09/18/14 4:30pm



Crosswalks and No Parking signs related to Reagan High School separate an updated 1920-ish bungalow from the front of campus on 13th St. in the Houston Heights. The residential property includes 2 apartments, located on 2 levels of the still-accessible 3-car garage and its extra-extra wide driveway. The tidy compound backs up to an alley that splits the block, which is located in a section of the Heights East Historic District. Against the home’s recently applied bright blue paint, the freshened exterior’s white trim brightly pops, particularly on the porch’s newish old-style columns and balustrades. Listed on Wednesday, the triplex bears an asking price of $750K.


Compounding Interests
09/18/14 10:30am

THIS COULD BE THE END OF THE HEIGHTS POST OFFICE Heights Finance Station Post Office, 1050 Yale St., Houston HeightsNote: This story has been updated. Late yesterday the US Postal Service announced it is “considering relocating the retail services” from the Heights Finance Station at 1050 Yale St. Under the proposed plan, retail services at the single-story building, which sits on more than an acre of land bounded by Yale, 11th St., and Heights Blvd. would be moved to the T.W. House Carrier Annex at the corner of Bevis and 19th St. in Shady Acres. Does the the announcement mean the Yale St. facility will be closed or sold? “Since the relocation of the station is still in the consideration phase and no final determination has been made, there is no available information about the future of the building,” local USPS spokesperson Dionne Montague tells Swamplot. If you’re seeking better answers, you might want to attend Monday’s planned public meeting on the topic, set for 5 pm at the city hall annex downtown. A 15-day official public comment period will follow the meeting. Photo: Swamplot inbox

09/15/14 3:45pm

734 E. 8th St., Houston Heights

734 E. 8th St., Houston HeightsIf you’re wondering what an expanse of fake grass is doing in the back yard of a $1.345 million home around the corner from Antidote, Premium Draught, and the Sonoma Wine Bar in the Heights, the architect of the 4-bedroom, 3,769-sq.-ft. structure has an answer for you: “The synthetic grass was the owner’s idea, which had my full support,” Cameron Armstrong tells Swamplot, after an email from a reader alerted us to the astroturfing issue. “It’s 100% recycled material, and significantly reduced our landscape irrigation needs,” the architect notes, “which gained the project some points during LEED certification (Silver).”

Ouch! Does learning that last bit give you a brain cramp? If so, you’re not alone:


No Mow
09/10/14 1:45pm

BARNABY’S CAFE IS COMING TO THE HEIGHTS Mockup of Proposed Barnaby's Cafe, 2802 White Oak Dr., Houston HeightsThe spot at 2802 White Oak Dr. from which City Oven and before that D’Amico’s Italian Market Cafe departed will soon be home to the seventh location of Barnaby’s Cafe, reports the Chronicle‘s David Kaplan. Landlord Revive Development produced the mockup of a Barnaby’s sign on the building pictured above. Revive’s Bryan Danna tells Kaplan Barnaby’s signed a lease for the 3,300-sq.-ft. space earlier this month and expects to open by the end of the year. [Houston Chronicle] Photo: Revive Development

09/09/14 11:30am

Boulevard Coffee, 1030 Heights Blvd., Houston Heights

Boulevard Coffee, 1030 Heights Blvd., Houston HeightsThe Heights coffee shop that took over the former Waldo’s Coffee House bungalow on Heights Blvd. just south of 11th St. earlier this year will be shutting down at the end of this month, a reader reports. Boulevard Coffee had opened at 1030 Heights Blvd. in March of this year. A note taped to the shop’s cash register (at right) tells customers the story. Photos: Laura H. (patio view); Swamplot inbox (note)

The Last Drop
09/02/14 4:30pm



To create some buzz about an updated 1929 cottage with bumble bee trim tones in a section of the Heights dubbed Pinelawn, viewing of the property was put on hold until the weekend, several days after its listing last month for $437,500. Tiers of patios, porches, decks, and pavers help extend the living space outdoors. The fully-fenced corner compound is located up the block from Field Elementary School.


