- 902 Marshall St. [HAR]
COMMENT OF THE DAY: MISPLACING THE AUDUBON PLACES “TIL that Audubon Place (the street in 77006) is not in Audubon Place (the subdivision in 77027). The whole time I was scouring the neighborhoods in and around Westmoreland for a house, I thought the adjoining neighborhood was called Audubon Place. My bad; it’s Montrose. The original. I was misled by the green historical sign at the W. Alabama end of the block.” [GoogleMaster, commenting on Daily Demolition Report: Inglourious Buildings] Photo of 804 Harold St.: Audubon Place Association
Greenleaf Gardens appears to be getting ready for some less-communal, more-perennial planting on the corner of Kipling and Stanford streets in Audubon Place. A reader snapped a few photos at the former community garden last week, including a picture of the sign announcing an application for a certificate of appropriateness for new construction in the historic district. That application is in the name of Greg Swedberg of 2Scale Architects, on behalf of Michele Alvarado of Sanctuary Builders, which bought the property last fall after the city decided not to buy the land and turn it into a park.
The paperwork for the certificate includes sketches and and plans for the 2-story duplex in the works for the space, which may need to be revised to something a little more neatly rectangular, based on late-January feedback from the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission. Here’s a view from the corner of Kipling and Stanford, as submitted on January 6th:
The community garden at 803 Kipling St. in Audubon Place listed for sale earlier at the end of last month is set to be purchased by the City of Houston and turned into a neighborhood park, according to its owner. William Winkler tells Swamplot he and the city have settled on a price and he’s signed off on a letter of intent; he says he’s now waiting for a formal purchase contract. The 8,400-sq.-ft. lot at the southwest corner of Kipling and Stanford, known as Greenleaf Gardens since Winkler first built raised beds and leased them out in 2012, was previously the site of a 2-story home that burned in 2008. It’s still listed on MLS for $630,000.
Last week a for-sale sign went up at the 8,400-sq.-ft. vacant lot at the corner of Kipling and Stanford that’s been used for the past several years as an Audubon Place community garden. And there it was on MLS, available for $630K: the former homesite William Winkler had bought in 2012 and parceled out for neighborhood veggie-growing efforts, now offered as “the only lot in the Audubon Place Historic District that’s available to build a new construction home.”
Greenleaf Gardens began operating on the site in May 2012, after Winkler purchasing the lot for $300,000. Subscribers rented out 4-ft.-by-20-ft. raised-bed plots on the property.
Winkler considers the garden operation a success; he says he’s selling only because of a change in his personal financial situation. Several users of the garden have indicated they’d be willing to pay significantly higher annual subscription fees. Earlier this week, Winkler sent out an email indicating he’s open to another option: selling the property to a nonprofit that would keep the garden running.
An expansive deck with pool for physical therapy (top) links a home and its back-of-lot studio apartment at a Montrose compound, which started October as a $795K listing. Recent updates to the 1922 bungalow (above) included new AC, duct work, and wallboard. The studio space was added in 2012. Located east of Stanford St. near Lovett Blvd., the property is within walking — or rolling — distance of many neighborhood restaurants.
The sign has been changed and the green hues have been removed from the mansard-roofed exterior of the former First Stop Food Store at the corner of Stanford and Hawthorne in Audubon Place. That’s where the Montrose Mercantile is set to hold its grand opening this weekend — though the combo espresso bar and mini-mart at 3321 Stanford St.
created by the owner of Washington Ave’s Catalina Coffee has already been open for a couple of weeks. The original Mercantile opened in the Rice Village last fall.
Photos: Montrose Mercantile
A northern branch of Mercantile, the combo espresso bar and mini-mart that opened a few months ago in the Rice Village, will be opening up in the vacant First Stop Food Store spot shown above at the corner of Stanford St. and Hawthorne in Audubon Place, its owner confirmed this week. Mercantile could be described as the upscale version of Washington Ave’s Catalina Coffee (they’re run by the same owner). And that’s exactly what Houstonia‘s Katharine Shilcutt felt free to do: “Catalina Coffee is the brooding, sensitive, bookish older sister, while Mercantile is the peppy younger sister who wears Ralph Lauren and daydreams about horses and joins a sorority in college yet is no less intelligent or passionate than her sibling.” The perky youngster also carries more baked goods, groceries, and gift items on her dainty shelves.
Photo of First Stop Food Mart at 3321 Stanford St.: Swamplot inbox
For almost 2 years after it caught fire in October 2008, the 2-story home at 803 Kipling St. in Audubon Place stood vacant on the property as a burnt skeleton. Now the recent purchaser of the lot that remained after the property was demolished has plans to turn the land into a community garden.
Roving Swamplot photographer Candace Garcia spots a for sale sign up at the Libreria Española on the north side of West Alabama between Stanford and Audubon:
I know the owner/manager was elderly, but watching him in the mornings get his shop ready and opening the gates was really a nice thing to see. I’m hoping he is not ill or deceased. It’s always sad to see small businesses close.
Who said it’s closed?
COMMENT OF THE DAY: THE NEIGHBORHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS “My friend lives in a small Montrose (Audobon Place) apartment complex. He had a pair of pants and a sweatshirt stolen out of the dryer. He called the police AND THEY CAME OUT! For a pair of pants! I didn’t think they came out anymore even for a car break-in. Even more unbelievable is the police actually caught a homeless guy wearing my friends clothes about 20 minutes later and brought him back and made him take the clothes off and give them back.” [Tangyjoe, commenting on The Front Porch Gang]
In order to address the confusion/questions over Montrose neighborhood designations, I dug up the attached map that was put together a few years ago by the Neartown Association, the umbrella organization for the roughly 20 neighborhoods and civic associations that constitute the area known as “The Montrose”. Some of the civic associations, such as Mandell Place, Winlow Place, and Cherryhurst, represent the original legal subdivisions that were established in the 20’s. Others, such as WAMM (Westheimer Alabama Montrose Mulberry Civic Association), were established more recently to help property owners re-establish deed restrictions that had lapsed over the years.
In doing a little research on HCAD, it appears to me that the areas represented by WAMM,
Audubon Place, a portion of Avondale (south of Westheimer?), and all or part of the UST campus covers what was the original Montrose subdivision.
HISTORIC WIN FOR AUDUBON PLACE City council voted last week to designate Audubon Place Houston’s 13th Historic District. The district stretches north of W. Alabama roughly to Hawthorne, between Roseland and Audubon Place. [Guidry News; map (PDF)]
Remember back in July, when the folks from InnerLoopCondos.com sent out a survey about a new development proposed for 819 W. Alabama — the former site of Bistro Vino — and wanted you to help them choose which of six funny costumes the new condo building should wear? The company is now saying it’ll likely build 6 to 8 stories on top of at least 3 parking-garage levels, producing 80 condos priced from $190,000 to $400,000.
Best of all, InnerLoopCondos.com — a subsidiary of Montreal’s Group LSR — plans to break ground . . . in maybe only 18 short months!
What the thing will look like, though . . . is still up to you! “We’re very sensitive to what people are saying on the survey,” InnerLoopCondos.com’s Andre Julien tells the Chronicle‘s Betty Martin. So how are the votes tallying?
The company won’t start planning until the survey had received about 50 responses, the minimum needed to gauge what prospective condo buyers want, Julien said.
What? Fewer than 50 votes!???
Readers, the ballot box is still open. You have six colorful theming choices. Do you need to hear that lecture again about how important your vote is?