09/07/16 11:00am

Wabash Feed and Garden Store, 5701 Washington Ave., Houston, 77007

Wabash Feed and Garden Store, 5701 Washington Ave., Houston, 77007

A sign of possible second chances for anyone looking to make a play for the former Wabash Feed & Garden Store building at 5701 Washington Ave: the leasing notice now up out front, shown here as spotted by a reader yesterday. Onion Creek owner Gary Mosley bought the land early this year and announced plans to turn the building into a restaurant and bar called Driftwood once the garden store headed out to its new spot. At that time, the moveout was planned for June; Wabash owner Betty Heacker tells Landan Kuhlman this month that the new location in the former Mechanical Plumbing, Inc. warehouse at 4537 N. Shepherd should finally be ready to go by late October.


Options on Wash Ave
08/22/16 1:30pm

Buffalo Fred's Ice House, 2708 N. Shepherd Dr., Houston Heights, Houston, 77008

Buffalo Fred's Ice House, 2708 N. Shepherd Dr., Houston Heights, Houston, 77008After a month or so on the market at $3.75 million, the asking price on Buffalo Fred’s Ice House has dropped by half a million as of early last week. The 37,500 sq.ft. property, positioned right across the northern boundary of the potentially moistening Heights dry zone at 2708 N. Shepherd Dr., sits a few blocks north of the ongoing culinary redevelopment zone near the recent Fiesta Mart breakup. The HAR sales listing notes that leasing the space is an option (and a matching LoopNet leasing listing has been added for the property in the last few weeks).

The listing claims the early-1980s ice house is now running on a month-to-month lease; the bar building is up for grabs along with the 2,100-sq.-ft. building formerly occupied by Speedy Cycle Lube (on the right hand side, both above and below):


Room to Roam in Houston Heights
08/02/16 3:45pm

Westlake Four, 200 Westlake Park Blvd., HoustonPlease don’t turn around and stare, but suddenly another entire office tower in the Energy Corridor has become available for lease — all 20 floors of it. Any takers?

So far, only one of the 2 extremely available towers appears to qualify as a genuine see-through building — that would be the 22-story completed-but-never-occupied Energy Center Four, at N. Eldridge Pkwy. and I-10, which back in June ConocoPhillips announced it was giving up on moving into but hoped some other company (or 32) would sublease from them. And now from Nancy Sarnoff comes the other dropping shoe: energy company BP, announcing that by early next year it plans to vacate Four Westlake Park, aka WestLake Four, a little more than a mile west along the freeway feeder road, at 200 Westlake Park Blvd. BP has 7 years to go on its lease for that 22-year-old property from New York-based Falcon Real Estate Investment Management.

Photo of Westlake Park Four: Steven Baker

Getting Lonely on the Katy Fwy.
07/27/16 12:45pm

Adkins Architectural Antiques, 3515 Fannin St., Midtown, 77004

Closing Sale Sign at Adkins Architectural Antiques, 3515 Fannin St., Midtown, 77004 A reader noted these notes near the door of the former home of Adkins Architectural Antiques, which had been operating out of the 100-ish-year-old house at 3515 Fannin (at the corner with Berry St.). The shop is rebranding as Adkins Antique Hardware Co. and retreating from the realm of physical architecture to a fully digital storefront. The company’s inventory also looks to be shifting away from bigger items like salvaged doors and windows to focus in on the little things — like knobs, pulls, and hinges, both old and old-looking. Per the new website, you might still be able to get an in-person appointment as the closing sale wraps up.

The property itself was listed for lease on LoopNetabout 2 weeks ago, under its HCAD alter ego of 1103 Berry. The house and its early-1990s warehouse are the only structures on the block, which otherwise serves as parking lot. CBRE’s leasing flier aerial (below) shows the space bathed in green highlighting, in place between the Ensemble Theater, several Houston Community College buildings, that Holman-St.-facing strip center, and the Downtown Pregnancy Help Center (thought the fact that it doesn’t show much progress on the recently-wrapped MATCH building dates the shot):


Out with the Old in Midtown
07/13/16 10:15am

EMPTY HOUSTON OFFICE SPACE HITS 20-YEAR HIGH WITH MORE IN THE PIPELINE 609 Main St., Downtown, Houston, 77002“The damage has been done,” writes Ralph Bivins this morning: although developers in the city have mostly stopped starting new office buildings, the past quarter “was the first time in 21 quarters that Houston had negative absorption, meaning more office space was emptied than filled.” And the office space availability rate, brushing up against 20 percent, is also higher than it has been at any time since 1995; real estate scrutinizer CBRE estimates that the rate could shoot past the 20-year record to 21 percent in 2017 as more sublease space hits the market (and more of the space already under construction, on the order of 4.2 million sq.ft., wraps up). [Realty News Report] Photo of 609 Main construction: Katherine Feser (bottom)

06/22/15 10:30am

Camera Co-Op, 801 Durham Dr., Rice Military, Houston

Camera Co-Op, 801 Durham Dr., Rice Military, Houston

A big for-lease sign has been posted to the door of the building at 801 Durham Dr. in Rice Military. Longtime building tenant Camera Co-Op (see above photo) shut down here at the beginning of last month. The camera-lens mural that surrounded the camera store’s front door has been painted over.

