Clearing Out the Feagan Oaks from Magnolia Grove

These are probably the last images you’ll see of two large oak trees on the 4200 block of Feagan, says the reader who snapped pix this morning of the clearance event that’s been going on there for the last few days. There’ll be no designing around them, apparently: A worker on the property “said he hated to do it but both remaining oaks were coming down.” Coming in, gathers the reader: maybe 28 new townhomes between Dickson and Feagan St., just west of Jackson Hill. “Numerous smaller oaks, pecans, hackberries that are now crunched on the ground” were hacked away earlier.


Photos: Swamplot inbox

22 Comment

  • I don’t understand why they don’t make it a park?? The inner city needs more parks.

  • Who is “they”? I too would love to see more parks in this part of the city, but parks cost money. That means we either pay for it in taxes (either increased or through diversion from other projects) or we get a landowner that wants to donate valuable land for the public’s use. I am ok with both of those (the former, only to a certain extent), but I think it is an easy equation to understand.

  • Besides, there are parks aplenty there. Look at a map–it’s about three blocks from Cleveland Park, then there’s Buffalo Bayou Park and Spotts Park. (Really, these are all one enormous park–I’m not sure why they all have different park designations.) There are other neighborhoods that are much more park-poor.

  • More dicks coming to the hood!

  • I would bet a development that incorporated the mature trees could get a premium on the sq footage for not being another development of wall to wall townhomes in Rice Military. But design innovation has always been in short supply in Rice Military where sq footage rules the day.

  • @Old School: yeah I just don’t get it either. Something designed around the mature trees would contribute to sales value as well as a unique solution. Developers just see: return on dollar=max square footage possible.

  • @Old School

    Is there any concern about grounds maintanence when you have mature trees nearby, epecially with a townhouse complex. I mean, that would atleast mean that a sprinkler system would have to be in place and maintained, else subsidence would effect the homes. Is this usually accounted for in developers plans?

  • I didn’t take the pictures, but I live next door. Was sad to see the trees come down, but it was going to happen. If they were going to put up single family homes they might have been able to save some of the trees. Unfortunately tight packed townhouses and trees just can’t be friends in Houston. Lucky for me I live in a bungalow and will be able to enjoy the 3 giant trees on my property for years to come.

  • From the pictures it looks like the trees take a huge chunk of the property, which means the root system is at least as big as canopy, which means you can’t have a foundation close to it, which means it wouldn’t make financial sense to try to preserve them and still make money because most people when they buy “new construction” expect it to be treeless and would not pay sufficiently more just to have a couple of trees.

  • Townhomes suck balls. Who buys these things anyway?

  • The ONLY trees in these transition neighborhoods are in the yards of the old single-family homes. And their days are numbered.
    Homebuyers who don’t want trees, grass and air-space outside their front-doors should just live in highrises with doormen and pest-free patios.
    These highly desirable streets, being filled up as they are with maximum-lot, 3-story blocks standing shoulder to shoulder will become low rent ghettos when the residents ask “What kind of crap way to live is this? We’re moving to Cypress!” …or Livingston, or wherever suburbia exists at that time.
    People need Nature.

  • They may become ghettos at some point, but not anytime soon. Inner city homes are very desirable right now, justifying the increased density that townhomes provide. In fact, it is these townhomes that provide the higher disposable income patrons who fill the ‘chef driven restaurants’ that inner loopers love. Higher density supports better amenities. Lower density is simply the suburbs closer to downtown.

    There are consequences to higher density, to be sure, but most of us enjoy the amenities that the higher density provides. Obviously, losing some large trees is one of those consequences.

  • Sad to see those nice trees gone but there is a Tree Ordinance which will require at least 1 tree planted per 5000 sq ft lot and 1 or 2 out on the street. Unfortunately, within a typical townhouse setting, it’s unlikely any one tree will ever have a spread like the one in the pic.

  • A couple of trees get taken down but a couple of hundred have been planted recently nearby along Buffalo Bayou between Sabine St and Shepherd Dr.

    Also, a park at this site would be a complete waste since the large and very popular greenbelt exists nearby with pedestrian and bike trails, basketball courts, sand volleyball, fitness circuit stations, skateboard park, and natural tributaries with lots of animals living along the trails. Just walk some of the trails(especially in the morning) and you’ll see urban wildlife in abundance.

  • “These highly desirable streets, being filled up as they are with maximum-lot, 3-story blocks standing shoulder to shoulder will become low rent ghettos when the residents ask “What kind of crap way to live is this? We’re moving to Cypress!” …or Livingston, or wherever suburbia exists at that time.
    People need Nature.”

    That’s why it’s so cheap to live in Manhattan, I guess.

  • haha RWBoyd, ‘it’s so cheap to live in Manhattan!’
    Of course it isn’t cheap there.
    Very limited space.
    But how about if we here in Houston have a different vision?
    We have space.
    We’re about to build the fouth ring-road!
    Give highrises, industrial, commercial and greenspaces their due and residents the best quality of life.
    New York City has an awesome history but is positively ancient – and constricted – by USA standards.
    The future belongs to…

  • Do these people not know how horrible it is to live inside the loop, blocks from some great parks and minutes from an unimaginable amount of amenities that can only be offered in a great city such as Houston?

    It appears they do, because they keep building them and people keep buying them.

    It does suck to see such beautiful trees fall

  • Watch this turn into an Inner Loop versus Suburbs fight. A VERY POINTLESS fight. Both a good depending on what the homebuyer/apartment renter wants.

    P.S. New York City has sprawling suburbs as far as the eye can see for people who don’t want to live in the city.

  • Precisely. To suggest that one style of living is inherently superior or will be the “winner” in some future period strikes me as dumb. People who live in Manhattan could live on Long Island or in Connecticut or New Jersey a lot cheaper. But for reasons of their own, they choose to pay a large premium to live in Manhattan. Either choice is fine–depends on who you are and what your needs and desires and financial capacities are. Ditto with the choice of living in tightly packed insta-townhomes in Rice Military versus living in sprawling McMansions in Katy.

  • One of these days I’m going to start a movement to return Houston to the prairie that it was before World War II. I’ll organize a massive protest every time a new tree is planted, in an effort to restore Houston to the pristine flatland of pastures it originally was, before the invasions of those alien oak, pine and palm trees. (Never mind the tallows….)

  • As a friend of mine once observed on his blog: “Who needs a yard? Everybody’s kids play structured sports on a field 20 miles away that last just long enough for the mothers to compare new jewelry. Then the little tubbos can get back to online Lord of the Rings.”

  • Its Friday Friday gotta get down its Friday!