Most Grandiose Development: The Official Nominees

Note: Voting for the Swampies has ended. See the bottom of this post (above the comments) for a link to the results!

And now, certainly the most important category of the entire Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate: the award for Most Grandiose Development.

Well, it is a big deal: The official nominees have been selected, and voting can now begin! Swamplot’s high-tech voting setup prescribes this not-too-complicated process: Vote for the winner in this category by adding your comment below! Or send us an email with your choice. Easy enough?

The nominees for Most Grandiose Development are . . .


1. One Park Place. The new apartment building the Finger Companies is building at the head of Discovery Green, Downtown. “It’s even putting on a big pointy hat.

2. The Two 150-ft. Crosses Planned for I-45. Grace Community Church’s scheme to mark territory in a big, big way is limited only by the FAA.

3. Memorial Hermann Tower. “The new giant robot-looking building overlooking I-10 next to the Memorial City Mall, with the multistory crown on top. It’s fit for a (chess) king!

4. 16427 Telge Rd., Cypress. The home of former Royce Builders president John Speer, now on the market for a cool $9.8 million. “Maybe all that builder swank wasn’t such a big deal when he had it built in 2004, but it’s looking mighty grandiose today.”

5. The Titan. “The plan: Build a Rocketships of the Roman Empire-themed luxury condo tower on Post Oak Blvd., with the units named after reg’lar folks like J. Paul Getty, Frank Sinatra, Warren Buffet, Rupert Murdoch, and Coco Chanel. If Randall Davis can get it built, it should have very convenient access to the McDonald’s drive-thru next door.

6. Turnberry Tower Houston. Grandiosity was the Turnberry’s raison d’etre, but now it ain’t gonna etre. More than 650 private toilets. The jokes tell themselves.

Which one of these projects is (self-) important enough to deserve your vote?

Update: The winners have been announced!

Photos: The Finger Companies (One Park Place); Grace Community Church (cross); HAIF user hldjhn (Memorial Hermann Tower); HAR (16427 Telge Rd.)

23 Comment

  • The overweening pride of the Memorial Hermann colossi, both in the TMC and at Memorial. Such self-referential aggrandizement for a condo tower, a corporate HQ, even a church…those we can stomach. But a hospital?

  • The Cross – the rest of the projects seem par for the course for Houston development.

  • My vote is for Memorial Hermann Tower. It’s amazing to see such a large building with a split design personality.

  • My vote is for Turnberry Tower. Who can resist that many toilets?

  • Not that I support it, but the cross

  • The Titan. The name itself is so grandiose it makes me laugh.

  • Ugh, those freaking crosses . No offense to any higher powers out there .

  • The Titan. Is there a Madoff suite?

  • The Grace Community Church has it by giving me a crusafixation. With NASA’a control center here – I guess they want Jesus to notice us from space too! When the Egyptian’s find out they will want to put big flashing blue beacons on the pyramids next.

  • I’m tempted to vote for the crosses, but I have my doubts about whether that project will really get built. The Titan and One Park Place might actually be nice, and the Royce builders house is just a big ol’ McMansion. Memorial Hermann gets my vote, for its “What the hell is THAT?!?” quotient with extra credit for being next to one of Houston’s biggest traffic jams.

  • My vote is for Memorial Hermann. It’s gross.

  • The “spaceship” on top of Memorial Hermann Hospital. Is that really necessary? Will the next “one up” for the yups be “I had my gifted and talented baby in the penthouse of Memorial Hermann”?

  • I am going to have to go with the Titan. haha

  • The Titan. Talk about a monument to colossal greedy egos. Yeeesh.

    If Nero lived in Houston in 2008, he would want to live in the Titan. Or perhaps he would have designed it.

  • Does anyone else find it creepy that Davis wanted to recreate the look of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis for a building targeted at the obscenely rich? Metroplis is about the struggle of of abused workers against a fascist corporate state. The film fascinated Hitler and the Nazi Party – who connected it to their goals in some twisted way.

  • “The film fascinated Hitler and the Nazi Party – who connected it to their goals in some twisted way.”

    It probably fascinated Randall Davis who connected it to his goals in the same twisted way. Anything by Randall Davis these days should be automatically given the most grandiose award.

  • The crosses of Grace get my vote. The Titan is very grandiose but ‘titans of industry’ don’t typically promote the virtues of humility while building self promoting monuments.

  • How about none of the above? I’d vote for Blvd. Place before any of the others. What about Discovery Green, Main Place, Houston Pavilions, Discovery Tower, that other Memorial Hermann building (the one that dominates the view of the Med Center), etc…

  • I am posting twice because Swamplot needs to define what it is we are supposed to be voting for… A finished project – or one that is yet to be?

  • @Eric: All the nominees fit the award profile. See the original post announcing the category for a more thorough description.

  • In a serious vote, I’ll give it over to Finger’s One Park Place. If it proves to be successful, it WILL spur more downtown residential development.

    The others are likely to not be built or are so damn ugly that they should already be imploded. I do wonder where the Houston Pavilions are on this list? Everyone loves a high school shopping mall…

  • I give a Finger to One park Place, however Randall Davis should go on the hall of fame list as his taste (sic) for over decorating everything with the astonishing idea that if it is classical it must be tasteful; a horrible misuse of ornamentation-dayglo lipstick on a pig!!! Davis wins my vote hand and thumbs down.Bring on the lions and gladiators…and Hal for the rocket ship.

  • This was a hard one to decide, but I’ll go with the Titan.

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