Photos: Stephen J Alexander (door); Camera Co-Op (building)

Houston’s Retail Canon
06/20/14 1:30pm

DON’T BOTHER THE FINE FOLKS AT CAFE JAPON, BUT WOULD YOU LIKE TO LEASE THEIR BUILDING? Cafe Japon, 3915 Kirby Dr., Upper Kirby, HoustonA listing for the 4,000-sq.-ft. restaurant space tucked deep into the space at 3915 Kirby Dr. just north of the Southwest Fwy. appeared last week on LoopNet. “Please do not disturb the tenant,” the listing says, noting that the building is currently occupied month-to-month by “a Japanese restaurant.” That would be longtime sushi purveyor Café Japon. How long might it be until some new-kid-in-town restaurant displaces it? An interloper would have to pay $14,000 per month in addition to a share of property taxes, the listing says. [LoopNet, via Chris Frankel] Photo: LoopNet

05/13/14 12:15pm

WHAT THEY’RE TWEETING ABOUT YOUR LEASE RATES 2502 Dunlavy St., Lower Westheimer, Park, Montrose, HoustonWe now join the Twitter discussion of the potential lease of spaces at 2502 Dunlavy St. just north of Westheimer Rd. in Montrose, currently home to the offices of Eurostone Marble and the Bacchus Mediterranean Winebar and Coffee Shop (both still open), already in progress. [Twitter] Photo: Davis Commercial (PDF)

06/21/13 11:00am

KICKING OUT THE OLDIES ON WESTHEIMER Just a few weeks after a fire took out one resale shop in Montrose, Culturemap reporter Whitney Radley has noticed that another, BJ Oldies and Antiques just a few doors down, is for lease. Radley seems to suspect that this old watch-your-step reliquary is being booted out for yet another new Westheimer restaurant. Whether the foodies are coming won’t be determined until August, though, when antiquarian owner Becky Pieniadz ups and leaves for her new location just down the road at 1726 Westheimer, joining those like-minded retailers next to Empire Café. Still, Pieniadz doesn’t seem thrilled about having to vacate the 8,600-sq.-ft. building where she’s been since 2008 and box all that %&$# up: “The last thing I wanted was to move out of here.” [Culturemap; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Flickr user emilycovey

04/08/13 2:00pm

This relatively gritty Warehouse District warehouse appears to be the subject of some real estate speculation, reports Hair Balls’ Richard Connelly: A website for the Houston Studios building — home to a 10,000-sq.-ft. soundstage with a 30-ft. ceiling for video shoots, rehearsals, and other creative expressions — features renderings that show it as a cleaned-up commercial complex:


03/05/13 10:00am

This corner at Mandell and West Main near Richmond and the Menil Collection has lost another tenant; Sophia bowed out of the freestanding brick building at the end of February. It was back in 2008 when Sophia’s predecessor Café Artiste kept this “closed today” sign posted in the window for an entire month, receiving your questions and comments without betraying a word; Sophia’s sand-bagged sign, spotted by a Swamplot reader at the end of last week, doesn’t appear to have inspired the same level of community feedback just yet.

Photos: Jack McBride (Sophia); Flickr user DrPantzo [license]

05/17/12 12:01pm

The all-day buffet line for Filipino dishes and Mongolian stir fry just west of the Med Center could be winding down. This standalone building at 2416 W. Holcombe, home to Gold Ribbon Bake Shop and Restaurant since the mid-nineties, has been listed for lease by Pipeline Realty. Located in the shadows of a recently completed storage facility, the property shares a back parking lot with an adjacent medical office. There are 48 parking spaces by day and another 40 after office hours. Interestingly, a sign on the door says the place is hiring, seeking new hires who speak English and Tagalog.

Photo: Pipeline Realty

09/28/11 1:40pm

The new owners of the Heights building at the corner of 19th St. and Ashland that for 61 years housed the Harold’s in the Heights men’s clothing store have wasted no time in advertising the modern structure for lease or “redevelopment.” The Chronicle‘s David Kaplan reports that a partnership led by local development firm Braun Enterprises bought the property from the family of Harold Wiesenthal last week; a flyer for the 13,600-sq.-ft. property, which comes with a parking lot in back, hawks restaurant or retail space in chunks as small as 1,750 sq. ft. The glass-front building includes a 3,000-sq.-ft. second-story office space. Harold’s closed its doors for good in August.

Photo: Braun Enterprises

06/08/11 11:36am

Noting the new handcrafted plywood “for sale or lease” signs now hanging on White Oak in front of King Biscuit Patio Cafe, a few Swamplot readers have written in to tell us that it looks like the Woodland Heights restaurant’s promised comeback has been called off before it even started. Restaurant guide b4-u-eat announced last month that building owner Pat Quinn would be teaming up with former Fitzgerald’s owner Sara Fitzgerald to reopen the restaurant. One reader tells Swamplot that remodeling work came to a halt 2 weeks ago, and that Fitzgerald spent all of last Thursday moving out of the building. The signs — one of them advertising the availability of owner financing — were posted over the weekend.

Photos: Swamplot inbox

08/03/10 3:43pm

Bringing you the happening sounds of the vacant former Morse Wholesale Paper Co. on the east side — live, via YouTube!

Can’t get enough of this sort of thing? More Industrial: