08/09/18 5:15pm

Houston’s latest Bacco-branded wine venue Bacco’s Wine Garden has begun its takeover of 3611 Montrose Blvd. by adding this corral to the house’s front parking lot, although nothing’s being consumed on site yet; a TABC application is still pending approval. Now enclosed within the pen: the gable-roofed sign once colored by the logo for Tony’s Place, the homeless center for LGBT youth under 26 that relocated last summer to a Midtown space it shares with the Salvation Army’s own youth shelter on McGowen St.

On the north side of the building, Bacco’s’s own sign is now up:

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Bacco’s Wine Garden
08/09/18 2:15pm

A Swamplot reader sends a photo (top) of the trees that appear to have grown up outside the former McGowen Cleaners real fast since plant life was first added to the bed (above) earlier this year. That’s because the crew now converting the place into a restaurant called Vibrant tore out the bushier trees just over a week ago and replaced them with a row of taller new cedars.

The swap-out left the bed short on plant life last Wednesday and Thursday:

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Growth Spurt
08/09/18 1:00pm

A POST OAK PARKING GARAGE SOLUTION TO THE DEMAND FOR DRIVE-IN THEATERS The head of the company now bringing a movie theater to the top of the BLVD Place garage at Post Oak and San Felipe tells the Chronicle’s Ileana Najarro that he “hopes to offer a social experience for those nostalgic for drive-in theaters.” What better place to do it than in Houston, where people drive in and out of buildings all the time? The catch: you’ll have to get out of your car and amble up to the garage’s top floor above Whole Foods and other retail, where it might get noisy — especially with that bus lane construction happening now on Post Oak. But there’s a solution: wireless headphones for each audience member — which Rooftop Cinema Club’s head says will “replicate the intimate setting of one’s car,” just like the old days. [Houston Chronicle; previously on Swamplot] Photo of Whole Foods at 1700 Post Oak Blvd.: Dung L.

08/09/18 12:00pm

A big thank-you is due Johnnie T. Melia Moving & Storage — our Sponsor of the Day. Swamplot appreciates the support!

Johnnie T. Melia Moving & Storage is a well-established, family-owned and family-operated local business that’s been moving Houstonians and their possessions from their old homes to their next homes (and businesses from old to new digs) since 1969. The company maintains its own fleet of moving trucks and vans in several sizes. And every J.T. Melia mover works for the company full-time; they don’t use temporary or part-time labor.

You can read up on several other unique and longstanding J.T. Melia policies intended to ensure successful and worry-free moves for their customers — on the company’s extensive website. There you’ll also find tips for successful moves, testimonials from happy decampers the company has helped over the years, and advice on how to get an accurate quote for your move. Plus: info on packing, storage, and piano-moving services, and reports on everything from tipping etiquette to a couple of the company’s rescue operations after Hurricane Harvey.

If you’re picking up from one Houston-area house or apartment and headed to another, contact J.T. Melia Moving & Storage for a free quote!

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Sponsor of the Day
08/09/18 9:45am

Ground beef chain BuffBurger is about to move into the new Citywest Retail Center 3 blocks outside Beltway 8 and just down the street from Phillips’s year-old headquarters and garage-top sports complex. So far, the strip center’s lineup includes almost exclusively food joints of the fast-casual variety, with a lone Ideal Dental office in middle of the east building. Its coming soon sign is pictured in the photo above, west of Yogurtland.

BuffBurger’s spot — its third since opening in the new Alabama Row strip across W. Alabama from the Menil in March — is in the shorter and stouter east building, where it’ll fill in corner at the far end from Panera’s already-open endcap:

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Westchase
08/09/18 8:30am

Photo: Marc Longoria via Swamplot Flickr Pool

Headlines
08/08/18 4:00pm

The former art and event space dubbed the Indian Summer Lodge — tucked in between the MKT Trail and Blue Line Bike Lab on the corner of White Oak Dr. and Columbia St. — is now being shopped around to potential new owners. Pictured at top from the north is the 16,170-sq.-ft. trapezoidal property, home to a Quonset hut (shown above) and adjacent lodge building.

A year after the land was briefly rumored to be taking on the Tacos A Go Go that eventually moved in 4 blocks east of it, proprietor Jeff Law sold it in 2010. Since then, most portions of a third treehouse building that also sat on site and included a rooftop balcony have been torn down.

Here’s what $1,649,000 gets you now:

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Indian Summer Lodge
08/08/18 1:30pm

Add F45 Training to the list of businesses taking over warehouses next to where I-45 will run over a few of its own once its rerouted through East Downtown. That’s the gym’s black box in the photo at top, neighbored by the Ferris wheel that new-ish bar Truck Yard recently installed in its own next-door lot. North of an adjacent portion of the building that F45 hasn’t touched, exterior work added new horizontal siding a couple shades darker than the previous off-white onto the structure, as well as the doorway — pictured above — atop which the national fitness chain has been flexing its COMING SOON signage for the past few months.

A permit filed yesterday for the building at 1110 Hutchins indicates rehab work is about to head inside to deal with a 2,650-sq.-ft. portion of its space. It’s 10,000 sq.-ft. total and backs up nearly halfway down the block on Lamar St. where it stands off from the south side of the Kim Hung Supermarket, long-whispered to be about to be demolished for something much taller.

Photos: F45 Training

Bodybuilding Buildings
08/08/18 11:30am

NEW BIRD-SHAPED BOATS PUT FORMER WOODLANDS CRUISER PASSENGERS IN THE DRIVER’S SEAT A flock of 10 swan-shaped boats has now picked up where The Woodlands’ 6 Waterway Cruisers left off when they were destroyed by Harvey last year — reports the Villager’s Marialuisa Rincon — rendering the township’s shipping channels unnavigable by public transit. (One Cruiser survived, but town officials decommissioned it anyway when they terminated their contract with the boat service’s operator in February.) Now, their “long-necked replacements” have former passengers taking water travel into their own hands through the use of a rudder — and their feet, by pedaling — to get where they want to go. Lake Robbins and anything past the Anadarko Bridge along the north edge of Lake Woodlands are off-limits — but aside from that, it’s pretty much free swim in the rest of the lake, as well as the upper and lower waterways. After hours, all bird boats rest in the Riva Row Boat House opposite The Pavilion. [Houston Chronicle; more info] Photo: The Woodlands Township

08/08/18 9:45am

Here’s some of the new plant life that’s just recently sprung up on the bench outside the Mid Main Lofts near Holman St. (top) and at the southwest corner of Main and Winbern streets (above) outside Double Trouble Caffeine & Cocktails. Along with another trio stuck to the identical rusty block on the east side of Main at Winbern, they’ve been literally glued to their seats for the past few days, taking over the 3 public rest areas that appeared along with others adjacent to METRO’s Ensemble/HCC Red Line stop roughly a year ago.

The Midtown Redevelopment Authority — the entity responsible for most of the gardening that goes on in the neighborhood’s public right of wayruled itself out as the planter yesterday morning, saying it’s looking into how the greenery got there in the first place.

Photos: Allyn West

You Can’t Sit With Us
08/08/18 8:30am

Photo of Waugh Dr. Bridge: Marc Longoria via Swamplot Flickr Pool

Headlines