09/01/16 1:30pm

CROSSWALKS GIVE RED LIGHT WALKERS THE FINGER IN MIDTOWN, EASTWOOD Holman at San Jacinto streets, Midtown, Houston, 77004The DON’T WALK hand at the corner of Holman and San Jacinto streets has been straightened out after a post-paint spree of flipping the bird to pedestrians, Steve Romo reports this week. The offending intersection is home to a number of HCC buildings and the parking lot behind recently departed Adkins Architectural Antiques, as well as a retail strip;  Romo notes that his news team tracked down at least one other similarly altered sign over at the intersection of S. Lockwood Dr. and Leland St., near the Learn & Grow Academy daycare and Houston Fire Station 18.  The city tells Romo it’s not the first time this kind of paint job has shown up around town (nor is it a uniquely Houston occurrence), and that the graffiti is a quick fix but diverts city resources, adding that folks should let 311 know if any more intersection signals are rude to them. [ABC13] Photo of signal at Holman and San Jacinto streets: Kate Erin C.

08/19/16 11:30am

4411 Dallas St., Eastwood, Houston, 77023

Now on the market for $2.5 million: the triangular Telephone Rd. block bounded by Dallas and Eastwood streets, complete with the still-well-labeled former complex of the storied Church of the Redeemer. The church’s congregation moved out of the literally crumbling structures in 2011 after receiving some $5-to-7-million estimates on bringing them up to minimum habitability standards. The property was later bought by Dominion Church International, which wrangled a new certificate of occupancy for the site in early 2014.

The current listing shows that the crown of T-mobile relay equipment atop the church’s bell tower appears to still be in place — county records show a rooftop lease agreement for the building was renewed for another 50 years in mid-2014:


Salvation or Salvage?
06/21/16 11:30am

Lovett leasing flier for Cullen St. Retail, Cullen at I-45, Eastwood, Houston, 77003

Lovett has been dropping a few crumbs regarding the selection of restaurants and shops that will fringe the parking lot of the retail development planned for the former Fingers Furniture warehouse site on Cullen Blvd., across I-45 from the University of Houston’s main campus. No anchor tenant for the site has officially named (though talk of Walmart has made its way to several tipsters in the Eastwood Civic Association this spring, along with assurances that the marker memorializing the former site of Buffalo Stadium’s home plate will likely be preserved).

A site plan from December (shown above, with north angled roughly toward the top right corner) shows several pad sites along the feeder road marked up as QSR (presumably Quick Service Restaurant). A later sketch now up on Lovett’s website as well adds more clues, however — including  a cryptic label on what could be the first Starbucks to venture into the East End:


Cullen at I-45
04/12/16 1:00pm

Former Macy's Outlet Center, 4500 Gulf Fwy., Eastwood, Houston, 77023

Former Macy's Outlet Center, 4500 Gulf Fwy., Eastwood, Houston, 77023A running reader caught sign of the leasing notice currently up at the former Macy’s outlet store just north of I-45 and S. Lockwood Dr. along Munger St. The clearance center operations moved out several years ago to the current location at Highway 6 and Westheimer Rd. (as noted by signage tacked to the S. Lockwood storefront’s doors, still redirecting missed-the-memo potential customers). The company’s distribution warehouse complex next door is still in action (and, per the same set of signage, handling customer pickup).

Lovett Commercial is marketing the space; its own (larger) signage currently refers to the property as East End Central. The flier on the company’s website marketing the property (dated January 2014)show some proposed pad sites and some potential tenants; the flier also refers to the property only as 4500 Gulf Freeway or as South Lockwood Retail:


Southern Eastwood
01/06/16 11:30am

Invasion Ice House, 823 Dumble St., Eastwood, Houston, 77023A little green man in a flying saucer heralds the looming takeover of the former Los Amigos space at 823 Dumble St. (at the corner with McKinney, a few blocks west of S. Lockwood Dr.). Los Amigos is prepping to be reborn as Invasion Ice House — a tipster tells Swamplot that the new owner wants to make the space into the “cool neighborhood hangout” that the area “desperately needs”. The 1,300-sq.-ft. building, formerly violet (and even-more-formerly lemon-yellow), has been repainted a dusty blue behind the sci-fi mural now adorning the front.

Invasion manager Monique Ramos applied for a TABC beer and wine license last month; a closer look at the signs posted on the space indicates that the interplanetary colonists will bring along Tex-Mex provender in the form of the Tako Box food truck.

Photo of 823 Dumble St.: Swamplot inbox


Cosmic Facelifts
01/27/15 5:00pm



Deep porches on an updated 1915 Eastwood home listed for lease look toward a residential street lined with similarly neighborly vantage points, all shaded by huge palm trees and live oaks. Behind the home run train tracks — and a tract promised for Lovett Commercial’s Harrisburg Crossing, a mix of retail and office space fronting Harrisburg Blvd. between Oakhurst and Lockwood streets. That juxtaposition also puts the rental home around the block from Metro Rail’s Green Line station at Lockwood.


Fore and Aft
12/11/14 3:30pm


Here is the lot plan for University Grove, a 39-lot single-family development to go in at the corner of Leeland St. and Cullen Blvd., across the Gulf Freeway from UH, just across the street from Mandola’s Deli, right behind the Polk St. Kroger and hard by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railway line.

Landowner Leeland Baking Company, Inc. is listed as a subsidiary of Flowers Foods Inc., the Thomasville, GA-based mega-bakery behind such brands as Nature’s Own, Whitewheat, Wonder Bread, Cobblestone Mill, and Tastykake.


The Yeast End
09/24/14 3:00pm



Garden trumps garage in this 1930 cottage in the Lawndale neighborhood of Greater Eastwood. The home, renovated in 1990 and updated inside more recently, looks to have lengthened its footprint at some point on the midblock lot. A tad of leftover lawn behind the house (top) extends into a stub of land by the parking area. In the next block, the street dead ends at the railroad tracks that cross Lawndale St. and Telephone Rd. Listed earlier this month, the home bears an asking price of $349,900.


Lawn, but no Dale
08/08/14 2:46pm



When renovated by a previous owner in 2007, a 1936 Craftsman-like home in Eastwood modernized but also played up period details. A subtle color wash in pastel shades (above) adds to the pastoral mojo, though house and driveway sit behind an iron fence at the front lot line. Earlier this week, the property popped up on the market with a $345,000 asking price. Its location is 3 lots north of S. Lockwood Dr. and 3 blocks from the Eastwood/Lockwood stop on Metro’s coming East End line.


Done Over
05/27/14 4:45pm



Since its purchase in 2010 for $65,000, an Eastwood property has gained what is described as — in the most recent of its 3 separate listings so far this year — a 2011 “Craftsman-inspired” home. The current listing has a $519,000 asking price. That’s down from the $555,000 mentioned in its March through April 2014 market debut and its weeklong appearance in early May at $529,999.


With All the Trimmings
05/01/14 2:15pm



Over in Eastwood, a corner 1940 property that sold in the middle of last month has reappeared on the market. The fresh listing last week, pitched as a duplex or single-family home, has an asking price of $415,000. The seller bought it in April for $334,901.


More Pease, Please
12/16/13 2:15pm

New Garden Beds, Lantrip Elementary School, 100 Telephone Rd., Eastwood, Houston

Parents and students connected to Eastwood’s Lantrip Elementary School are showing off a new mulch-covered running track, separate wheelchair-ready path, and set of 12 raised garden beds on a decomposed-granite pad built this fall by volunteers from materials purchased with a $20,000 grant the school won in July. The garden-bed installation, pictured above in front of an older campus greenhouse, will also serve as an outdoor classroom for the school at the northern reaches of Telephone Rd. Also newly installed: a set of 20 new fruit trees with irrigation equipment sent by the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation, in addition to the earlier grant from Keep America Beautiful and the Lowe’s Foundation.


An East End Greenbelt