Got an answer to any of these reader questions? Or just want to be a sleuth for Swamplot? Here’s your chance! Add your report in a comment, or send a note to our tipline.
- Galveston: Watercolor artist Don Springer, who makes a habit of rendering area oddities, wants to know more about the Galveston Kettle House on the San Luis Pass between Pirates Beach and Pirates Beach West he painted a few weekends ago. “I know that it was not the radio station KUFO which once broadcasted from the foot of the Flagship (That flying saucer is now a house on West Beach).” He passes on a story he heard from “credible sources” that the half-water-tower turned house was the home of a landscaper who recently passed away, but asks, “Can you use your unlimited resourses, connections, and talent to determine the history of this landmark before it rolls off into the sunset?” Readers? He’s talking to you.
- Montrose: Chronicle tech guy Dwight Silverman wants to know what’s going into the building at 1721 Waugh, just south of the Commonwealth split; at about the same time, another Swamplot reader sends us this recent pic of what looks to be a refacing job on the building:
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A “before” view, from when the building was on the market, last year:
- Montrose: Just a half-mile to the south, a reader sends in photos of construction work taking place on California St. “in the previously vacant lot between Waugh and Commonwealth, behind the Westheimer shopping center that includes Radio Shack and Scoot. It appears to be something of substantial size, or they have to put in utilities, because the ground has been dug out several feet deep on a large part of the lot.” The pix:
Yes, that’s everyone’s favorite, the Tremont Tower, in the background of that last photo.
- Houston Heights: Another reader sends in pix (below) of some of the action on the giant block bounded by Rutland, Nicholson, 25th, and 26th streets: “Neighbors are clueless about all the demolition, digging, hauling at the National Flame and Forge and the Foundation Steel and Wire sites. No sign of soil remediation, so maybe this will be the next Walmart site? Any Swampers know what’s up?”
- Gulfton: After dropping off some recycling at the Westpark Recycling Center, another reader gets curious about the two “pretty dilapidated” 6-story office buildings with attached parking garages nearby perched on the 59 feeder at 5821 Southwest Fwy. At the top of the western tower is a sign that says “City Mortgage”:
A google search tells me there was a company called City Mortgage that was defrauding hispanic homeowners through a debt-reduction service. The courts got to them in 2005. Not sure if it’s the same company, but the building stands there, forlorn and rather scary-looking with those mirrored windows.
Photos taken from the Westpark side: