On Top of Old 1,1-Dichloroethene: The New Silber Rd. Walmart

A little more detail on that other Walmart headed for I-10, from Memorial Examiner reporter Rusty Graham: Construction will begin within a couple of months on the 185,000 sq. ft. Supercenter just north of the Marq*E Entertainment Center, on the remaining 23 acres of the former Cameron Iron Works plant. The company has quietly owned a portion of the TCEQ remediation site, which features soil and groundwater rich in cleaning solvents, since 2008. (“Most of the soil at the site has now been cleaned to meet residential standards,” Cooper Cameron claims.) Six of 7 surrounding pad sites will line Silber Rd. The Walmart itself will form a scenic backdrop to an expansive 880-space parking lot:


Images: Memorial Examiner (photo) and Lovett Commercial (site plan)

18 Comment

  • Oh yes, another huge expanse of un-used asphalt. It continues to amaze me the huge parking lots that accompany a new supercenter. My local supercenter rarely has more than half the lot in use at anytime except during the last few days before Xmas. Why not build smaller paved lots and have overflow parking that is more friendly like “grass pavers”?

  • Assuming that the number of cars in a lot remains constant (say, 250), smaller paved lots offering only 300 spaces would make the parking lot look crowded, whereas larger paved lots offering, say, 500 spaces, would still look reasonably spacious.

    If I am driving around town and need to stop to buy some bars of soap, and I see a store on the left with a crowded parking lot and the store on the right with a spacious parking lot, which one do you think that I would normally choose to go to?

    I don’t want to spend 5 minutes looking for one of the 50 remaining parking spaces. Do you?

    Plus, if the parking lot looks crowded, don’t you think that a driver is going to say, “ummm..that store looks really busy. It might take a while to get in and out of there. I think I’ll pass and go to the store across the street.”

  • Really defending parking lots? Please pave over the world then, generally speaking Houston is overly parking lot happy, and sometimes quite excessive. It is a factor to business owners in smaller shopping centers but hardly would consider a factor with Wally world.

  • Parking lots are necessary in a city like Houston, but less is better. Green spots for overflow capacity are a great idea. Putting some trees between rows would reduce heat island effects and just make the space nicer to look at and walk across. And I bet they could just build fewer spots and be fine. But Wal-Mart doesn’t seem to think in quality-of-life terms—cheap, big, and cheap seem to be their primary concerns. Sigh.

  • The amount of spaces they provide is based on factors that really aren’t in control by Walmart. RP’s analysis is right also. The appearance of many open spaces will prevent people from passing by thinking it’s too busy.

    Also, there are many Walmarts that fairly full lots on a daily basis. Hard to believe, but I’ve been to them and it ain’t no party.

  • Really? You guys think parking isn’t a big factor when designing a Walmart? As if a giant corporation hasn’t done tons of studies to figure out the exact number of spaces that best suits a store with regards to capacity, customer appeal, paving material, closeness to the doors, width of each spot, number of handicap and pregnant spots, and on and on.

    It’s not about quality of life or aesthic appeal….it’s strictly about profit. And nothing is going to change that. The only way Walmart reduces a parking space or adds a tree is if their formula says it will turn a profit.

  • OH GREAT! it is going by my house. so much for neighborhood and value.
    I wished they would look at re-using and adapting the Northwest mall. Plenty of unused parking over there. great central location, easy access from 290/610.

    Awty School is going to love having delivery trucks going behind the school.

    Friday and Saturday nights will be traffic hell!

  • jayc,

    TxDOT will be ripping up the parking lot of the Northwest mall from 18th at the Shell/Burger King to the front door of Macy’s wiping out the strip center with the BBQ place. METRO and the County have eyes on buying the rest of the mall to be torn down as part of a future transit center.

  • Crap demeri’s caters for our clients, now i’ll have to brave the lousy Shepherd one..

  • Yeah, TxDOT will be rebuilding the interchange with 290 and 610 and it goes all the way and ties into the new 610 and 10 interchange. The design gets rid of the criss-cross merging that’s pretty dangerous.

  • Back when I was in the retail game, I worked at Northwest Mall for a year plus. It’s completely riciculous that you have to cross four lanes of traffic if you’re heading north on 610 and want to exit at 18th Street.

  • That’s the issue they are going to fix. Construction is scheduled to start in May 2011 and yes it is funded.

  • Nice.

  • Just what Houston needs, another shopping center and strip mall. Another gathering place for those who frequent Wally World. They should have purchased and built on 610 between I-10 and 290. Large lot right next to the Houston Garden Center. Much more convenient location than Silber and I-10. I’m sure the residents in the nearby neighborhoods are very unhappy … I sure would be!

  • The City of Houston is very influential in mandating the parking ratio for commercial properties such as this potential Walmart development. Walmart isn’t always the one pushing for the expansive parking lots.

  • Just head down 290 5 minutes to Fairbanks or or whatever that cross street is, walmart’s just down 290 — they usually won’t build them too close together unless it’s FM1960..

  • Turfed overflow parking? Can you imagine how many millions of dollars Wally would end up paying out the first time someone skidded into someone else and broke a bone. Not ever going to happen.

  • kjb434, hope that metro does end up doing exactly that, it would be great for that little pocket of land. i guess the stadium wouldn’t have to be used for rodeo park and ride either anymore! i knew the owner was waiting to see what got claimed through imminent domain or whatever, but this sounds like good use.