keeps its focus on the idea of "cinema" rather than gimmicks.

Belongs in a small town? How long have you lived in Houston? It fits perfectly in that location. You say it "doesn't belong in such a great location"?! The theater is part of what makes the location so great. I'm sorry if I sound rude, but unless you're a native Houstonian, you just wouldn't understand. Back in the 1980s/1990s, anyone who even brought up the idea of destroying the theater would be criticized. I guess in today's Houston, with all its non-Houstonian residents all over the city, something truly great and locally significant can be criticized because it's not modern enough. It's an historic landmark, and people enjoy it for what it is. It's something you can never re-create again; definitely of the last remnants of evidence of civic life in Houston. It's not like an AMC 30 that you can just build anywhere, regardless of the city or area. It would be an insult to re-invent it into whatever high-rise property is built in that space. I'm hoping the rumors are not true, and if they are, that the project is met with much resistance. First Astroworld, then Cactus Music, now this? People need to stand up for their city.

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In fact, there was a fairly generic first-run multiplex just down the street on Gray in the late 80's/early 90's. It got torn down and redeveloped. I remember very well back in the early 80's when the River Oaks used to show daily double features of classic movies. Once in a while they'd have a week-long run of a foreign or indie movie, but usually it was double features, often with some common theme, like Casablanca and Key Largo, or 2001 and Silent Running. They would publish a free tabloid-style schedule every month. That's where I saw my first Hitchcock movies, among others

I can't really express well enough how cool this was. Being able to see these movies in a theatre, with popcorn and a big screen, was amazing, and something I now sorely miss. And the cost of admission, corrected for inflation, was about what a movie rental is now.

Marty

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The original message is from the Hands Up Houston message board which is basically a kids/young adult message board. I doubt it has validity. The only thing I would take as legit from that board is whether or not Dashboard Confessional, Sufjan Stevens or Death Cab For Cutie was coming to town.

Edited by groovehouse

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Guest danax

I'm stunned, angry and speechless, but not too surprised.

Come on, Houston, punch me again, I'm getting used to it now.

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Well, well, well... I stand corrected!! My apologies to the kids over at the Hands Up Houston message board! They scooped us!

Historic theater could soon fade into history (link to Chron.com}

that is a total shame!

while I'm not really attached to the the theater at w. Grey, I would like for it to remain in business, surely they can find a way to alter any designs they have to accomdate the theater, as it would make a great plus if they have residential units there.

As far as the Bookstop on Shepherd, THAT definately has to be saved, every person that I introduce people to that location are stunned and in awe of the work that went into it and prefer going to THAT bookstop as opposed to the other cookie cutter locations.

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well, i DO know that there will be a significant amount of folks raising HELL - weingarten doesn't want the same a**hole status that spire realty earned, does it?

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Well I apologize for saying the original rumor was bogus.

This is really sad if it is true. What is really annoying is Weingarten refusing to return phone calls or meet with the GHPA. Arrogant jerks. If you want to write and complain, here's the contact info:

Brook E. Wootton

Director/Investor Relations and Corporate Communications

Phone: 713-866-6050

Toll-free 800-298-9974

Electronic Mail Address: ir@weingarten.com

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certainly they could come up with a plan utilizing parking space, say behind la griglia, to build a multi level parking garage with several floors of condos above. it would add needed parking space to the center and add a residential element.

should our battle cry be "REMEMBER THE BELLAIRE!!!"? guess that's too obscure for most.

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All the money Wiengartens made and now this?

Do these "Houstonians" still have any pull in their company?

Maybe Lea Fastow (Faust) can help.

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should our battle cry be "REMEMBER THE BELLAIRE!!!"? guess that's too obscure for most.

You could also say "Remember the Village Theater!" Weingarten razed that one, too -- to make way for the Rice Village mall that now houses Banana Republic and Victoria's Secret.

In a nod to history, the company erected a movie-style Village Theater sign and a plaque in the parking lot. (I've heard that the sign wasn't even original to the Village Theater. Does anyone know for sure?)

In Houston, even a lame reference to the past passes for preservation.

****

Full disclosure: I'm the Chronicle reporter who wrote that depressing story.

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