- 5231 Contour Pl. [HAR]
Noticed that striking Meyerland Mod headlining our demolition report this morning? The 1956 home at 4815 Braesvalley Dr. first came to Swamplot’s attention 9 years ago, as the site of a remarkable scene. The then-86-year-old architect Lars W. Bang, a prolific purveyor of Modern Houston homes, was driven to the property in hopes that the real estate agent listing the 4-bedroom property might confirm that he was indeed its designer. “My husband, Jim, helped him out of the car and invited him into the house,” Meg Zoller wrote, “but Mr. Bang’s knees aren’t what they used to be . . . and he just wanted to stand out front and look at the house. After some time he decided that he could not confidently say whether the home was one of his designs or not.”
Bang passed away the following year, but not before his authorship of 4815 Braesvalley was confirmed. (It turned out his name was on a set of plans kept by the Meyerland Homeowner’s Association.) Writing in the next edition of the Houston Architectural Guide, Stephen Fox labeled it a home that “rescues Meyerland from being boring.” The plan contains 3 courtyard spaces, one of them now topped by a screen roof:
Hitting the market late last week in the neighborhoods of Meyerland and of $425,000: a groovy 1970s home a few doors down Lymbar Dr. from soon-to-be-renamed Johnston Middle School, northeast of the intersection of Willowbend Blvd. with Chimney Rock Dr. The living room of the 2,362-sq.-ft. house features a round concrete fireplace amid wood paneling and sealed brick floors; a shower-side planter setup makes appearances in the master suite’s bathroom.
Here’s the cantilevered porch and striped front door a the top of the home’s circular driveway:
A few folks at the Halstead apartments surveyed the scene along Brays Bayou late yesterday morning, catching sight of all kinds of action in the water. The video above captures the part of the lonely journey of an unmoored porta-potty floating away from the site of the under-construction Starbucks on the former gas station corner next door; the trip was also also tracked from further upstairs in the complex, where another photographer was documenting the flood:
Here’s this morning’s view north across S. Braeswood Dr. between Chimney Rock and Hillcroft in Meyerland, where Brays Bayou has once again been feeling out some alternate route options. That’s the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue and the closed-for-the-day Shlenker School across the water on the northern bank, looking higher but not that much drier; current reaadings for the nearest upstream county gauge show nearly 8 inches of rain over the last 12 hours, with higher totals further west. That hasn’t stopped some folks from checking things out from close-up:
An early morning post-deconstruction photo of the Mullins Dr. campus of the Medical Center Charter School (originally the St. Nicholas School, when the campus was private), just north of the Centerpoint transmission easement paralleling Willowbend Blvd. half a block to the south, was snapped by a reader yesterday. A representative of the school tells Swamplot that the 4-ish-acre property has been sold, and that townhomes are apparently in the works for the land.
A pile of dirt is heaped up at the northeast corner of N. Braeswood Blvd and the West Loop feeder road this afternoon, next to a sign announcing the upcoming arrival of a Starbucks to the site. The lot held a Citgo station before demolition in mid-2013; a reader notes that construction crews have been poking around at the site for at least the past 3 weeks.
The blocky facade of the Halstead apartment complex can been seen in the background of the above snapshot — down the street to the east, the Halstead and next-door Meritage complex are slowly being joined by a midrise residential development going up at the corner of N. Braeswood and Frankway. East of that is a Proguard Storage facility and the Southwest Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Raised 5 feet on piers, this 1-story, 4-bedroom single family home lifts potential home owners above the din, as well as the Brays Bayou floodplain. The listing proclaims that the 1959 building did not flood during Memorial Day weekend last year; the house went on the market a few days before Christmas for $975K. A lift is available on the side of the front patio (above) for those disinclined towards stairs:
A reader snapped a few shots of construction over at 8877 Frankway Dr.: a midrise apartment complex taking shape in a long-vacant strip of land next door to the Houston Orthodontics building and a ProGuard public storage facility, just west of where S. Braeswood jumps across Brays Bayou to become N. Braeswood. The project will fall into a row with the next-door Meritage and freeway-adjacent Halstead apartment complexes to the west, both on N. Braeswood between Frankway and the West Loop. Just east of the Proguard facility is the Southwest Wastewater Treatment Plant, which accidentally released nearly 100,000 gallons of raw sewage into Brays Bayou and the surrounding area during this year’s Memorial Day flooding.
A crane is on the scene, and some preformed concrete segments have been trucked in:
WESTBURY CENTERETTE SITE WILL REMAIN DRY Hot off the presses from the latest Westbury Crier — amid reports on the aftermath of May’s bayou overflow events, which flooded 267 homes in the neighborhood: An update on the status of the site of the former Westbury Centerette at the corner of W. Bellfort and Chimney Rock, which was demolished in March. “Originally,” the newsletter reports, “the property owner planned to construct a facility for LA Fitness; however, we regret to announce that this plan will not proceed. The property owner continues to evaluate options for the site.” [Westbury Crier; previously on Swamplot] Video of Westbury Centerette demolition: Brays Oaks Management District
Ferns grace the interior wallcoverings (top) as well as the exterior landscaping of this 1961 custom mod in Marilyn Estates. Listed at $509K, the home presents a gated and landscaped courtyard entry (above) off the cul-de-sac of a street located a block south of Brays Bayou and west of Chimney Rock Rd. The walkway to the doubled front door is covered, but the adjacent open garden with fountain and sculpture provides a private outdoor space for rooms that face it on 3 sides of the home’s U-shaped floor plan: