This photo, looking
northwest northeast from BB’s Cafe catty corner at the intersection of White Oak and Studewood on the western border of the Woodland Heights, shows construction on the former gas station where serial Heights-area restaurant opener Ken Bridge plans to piece together his latest spot, The El Cantina Superior. Bridge, the initiating force behind Lola, the Shepherd Park Draught House, Witchcraft Tavern & Provisions (and Dragon Bowl before that), and the growing Pink’s Pizza chain, hasn’t bothered to get rid of all of the Conoco fixin’s onsite — there’s the canopy angled slightly toward the streetcorner, which is being incorporated into the new building under construction around and under it. And the sign for The El, which has been up on the site well in advance of construction, hoods the gas station logo but still shows the per-gallon pricing slots of the predecessor’s liquid offerings.
Photo: Swamplot inbox
Fill ’Er Up!
A reader sends in this photo of the Oak Forest Mobil at Ella and 1201 W. 43rd St., the death sentence of which was published in the Daily Demolition Report last Thursday. Once the station’s torn down, reports the reader, a Berryhill Baja Grill will be built on this corner; that’s according to a post the reader saw on the members-only Oak Forest Homeowners Association Facebook page. A bit more evidence: A since-deleted brief that appeared in the Houston Chronicle in March 2012 notes that Berryhill had been granted a sales permit at this address.
Photo: Swamplot inbox
COMMENT OF THE DAY: ODE TO THE FAMILY GAS STATION, RECENTLY DEPARTED “Yes, it was a sad day. I’ll have a hard time driving down 14th street from now on. I shed a few tears seeing it knocked down. To the [commenter] who suggested it be moved to the park –– it was offered but no takers.
Grandpa’s dad owned the property and grandpa Fred Schauer began running the station when he was a kid (before he was 16 I think). I remember when he got his 50 years Gulf pin. He ran the station from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. six days a week. But then Gulf stopped delivering to independents who couldn’t support giant tankers and giant loads of gas. That was the beginning of the end. My uncle ran it with some generic gas for a few years after that but the gas market had irrevocably changed.
That station has been closed for many years now and despite the quaint ideas how it might be used (I’ve had a few myself), the business realities today are different. (Just ask the MAM’s ladies what renovations are required for a permanent location for a snowcone shop and you’ll soon understand.)
Both Fred and Hazel have been gone for many years now and the property passed on. This isn’t about greedy real estate developers just realities. Property values soar, taxes soar, maintenance soars, and land use changes. People don’t buy an expensive piece of land to live in a 1100 sf house. The two small adjoining houses will be demolished as well and I’m sure I’ll morbidly drive over to see.
I’m sure the new owners will build a lovely home, and I sincerely hope they’re happy there.” [twyla davis, commenting on The End for the Historic Heights Schauer Filling Station?] Illustration: Lulu