06/23/16 2:45pm

Allen Center Skybridge Remodeling, 500 Dallas St., Downtown, Houston, 77002

Currently underway: the partial disassembly of 1 of the 2 skybridges connecting One and Two Allen Center at the corner of Dallas and Smith streets downtown. The bridge pictured above is expected to survive the planned 3-tower redevelopment — a permit to remodel it was issued on Monday with some other OKs on the work, which includes turning the rubble-filled space to the east into a Smith-St.-facing events lawn and concert space. Renderings previously released by Brookfield suggest that the other skybridge, from which the above photo was taken, won’t be so lucky:


Last Days Downtown
06/23/16 12:00pm

2415 Avalon Pl., Avalon Place, Houston

2415 Avalon Pl., Avalon Place, Houston

Thanks today go to the 2,608-sq.-ft., 3-bedroom home at 2415 Avalon Pl., checking in as Swamplot’s Sponsor of the Day!

If you dream about the back of your house opening up to a backyard pool-and-spa combo, you’ll want to check out this place. By removing the walls surrounding what was once a separate study adjacent to the living room, the owners of this brick midcentury home have created a full-width interior space that lines and laps the pool. An array of 10 full-height expanses of glass (including 2 sets of French doors) covers the home’s back wall. The photos above show a portion of this arrangement, but you’ll want to click through the slideshow on the property website to appreciate the extent of this poolside hangout.

How about adding to that vision with a ground-floor master bedroom opening onto that space? The other 2 bedrooms are upstairs (one with a built-in office alcove; the other with windows on 3 sides). Because it’s in Avalon Place, Chuy’s and West Ave (to the southeast), River Oaks Elementary (to the west), and the River Oaks Theater (to the northeast) are all within walking distance.

Do look through all the pics on the 2415 Avalon Pl. website, where you can also find additional details. It’s listed for sale by New Leaf Real Estate, which offers unique savings programs for both sellers and buyers.

Everybody into the Sponsor of the Day pool! Line up for the diving board here.


Sponsor of the Day
06/23/16 11:30am

Hobby Livable Centers May Meeting Presentation Slide

The Gulfgate-Mall-seeded TIRZ that absorbed many of the commercial corridors around Hobby Airport back in 2014 has been weighing plans for redeveloping the acquired zone, working with the Houston-Galveston Area Council through the organization’s agreeably-named Livable Centers program. A few public workshops were held last month; a reader tells Swamplot that the management district’s consultants have also been interviewing area real estate folks as they come up with ideas for new developments to suggest. The next workshop is planned for the evening of Wednesday, July 13th; the district is pushing an online survey in the meanwhile.

Presentation slides from the most recent workshop included the map below of sidewalks in the area being studied (roughly bounded by I-45, Almeda Genoa Rd., Mykawa Rd., and Dixie Dr., as shown above) — roads marked in green have new sidewalks, yellow lines highlight sidewalks rated by the district as good, red shows sidewalks rated as poor, and brown shows roads with sidewalks rated as missing:


Making a Scene
06/23/16 9:15am

UH READY FOR LEGAL ACTION OVER SOUTH TEXAS COLLEGE OF LAW’S HOUSTON REBRANDING University of Houston Law Center, Third Ward, Houston, 77004“It has come to the University of Houston’s attention that South Texas College of Law has announced that it is changing its name to Houston College of Law. . . . The University of Houston is concerned about the significant confusion this creates in the marketplace and will take any and all appropriate legal actions to protect the interests of our institution, our brand, and our standing in the communities we serve.” [University of Houston; previously on SwamplotPhoto of University of Houston Law Center: Douglas R.

