And here’s what BHP Billiton Petroleum’s new 30-story tower might look like. The company announced yesterday that construction will begin at 1500 Post Oak in November on the fifth skyscraper at Four Oaks Place; the proposed 560,000-sq.-ft. building, going up where a vacant 24-Hour Fitness now sits, will be connected by a skybridge to the company’s existing 1360 Post Oak building. BHP says that the twinnish towers are meant to consolidate the company’s entire workforce in Uptown.
Rendering: Houston Business Journal
Note: Story updated and corrected below.
Anadarko Petroleum announced to its employees last week that the company is ready to begin constructing a second office tower just west of its existing headquarters building in The Woodlands Town Center, a source tells Swamplot. The new building will fit on the corner of Lake Robbins Dr. and Woodloch Forest Dr., just south of The Woodlands Mall, and like the current tower will be visible from miles south on I-45. At the announced 31 stories, the new structure would be one floor
According to the report, parking will account for the building’s first 10 floors, though the renderings included in the announcement (above) appear to show a garage a bit shorter than that. The remaining floors are planned to accommodate company growth. Construction is expected to be complete by the spring of 2014. Anadarko did not announce the building’s contractor or architect.
Update, 1:25 pm: Groundbreaking is expected in a few weeks, our source adds; workers are beginning to clear the lot this week.
Renderings: Swamplot inbox
COMMENT OF THE DAY: DOWNTOWN IN THE DARK “. . . Yes, before the recession the downtown buildings were ablaze all night. It was striking, if quite wasteful. Nowadays we can enjoy the contrast.
The Houston skyline darkened at night continues its daytime conversation with sky, light, color and atmosphere. Our glass skyscrapers are our mountains — they reflect the changes in light and color and haze and brightness every day of the year. Dark at night, the effect is a continuum instead of a contrast. It’s subtle, and it’s nice.” [Miz Brooke Smith, commenting on What the Wells Fargo Tower Downtown Is Really Trying To Tell Us]
Sometime before the Christmas holiday last year, “high winds” caused a part of one of the wind turbines mounted to the top of downtown Houston’s Hess Tower to “detach” from its mounting point. “Two pieces of the debris fell to the street. Nobody was injured,” Hess Corporation spokesperson Mari Pat Sexton tells Swamplot today. Sexton had no comment on circulating rumors that one or more of the the pieces struck a car on the street.
The incident helps explain why the whirling turbines, installed as a featured element at the top of the new 29-story tower last summer, have been silent since mid-December. In the photo above, taken by a HAIF commenter shortly before Christmas, the turbines appear to be missing. “After the event occurred, (the turbines) were locked down,” Sexton says, adding she is unaware of the turbines’ current status or whether there are plans to replace them. “The building is still under construction.”
The Gold LEED certified skyscraper, named Discovery Tower until Hess signed on to lease the whole thing 2 years ago, sits at the northern edge of Discovery Green, a short walk from Minute Maid Park. It was developed by Trammell Crow, designed by Gensler, is the thirtieth-tallest building in Houston, and was the first in town to feature — and draw some power from — wind turbines. Here’s how they looked (and sounded) last year, before the incident:
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HERITAGE PLAZA SELLS HIGH That vaguely Mayan-looking tower at the northwestern edge of Downtown sporting the popular no-neck stone-top-sinking-into-a-glass-base look will soon have a new owner. Brookfield Office Properties has agreed to buy the 53-story Heritage Plaza for an almost-local-record $325 million — thanks in part to a little 12-year $200 million loan from MetLife negotiated by the seller, Atlanta’s Goddard Investment. Goddard paid $121 million for the building a little more than 5 years ago; the company added a new 1,058-car parking garage catty-corner to the property in 2008. [Real Estate Alert; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Jeff Balke