09/12/13 4:45pm

It appears that Hines and Ziegler Cooper have changed their plans a bit for that 33-story mixed-use tower to go catty-corner from Market Square Park. The new drawing at the top was submitted earlier today to the Historical Commission; the drawing at the bottom, you’ll remember, was the original.

Additionally, the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to build here in the historic Main Street Market Square District also includes 2 full elevations of the building — described as a 25-story, 289-unit apartment tower perched atop an 8-story podium, with 7 levels of parking and ground-floor retail:


08/22/13 4:30pm

Hines and Ziegler Cooper have presented this drawing (and several maps and site plans) to the Historical Commission in their bid to build a 33-story residential tower on the Downtown block bound by Preston, Prairie, Main, and Travis, catty-corner from Market Square Park. Unfortunately, there’s no image available of the whole thing. (You’ll have to extrapolate upward, as they say.) But the application materials for a Certificate of Appropriateness to build in the Main Street Market Square historic district show that the once-rumored tower would comprise 25 stories and 289 residential units atop a 7-level podium parking garage atop 1 level of retail on the street.

That parking garage would be accessed from Travis St., right next to Frank’s Pizza and the former Cabo spot. (Which will become El Big Bad soon enough.) The tower, as drawn, appears to inch toward this block’s other buildings: There’s Georgia’s Market in the old Byrd’s Department Store on the corner, the 1924 Alfred C. Finn-designed State National Bank Building and the 1925 Public National Bank Building, all of which face Main St.

After the jump, you can see a site plan:


08/02/13 3:15pm

EL GRAN MALO TO OPEN ENGLISH-LANGUAGE VERSION DOWNTOWN It must be that like attracts like: Another restaurant is getting ready to open near Market Square Park, reports Culturemap’s Eric Sandler: This time, it’s El Big Bad, a Downtown translation of the original El Gran Malo at 2307 Ella Blvd in Shady Acres. El Big Bad will take up that corner pocket at 419 Travis most recently vacated by Pepper Jack’s (and Cabo before that) on the block bound by Preston, Prairie, Main, and Travis — that’s where Hines has said it just might build a residential tower and across Travis from where the 41-story Gensler-designed International Tower just might be going up too. [Culturemap; previously on Swamplot] Photo of former Pepper Jack’s: H-Town in Pics

07/30/13 3:45pm

A reader sends Swamplot what appears to be the first rendering of the Gensler-designed International Tower: What has been tentatively described as a 41-story, 750,000-sq.-ft. office building, developed by Stream Realty and Essex Commercial Properties, would go up on a Linbeck-owned block Downtown that now is a surface parking lot bound by Preston, Prairie, Milam, and Travis; it’s immediately south of Market Square Park and immediately west of where Hines has said it is considering building another residential highrise. The reader adds that the first 2 floors of the new tower would be devoted to retail and what appears to be a restaurant; construction could begin as early as next year.

Image: Gensler

06/27/13 10:00am

HINES INTERESTED IN BUILDING RESIDENTIAL TOWER ON DOWNTOWN BLOCK NEAR MARKET SQUARE PARK Culturemap reports that Hines is under contract to buy up a Downtown block and is planning a residential tower. How big a residential tower? Ralph Bivins doesn’t say. The block is bound by Prairie, Preston, Travis, and Main, catty-corner from Market Square Park; it’s directly across Preston from street artist Gonzo247’s Treebeards mural. It’s unclear from Bivins’s report whether Hines would build on the entire block and tear down the existing buildings — which include Frank’s Pizza and the recently closed Pepper Jack’s (and closed Cabo before that). If it seems as though Hines has been busy of late, it’s because Hines has been busy of late: The developer has also said it’s considering building a 20- or 22-story residential tower next to the Asia Society Texas Center, a 17-story office building off San Felipe, an apartment complex at the old Westheimer Cafe Adobe site, and a 41-story office tower at 609 Main. Update, 2:15 p.m.: A rep from Hines says that, though it’s too early to comment on the details of the proposed “multifamily development,” it would replace only the surface parking lot on the block in question. [Culturemap; Houstonia Magazine; previously on Swamplot] Photo of Market Square Park: Swamplot inbox