How One Buyer Would Use HISD’s Law Enforcement HS Property

HOW ONE BUYER WOULD USE HISD’S LAW ENFORCEMENT HS PROPERTY If the High School for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice is sold to St. Thomas High School competitor AV Dickson Street, the investment company has said it plans to link the 11-acre Magnolia Grove property with the adjacent and recently purchased Bayou Park apartments at 4400 Memorial to create a mixed-use district: Alison Malkhassian of AV Dickson Street tells The Leader‘s Charlotte Aguilar that “the long-term goal . . . could be to create a 26-acre mixed-use luxury retail-office-residential development on the combined properties — a process that would take about a decade.” Yesterday, HISD received the 2nd round of bids: St. Thomas is offering $42 million, about $800,000 more than AV Dickson Street — but Aguilar suggests that the sale might come down to rent: St. Thomas said it would charge the school $225,000 a month to lease the space for the next 5 years, compared with $100,000 a month from AV Dickson Street, a difference of $7.5 million over that time. [The Leader; previously on Swamplot] Photo: HISD

17 Comment

  • Where’s the traffic supposed to go for a 26 acre mixed-use development? Through the narrow, drainage ditched-lined residential streets to the north or along the limited-in-scope Memorial Drive?

    But more importantly, why is HISD blowing untold millions to move specialty HS campuses?

    IMO, I hope for St Thomas victory.

  • 26 acres of mixed use would offer a ton of tax revenue to the city. St Thomas High would offer zero. I know which one I am rooting for…

  • A decade? Try at least two!

  • I’d imagine St. Thomas will do whatever ($$) they have to do to acquire this property. Similar to Strake Jesuit buying that Fiesta near them.

    @doofus Do private schools not pay city taxes? Or does St. Thomas get out of it because it is a religious private school?

  • No developer would by a $40m+ site without a plan to impove the exisiting roads, drainage, and overall infrastructure of the surrounding area. Its a win-win for the city.

  • “Mixed Use” , its a dity word now like “Hipsters”…..Dirty….Filthy….Hipsters

  • Seriously, Limestone…I can’t imagine anyone who pays taxes in HISD thinking they should take the St. Thomas bid. The trustees’ job is not to worry about how property will be developed but to be stewards of our tax dollars. Accepting the St. Thomas offer that is far less desirable would be highly irresponsible. As much as the market changes, in 5 or 10 years, mixed use developments may not be the rage, and the property could well go to some other use. Doesn’t matter. HISD needs to make a good deal for its stakeholders NOW. And that appears to be with the investment company.

  • So, what this really means is that if the developer gets the property, once the school moves the building will be torn down and replaced by an empty lot as the demand for such an ambitious mixed use development ebbs and flows with the economy. What we could ultimately end up with is a corner store and some apartments “just until the economy improves”. At least with St. Thomas it will be a good use of the land. It isn’t currently generating taxes anyway.

  • Even some more cricket and soccer fields for a while are better for the taxpayer than selling the land to St. Thomas under the current offer…

    “St. Thomas said it would charge the school $225,000 a month to lease the space for the next 5 years, compared with $100,000 a month from AV Dickson Street, a difference of $7.5 million”

    Besides either way nothing is getting torn down for 5 years.

  • Actually mixed use is the oldest type of use in the world, as people used to live above their trade. So mixed-use is not a “fad” or “all the rage”. Actually it is quite opposite as suburbs and individual mobility with cars is a short bli in history and is “all the rage” (literally and figuratively).

  • Ahhhh, plenty of “who give a hoot about the long term, what’s in it for ME NOW??!!??” on this one.

    I don’t think anyone would credibly argue that St. Thomas does not give a very good education, including to some who otherwise would not be in such an institution. In essence, it would be carrying the present use forward (albeit with a somewhat different focus).

    As to why the focused magnet high schools are moving, it’s been pretty well reported (including on this very forum) that HISD wants to have the various campuses located near their respective “real life” counterparts (i.e., HSPVA downtown near the theaters, Health Care over by the Med Center, Law Enforcement closer to the courthouses and enforcement agencies), and to have facilities optimized for the school’s purpose.

  • Bet St. Thomas really, really regrets selling the Bayou Park property so many years ago.

  • The phrase I keep seeing is:…”the long-term goal……COULD BE to create a 26 acre…”

    So, that says to me that they don’t know exactly what they will do with the property.

    What is between the word “goal” (with all the dots dots dots) and the words “could be to create”??

    I would not trust a developer to follow through.

  • who figures out if these bidders really have the bucks to pay up and on time ?

  • Remember, we’re talking about $41 MILLION here all cash. No developer will tie up $41m of capital without a plan. If this were sold to the TAXABLE ENTITY, HISD will receive at least $+450k a year in tax revenues on this site WITHOUT any improvements from now until the end of time! Consider how much tax revenue HISD would benefit from the sale if there were a $200m improvement on this site.

  • I love this developer. They lose the bid by almost a million dollars, and try to claim they are the winner. That’s rich.

  • It’s been rumored that St. Thomas doesn’t have the money to pay for it and isn’t even under contract on the site. Its been almost a year. This “bidding war” is looking a little bit rigged.