Comment of the Day: H-E-B in the Heights

COMMENT OF THE DAY: H-E-B IN THE HEIGHTS “. . . Other good Heights grocery news is that HEB is seriously considering opening a store on Heights BLVD. just across the street from The Art Car Museum.” [EMME, commenting on Expanded Heights Kroger: Now Wider Than Wide Angle]

26 Comment

  • Not sure if that spot is big enough for a decent HEB — we’ve already got one near 18th street that is, IMHO, too small.

  • Just a comment, while the HEB might be located between Heights and Yale it will not be located in the Heights. The Heights boundaries only extend to the North side of I-10.

    It is amazing to me how many times people use the name Heights to describe locations that are outside of Heights. An example is Sawyer Heights which is actually located in the boundries of First Ward.

    Some of those arson fires that were set were outside of the Heights area but the news media still said they were all in the Heights.

  • Ummm…that spot is huge, not sure if you’re just thinking of the small area between Heights Blvd and Yale st., but I think EMME is referring to large empty lot between Yale and Bonner streets. The whole lot is being brokered by CBRE and asking $24 million.

  • Call it the Heights, call it First Ward, call it Ishmael. I don’t care. I just want a grocery store in my neighborhood!

    Seriously though I think the historical boundaries of the Heights start where Waugh changes names at Washington to Heights Blvd.

  • Buildergeek is correct about the historical boundaries. I work at HCAD and we have the original plats for the Heights, and all of Houston for that matter. The Heights starts just south of Washington Ave near the name change & for 1 block east and west of heights blvd until you get into what is common known as the heights. Not that it really matters because it’s all just historical definitions any way, and now there is a giant freeway there so who cares what you call the little piece to the south. But to be technically correct, yes that area is part of what was originally the heights.

    If this HEB is at all similar to the one on 18th then please don’t even bother. I pick stuff up there because it’s right by my house, but their selection leaves a little to be desired. Fiesta on Shephard is still my favorite grocery store.

  • Need a “just right” size HEB!

    I agree with urbannomad j that the HEB on 18th is too small and not enough selection. But the HEB on 1-10 @ Bunker Hill is way too big. I went there and it felt like I walked 3 miles! Walking from the produce section to freezer section was a major hike.
    By the way , if you live on Washington Ave check out the El Tiempo Market. It great place if you need to get some produce quick. It has the best quality meats at decent prices.
    Actually, the coolest and most FUN ( and surprisingly cleanest) grocery store is the Korean H-Mart at Westview and Blalock. It was an old Randalls so it is quite large. It has the BEST SEAFOOD counter! My favorite store use to be the former Fiesta at I-10 @ Blalock. It is turning into Ranch Market Chinese grocery and looks like it going to open any day now. It appears that the “Chain” Asian stores are moving to Houston and going to drive the mom and pops out.
    Also did anyone see the that the Wal Mart “Neighborhood Mart” on Long Point is now a Supermercado de Wal Mart? It is Wal-Marts first Supermercado in the US. Watch out Fiesta: Wal – Mart smells profits in the Hispanic markets!
    In my opinion – Kroger, HEB, and even Whole Foods are just plain boring compared to the ethnic stores!

  • LOL @ Marci! I guess it was unintentional, but that comment should go down as a classic piece of Heights snobbery! :)

    If HEB does come through with these plans, I would hope it is planned like the Buffalo Market HEB off of Buffalo Spdway. I think it’s the perfect “in-between” size.

    I have also read on HAIF that 24 hour Fitness was also considering a location in this lot as well. Supposedly was going to be an “Ultra” club, which would be the first location in Texas. Makes sense as there is no 24 hour fitness serving the Heights area

  • Terry, you are correct — I pulled up Google satellite and there IS a lot of room there. I think that would be a great location for a nice big HEB. Im with TomT on the Super H Mart too, and Im looking forward to seeing what the 99 Ranch has to offer. I miss that nice big clean Fiesta on I-10. My 6th ward friends have mentioned El Tiempo — its time for me to get my gringa self in there to check it out.

  • I think HEB needs to take a hard close look at the traffic patterns and ask themselves if the lot is really quick, easy, and convenient to get to from Washington Ave and from the ‘real’ Heights.

    The traffic flow around Washington Ave, Heights Blvd, and Yale is strange and a pain. You can not turn left onto Heights from eastbound on Washington. There is a another set of lights on Center St plus the RR tracks.
    Also , there is no exit from I -10 east bound for Heights/ Yale. You have to exit Studemont and U turn. In addition there are no I-10 feeder roads from Yale to Shepherd.
    Granted, the Target Center at Sawyer is a pain to get to from Washington Ave, but is easy from I-10.
    Just to start another argument, is I-10 from Downtown to 610 West officially part of the Katy freeway or just I-10 east? I think the Katy freeway starts at 610 West. That is where old Katy Road begins.

  • @urbannomad j: can i get copies of the original plats for the Heights that you referenced? that would be a nice attribute to my walls.

  • It’s funny that people so often debate the boundaries of “the Heights” as if there were legal boundaries for a place called “the Heights”. “The Heights” is a subjective concept. Few would debate that Houston Heights and Woodland Heights are both part of “the Heights”, but they are distinct neighborhoods originally developed at different times by different people – each with their own boundaries. So, if you’re going to include them together in your definition of “the Heights” (as most would), then the question becomes what other contiguous neighborhoods (e.g., Sunset Heights, Shady Acres, Norhill), if any, should also be included. Again, you may have an argument for which contiguous neighborhoods should/shouldn’t be included, but there’s no single objectively correct answer if you don’t first agree on your criteria for making the determination.

  • Now my head hurts…

  • @TomT – I think I remember hearing at SN22 meeting that TXDOT is working on a new Yale exit off of I-10 to alleviate the pressure now felt at Durham/Shepherd and Studemont/Montrose. Can anyone confirm?

  • Some boundries are very real, like the dry zone. And as far as HAR is concerned, Houston Heights has boundries.

    As to HEB and 24 hour Fitness- Heard it before. The was an HEB at 11th just west of Yale that was supposed to become a strip center with a THF but it ended up being a bank with a giant parking lot. (Before the HEB, it was Moore’s grocery- anyone remember that?)
    There was an HEB and THF rumored near the Target on Sawyer, too.

    I’m just saying don’t get your hopes up, though the old Son’s of Herman lot would be excellent.

  • @Tomt: I could be wrong, but my understanding is that the freeways are named for the directions they are headed in. It’s like they do it in Los Angeles.

    I also believe that Downtown is the cut off and start points. For example, I45 is the North Freeway North of downtown, but once you leave downtown it’s the Gulf Freeway.

    I believe the Katy Freeway begins downtown and goes West. I could be wrong, but that’s been my understanding.

  • This is the Heights. It is on Heights Blvd. 1st street is South of I-10. Notice there are no 2nd, 3rd, and 4th streets…those were taken up by I-10. Try telling those Houston Heights residents that lost their homes to imminent domain that they weren’t Heights residents because an interstate determines a neighborhood.

  • And thats on Crip!

  • I agree that Houston Heights has legal boundaries. As does the dry zone (White Oak Bayou is one of its boundaries). It’s “the Heights” that is different things to different people – it usually includes at least Houston Heights and Woodland Heights, often more.

    I think I heard the same update on the Yale off-ramp proposal that Kristin did. That would be a pretty major project if it were to happen.

  • From what I know from work, Kristin is right. The IH-10 feeder roads between Yale and Shepherd (as well as an additional ramp on each side) will be built eventually, but it’s a low priority for TxDOT. They’re still on the books but it’ll be several years. A dozen places could open and close before the feeders are built.

    And that portion of IH-10 *is* officially the Katy Freeway. All the businesses that face the feeders between Studemont and Yale and between Patterson and TC Jester have “XXXX Katy Freeway” as their address.

  • Guys, listen to finness and be careful on the “grocery store is coming” folklore.

    A grocery store is a major economic feather in the cap for a transitional neighborhood. Just ask the residents of EaDo/Eastwood. I hear it from them all the time -we need a grocery store! There are many forces that want/need a store to enter. Anyone from nearby strip center owners, realtors, apartment landlords and especially Land Brokers all would see a lift from a convenient grocer. (and they all talk!)

    I have heard a “Whole Foods in Galveston!!” ruse that has been making the rounds for 2 years.

  • ..and now “HEB in the Heights” has been tweeted on twitter……

  • I do remember when Moore’s was operating on 11th where the bank branch is now. I used to shop there over almost 30 yrs ago. Damn I’m old.

    I also miss the Fiesta at Blalock and 10.

    I’m looking forward to the 99 Ranch store.

    The crappy HEB on 18th and Ella annoys me to no end. Of course, so does the Kroger on Shepherd and 11th.

    Fiesta is focusing on opening stores in other parts of the state. Never mind the neighborhood where their corporate headquarters is. The president of Fiesta cut his teeth working at the North Shepherd store. It still sucks… and smells bad… and I told him so.

    For the money, I still like the Foodarama at 18th and Ella. Clean, friendly and cheap.

    I need to get my hola on and check out the supermercado on Longpoint. I’m getting their ads all the time now. I just hate going over to that part of Longpoint, it’s such a dump and is crime laden.

  • I love that I live in the legal nowhere land between Historic Heights and Woodland Heights (both actually well defined).

    Lets me be snooty about not living where the snooty people are.

  • The newly renovated 11th St Kroger ROCKS. A vast improvement over the old Kroger there, which was the best in the neighborhood. I expect HEB, Randalls, and possibly Whole Foods to follow. They should fire a few people in their marketing/competitive intelligence groups for missing out on the opportunities in the area, particularly in the “grab and go” arena (currently serviced quite well by Central Market in the inner loop). Why, you ask? 1) lots of empty nesters (they have enough $$ and taste to eat out well, but not much in the area) 2) singles (no desire or know-how to cook for one), 3) young affluent families (if both parents work, they have no time to cook well).

    Swamplot, please keep us informed of any new supermarkets over in EaDo. Or even Midtown…It is unreal that downtown and midtown have so few food shopping options.

  • The new Kroger is so very HEB! Tons of prepared foods, huge natural section, but NOT well priced. $7 for greek yogurt? $5.49/lb for granola?
    The rehab of the old section is still to come, so it is a split personality store right now. And it will require a lot of walking.

    But my question is – who will they steal customers from but themselves?

  • You guys need to update your pictures the kroger is done and they are putting in a subway and gamestop next door.