06/23/16 8:30am


Photo of the Williams Tower: elnina via Swamplot Flickr Pool

06/22/16 4:00pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: LAMENTING THE LOSS OF FLAUNTED HOUSTON HIGHRISE HEIGHTS One Moody Plaza, Galveston, TX 77550“Boo! Are times so lean that a company can’t show off its greatness by allowing the public to partake of their rarified views? Is this the new normal? Who remembers Moody Plaza’s [20th] floor Galveston observation space? Closed.” [movocelot, commenting on One Last Look from the Chase Tower Observation Deck, Now Closed to the Public] Photo of One Moody Plaza in Galveston: Russell Hancock via Swamplot Flickr Pool

06/22/16 2:30pm

DID SOUTH TEXAS LAW JUST BECOME HOUSTON’S FIRST “COLLEGE”? 1303 San Jacinto St., Downtown, Houston, 77002 Downtown’s South Texas College of Law just announced that the 93-year-old school is changing its name to Houston College of Law. A press release issued by the school this morning calls the name swap part of the institution’s ongoing effort to “distinguish itself regionally and nationally” — and indeed, the name is distinct from those of both law-school-containing University of Houston (located 2 miles southeast) and same-chancellor-separate-institution University of Houston Downtown (a mile to the north), though all 3 schools employ a red and white color scheme. Unlike other recent Houston school renamings,  today’s announced change appears to be effective immediately; the law school’s logos have already been updated, though its website address has not. [Houston College of Law] Photo of Houston College of Law at 1303 San Jacinto St.: Houston College of Law

06/22/16 12:45pm

Tookie's Seafood, 1106 Bayport Blvd., Seabrook, TX, 77586

Seabrook’s Tookie’s Burgers’ new marine-minded companion is up and running this week at 1106 Bayport Blvd. The original rural-drugstore-themed Tookie’s opened in 1975 but was destroyed by Hurricane Ike; Barry and Melissa Terrell bought and reopened the 3,800-sq.-ft.-ish burger stand in 2011 before getting started on an elevated 12,000-sq.-ft. Tookie’s-branded seafood spot (shown above in late spring prior to final construction touches) in the lot next door. 

The new Tookie’s, standing on stilts some 3 blocks from the SH 146 bridge over Clear Lake and Galveston Bay, is more hurricane resistant than the still-functioning original (or at least less flood-prone). The raised space is designed to hold around 400 people (counting a 100-person banquet space), though the company says they’re running at about half capacity for now while the staff gets the hang of things. Here’s a peek at the building from earlier this year, with the yellow signage of the original Tookie’s just visible in the distance to the upper left:


Jumbo Shrimp Shop
06/22/16 12:00pm

405 Avondale St., Avondale West Historic District, Montrose, Houston

Today’s sponsor is a 100-plus-year-old home in Montrose’s Avondale neighborhood that’s been converted for use as a photography studio. 405 Avondale St., Swamplot appreciates your support!

Would you keep this 1915-vintage property in the Avondale West Historic District as a commercial space — or convert it back to a home? Either way could work, or maybe even a little of both — if you turn the main house back to a house but decide to use the separate 2-level studio building in back as a workshop, gallery, or office space. The studio building has its own full bathroom; the entire lot measures 9,800 sq. ft.

Inside the 2-story original house at the front of the lot you’ll find original wood floors, dark-stained ceiling beams in the main living spaces, 3 bedrooms, and 4 fireplaces. A small courtyard sits between the 2 buildings; in front are parking spaces for visitors. With the Avondale address come dozens of fine restaurants, coffee shops, and other Montrose attractions only a couple of blocks’ walk away.

Head on over to the property website to see just how close to the heart of Montrose 405 Avondale is; you’ll find more details about the property there, along with great photos of its many interesting spaces.

Let Swamplot readers in on your real estate secrets. Here’s how to get on board as a Swamplot Sponsor.

Sponsor of the Day
06/22/16 11:00am

Hanover Montrose, 3400 Montrose Blvd., WAMM, Houston, 77006

Rendering of Proposed 30-Story Hanover Apartment Tower at 3400 Montrose, Montrose, HoustonThe eastern face of 3400 Montrose Blvd. appears to be losing color this week as the building’s mid-August opening looms ever closer. A reader sends the above over-the-Walgreens shot of the Skybar-replacing apartment tower (which now looks to have most of its balcony railings in place as well), capturing part of the building’s patch-by-patch transition this week from concrete gray to previous-rendering white.

And anyone jonesing for some up-in-the-air views following the closure of the Chase Tower Sky Lobby can get a half-strength fix from this shot of Downtown, taken by the tipster earlier this spring from a ledge on the building’s 28th floor:


Almost Showtime by Disco Kroger
06/22/16 8:30am


Photo: Russell Hancock via Swamplot Flickr Pool