A Massive Land Sale off the Houston Ship Channel; Making Over Village Arcade


Photo: David Elizondo via Swamplot Flickr Pool


9 Comment

  • Hey, wouldn’t it be nice if the Village Arcade could be made to look like a trim and nicely detailed theater by MacKie and Kamrath along with some mid-century storefronts housing quirky shops? Oh, wait, that’s what they got rid of to build the Village Arcade…

  • Nothing against Church chicken, but the suburban-style location was starting to look increasingly out of place on Heights. Glad to see something with a bit more character move in.

  • You can’t ‘plan’ to be hip; the very idea of planning is antithetical to the state of hip. But Rice Blvd, Times Blvd, and others in the Village might be ‘hip’ already, in the sense that they were never planned, and developed organically into their current states.

  • It doesn’t make any sense to me that Rice Village should pursue the youth angle. Gen X’ers and up have jobs. Real jobs. Jobs that are appropriate to their age and level of skill, with commensurate salaries. The older the demographic, the more disposable household income, credit, and net wealth they have, the less likely they are to treat a retail store as a showroom for subsequent online purchases, and quite frankly, the more likely they are to live nearby and displace younger and poorer households.

    The property, such as it is, perceived as clean and safe and orderly, is very well positioned to fulfill the requirements of paying customers. An update is all fine and well, but they should be seeking to strengthen their appeal to their existing core customer base rather than to seem to try and chase them off.

  • it really just sounds like they’re going to be re-branding themselves by allowing the stores to take more efforts in promoting their own brand appeal, or i guess basically just re-decorating.
    does anyone seriously think of the rice village area as “eclectic, funky, hodgepodge urban district” in this day and age? they’re referencing highland village as a model for chrissakes, not the westheimer curve. they’re just using buzzwords to hit at their target demographic, childless 30-somethings with tons of disposable income that love to be told how young and hip they are.

  • @TheNiche: Going young works. Old people want to be young, so they buy young. Young people don’t want to be old, so they buy young, too.

  • I thought the “How Moving Texaco from Beaumont to Houston Forever Changed the Course of the Bayou City from the Chronicle’s Bayou City History blog was a great read. Good job JR!

  • I like the sound of change coming to rice village. I’m one of those nearby with kids and income like the Niche references, but I hate shopping at the village because it’s a pain to ride a bike, has huge columns that sometimes force you to walk around them near cars, and the arcade is designed so you have to walk across cars flying in and out of the garage. I hope they address these issues.

  • I shop the Village Arcade about once a week and I *never* use the garages. But I’m also patient enough to circle for a spot out in front of the retailer I’m visiting. I’m not keen on any sort of construction/redo that would clusterf-ck the traffic. It’s a small, niche, shopping center, sure, but it fills the need of the area (hence the regular traffic from the adjacent neighborhoods and Rice) and it’s infinitely more navigable than trying to visit those same stores in the Galleria.

    As for the suggestion that Anthropologie is an “affordable” shopping option — yes, if you’re comparing it to the small independent boutiques that are not actually *in* the Arcade. No if you’re comparing it to the chains already in place.

    Re: Rice Village branding — it was Rice Village many, many years before it was the Village Arcade. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rice_Village