Clocking in at $437,500
08/25/14 11:00am

Zelko Bistro, 705 E. 11th St., Houston Heights

Zelko Bistro, 705 E. 11th St., Houston HeightsLast week Judge Randy Wilson (yes, the same judge who ruled earlier this year in the Ashby Highrise case) granted a temporary injunction preventing the owner of the converted bungalow at 705 E. 11th St. from locking out or evicting Zelko Bistro — or putting a for lease sign in front of the Heights restaurant (as caught in the photo at right from last month). Zelko was required to post a bond equal to a single month’s rent under the previous lease; the ruling requires the restaurant’s owners to comply with the terms of that lease as well.


Still Serving
08/19/14 1:15pm

Substation Expansion, 612 Yale St., Houston Heights

Without making a big alert-the-neighbors fuss about it, CenterPoint Energy appears to have begun expanding the electrical substation across the street from the new Alexan Heights apartment complex going up on Yale St. into an adjacent vacant lot, a reader reports. Crews began breaking up the 6,600-sq.-ft. lot’s concrete surface yesterday. CenterPoint has owned the lot at 612 Yale St. since 2004, according to county tax records, though the neighboring 6th and Yale Collision and Repair shop had often used it as parking space.

The lot appears at the top center of this recent aerial view of apartment construction and the substation:


Not Shocking
07/31/14 1:45pm


It might look like a neighboring property (in the background of the photo above) towers over an updated 1926 bungalow on Heights Blvd., but the addition is actually part of the mixed-use complex. Balcony-wrapped, the modernish appendage mashes up with yesteryear’s residential front-end, which is currently employed as a law office. The switched dual personalities (and dual purposes) co-exist behind a wrought-iron fence on the southbound side of Houston Heights’ main drag. Listed Tuesday, the combo offering has a $2,101,948 asking price.


Heights Face, Yale Face
07/22/14 5:00pm




Without its stylized pediment and lip of aging awning, a funky mixed use property in Houston Heights is just a boxy building, its stucco in fading 1984 hues of seafoam green and coral. Inside, though, a more modern vibe takes hold (top) above studio space occupying the entire ground floor (middle). In its listing last week, the updated work-live pad’s asking price was $665,000.


Paint it Black
07/22/14 4:15pm

ZELKO BISTRO: WE’RE NOT GONE YET Zelko Bistro, 705 E. 11th St., Houston HeightsWas the “for lease” sign (at right) posted and then removed this morning in front of Zelko Bistro at 705 E. 11th St. just part of a high-stakes lease-extension negotiation? Responding to reports that her restaurant is a goner from the Heights location and that the converted bungalow is available “immediately,” owner Jamie Zelko reports it’s all part of . . . the process? Here’s the latest from the restaurant’s Twitter account this afternoon: “Hello everyone. We are currently in negotiations to exercise our option to renew our lease. We should come to agreement soon!” [Twitter] Photo: The Heights Life

07/22/14 11:15am

ZELKO BISTRO IS SOON TO BE GONE FROM E. 11TH ST. Zelko Bistro, 705 E. 11th St., Houston HeightsA real estate agent representing the owners of the building at 705 E. 11th St. just west of Studewood tells neighborhood blog The Heights Life that the converted bungalow home of restaurant Zelko Bistro is available for lease, “effective immediately.” For the moment at least, Jamie Zelko’s restaurant is still open for business, but “Zelko will be moving out,” the blog reports. “[Berkshire Hathaway Suzanne Anderson Properties agent Mike Huff] doesn’t know when and can’t disclose much about why, but whether they close or re-locate is uncertain.” The for-lease sign that appeared this morning in front of the property (above) has been removed at the restaurant’s request. [The Heights Life] Photo: The Heights Life

07/18/14 1:45pm

Did the tiny bench-and-planters installation now parked in front of a Heights mattress store strike a nerve for some Swamplot readers? Judging from the comments section for some of Swamplot’s coverage of the project, that certainly does appear to be the case. But it looks like the PR firm charged with promoting the city of Houston’s first officially permitted parklet is set on tapping that nerve as if it were a gold mine. The video above, just posted to YouTube by the Black Sheep Agency, shows purported actual Heights residents performing dramatic readings of Swamplot readers’ more entertaining comments about the parklet, which now blocks access to what was formerly a single angled, head-in parking space in front of the firm’s client, the New Living Bedroom store at 321 W. 19th St. (New Living paid for construction of the parklet and is responsible for maintaining it, according to an agreement with the city, which considers the effort a pilot program.)


Tempest in a Heights Parking Space