03/17/17 11:00am

Hot Bagel Shop at 2015 S. Shepherd Dr., Vermont Commons, Houston, 77006

Former Hot Bagel Shop on S. Shepherd Dr., Vermont Commons, Houston, 77006The long predicted southerly shift of The Hot Bagel Shop has come to pass: a banner above the endcap of the wavy new commercial strip at 2015 S. Shepherd Dr. proclaims the spot now open, and the old location is all wrapped up in white paper and cardboard. The far corner on the first floor of the new shopping center — purportedly part 1 of 2 — is occupied by Zen Japanese Izakaya, but the other units in the 2-story structure appear to be, as yet, vacant:


Fresh Baked on S. Shepherd
12/07/15 4:15pm

Fly High Little Bunny, W. 19th St., Heights, Houston, 77008

The sign isn’t up yet, but sales are already taking off: Fly High Little Bunny commenced regular business hours yesterday at its new location on W. 19th St. and Rutland, following Saturday’s opening for the Holiday in the Heights shopping event. The former Shepherd landmark left its old storefront at the corner of W. Alabama earlier this year to make way for a CVS and pad site.

Photo: Swamplot inbox

Flight From West Alabama
04/30/15 5:00pm

Fly High Little Bunny, 301 W. 19th St., Houston Heights

Fly High Little Bunny, 301 W. 19th St., Houston HeightsRunaway Shepherd St. jeweler Fly High Little Bunny has marked up the former Occasions Fine Gifts shop at the corner of Rutland and 19th St. in the Heights as its future home. A separate note posted to the store’s Facebook page late last week indicated that the new location at 301 W. 19th St. wouldn’t be open “for a month or so.

Photos: Swamplot inbox

19th St. Retail
03/05/15 11:00am

Barbara Jordan Post Office, 401 Franklin St., Downtown Houston

A reader who maintains a post office box at the Barbara Jordan Post Office at 401 Franklin St. Downtown has forwarded Swamplot a notice that showed up with the mail earlier this week, inviting box renters to a “town hall” meeting about the upcoming move of post office services at the facility. “Our projected move date is fast approaching,” the flyer reads — though it doesn’t identify when it will be.


Barbara Jordan P.O.
10/31/14 11:45am

Finding a seat in the latest round of musical chairs among Houston’s theater crowd is the Classical Theatre Company, which recently announced it is moving operations into the 175-seat Chelsea Market venue vacated by Main Street Theater earlier this year. For the previously nomadic CTC, the space means a more permanent home for its artists and audiences — as well as a single spot for its offices, storage, rehearsals, and performances.

Main Street Theater, which has a Rice Village venue on Times Blvd. readying for a long-awaited renovation, had rented the Chelsea Market space for its Theater for Youth and educational programming since 1996. Youth activities shifted recently to the Talento Bilingue de Houston center at 333 S. Jensen Dr. That move had been prompted by the kickoff of work on the recently re-christened 20-story apartment project fronting Chelsea Blvd. (The Carter, formerly known as Chelsea Montrose), which took a big bite out of a once-extensive parking area.


Stage Shuffle
09/30/14 12:00pm

Former Kuko's Taqueria, Future Teotihuacan Mexican Cafe, 3707 Irvington Blvd., Near Northside, Houston

Former Kuko's Taqueria, Future Teotihuacan Mexican Cafe, 3707 Irvington Blvd., Near Northside, HoustonThe Teotihuacán Mexican Café at the corner of Irvington and Cavalcade (now helpfully labeled “Festively adorned Tex-Mex restaurant” on Zagat-powered Google Maps) will be relocating a few blocks south once renovations to a structure the 3-restaurant chain’s owners purchased in late May can be completed. Kuko’s Taqueria shut down at 3707 Irvington Blvd., between Alber St. and Collingsworth, this past June. It appears some work on the interior is already taking place, notes reader Christopher Andrews.

Photos: Christopher Andrews

Going South
09/23/14 10:15am

Fire at Spanky's Homemade Pizza and Bar, 7210 South Loop East, Gulfgate, Houston

A fire that broke out in the kitchen of Spanky’s Homemade Pizza early this morning did considerable damage to the structure, reports Click2Houston’s Courtney Gilmore. But if you’re wondering about the “kitchen staff wanted” sign posted outside, or how owner Frank Roache could possibly declare on camera that the restaurant, which has been open on the South Loop feeder road at Woodridge only since 1976, would be “back up and running in about 6 weeks,” here’s a little background:

The much larger Gabby’s Bar-B-Que next door to Spanky’s at 4659 Telephone Rd. closed down earlier this year.


Scooting Over to Telephone Rd.
07/22/14 1:15pm

Former Houston Post Building, 4747 Southwest Fwy., Houston

Yesterday afternoon’s news came couched in pillowy fluff: Houston’s largest news-gathering organization will be moving to an exciting new state-of-the-art facility in the Galleria area! No, the Houston Chronicle isn’t leaving the heart of the city it covers: Key reporters will remain downtown!

But here’s a rougher-edged reading of the newspaper’s apparent retreat: The Hearst Corporation is getting ready to sell off one of its most valuable Houston assets — a block and a half of prime Downtown real estate — so it’s telling Chron editorial staffers to find room for themselves somewhere in or around the austere 440,000-sq.-ft. concrete fort where the company’s distribution, circulation, local sales, and press operations have been camping out, on 21 acres in the lower right armpit formed by the intersection of Hwy. 59 and Loop 610.

The former Houston Post compound at 4747 Southwest Fwy. (above), designed by Wilson, Morris, Crain & Anderson in 1970 as a stark Brutalist follow-up to their work on the Astrodome, was part of the booty obtained by the Chronicle when it bought out its rival paper in 1995. The announcement calls the complex its “future campus,” but the extent of renovations or any new construction planned on the site is unclear.

What about that downtown foothold the paper is promising?


A Newspaper Retreat
04/02/14 2:15pm

2244 Welch St., Vermont Commons, Houston

2244 Welch St., Vermont Commons, HoustonThere’s what looks to be a moving truck parked in front of the home at 2244 Welch St. today, right next door to the building site at 2229 San Felipe St., where a giant crane is already in the process of constructing a 17-story Hines office building across the street from River Oaks. UH professor Richard Armstrong, who with his family rented the home, had complained to the media last month that the continual noise and diesel fumes and earth-moving going on next door was making it difficult to live there. A couple weeks later, Armstrong announced that financial assistance from Hines would help him move to a new home in Pearland. “This individual story may have ended,” a neighbor notes to Swamplot, “but there are many more neighbors left to deal with the ongoing noise and construction paraphernalia.”

Photos: Swamplot inbox

River Oaks Neighbors
03/27/14 12:00pm

MICRO CENTER WILL MOVE SOUTH, GIVE UP WEST LOOP SITE FOR AMEGY BANK HQ Micro Center, 1717 West Loop South, HoustonConfirming a pair of reports published on Swamplot last month, Amegy Bank announced today that it is buying the 4-acre lot currently occupied by computer retailer Micro Center at 1717 West Loop South, just north of San Felipe, to build a new corporate headquarters. The designer of the coming 350,000-sq.-ft. Amegy complex is Pickard Chilton, the New Haven architect behind downtown’s BG Group Place, among other Houston structures. Amegy will keep its downtown offices, but move its corporate offices and Galleria banking center across the freeway to the new building. But Micro Center won’t be exiting Houston. It’ll move later this year to an unspecified new location “near the 610 Loop and Highway 59 Southwest Freeway interchange.” [Houston Business Journal; previously on SwamplotPhoto: Nick Juhasz

03/24/14 11:00am

View of Home with Highrise Construction Crane Next Door, 2244 Welch St., Vermont Commons, Houston

The UH professor whose experiences living next door to the vacant-lot-turned-highrise-construction-site across the southern border of River Oaks made for a colorful teevee news report and an EPA complaint has called an end to his protests of the rumbling, diesel fumes, and building and patio cracks caused by the giant crane that showed up next door (pictured above). With an unspecified amount of financial assistance from Hines, the developers of the 17-story office tower going up at 2229 San Felipe, Richard Armstrong and his family will be moving from 2244 Welch St. to a new home in Pearland early next month.

His media appearances “got the attention of Hines and Gilbane Construction,” Armstrong reports in a letter posted to an online news group focusing on the tower’s construction. “Fundamentally, there isn’t much that can be done,” he writes, “given the pace and scale of this construction. . . . We have loved this house and the neighborhood — up until December. This is a wonderful pocket for people who want access to everything the inner loop has to offer. Unfortunately, other people are discovering our secret. So we’ll just have to roll with the changes.

It appears that Armstrong’s “roll” will be bankrolled — at least in part — by Hines.


Neighbors Helping Neighbors — To Move Away
03/19/14 2:45pm

River Oaks Glass, 2635 Greenbriar Dr., Upper Kirby, Houston

Proprietor Tim Linehan wants to make sure longtime and potential customers who noted the smashing of the former River Oaks Glass location at 2219 Richmond Ave. in a Swamplot Daily Demolition Report last week don’t think the company has been pulled apart by excavators as well. The company with the “We Fix Humpty Dumpty” sign in the front window escaped to a new converted residence last month — one that’s a full half-mile closer to the actual River Oaks. It had been leasing the Richmond Ave. building for 17 years. “You have not lived until you’ve moved a crystal and porcelain repair shop, piece by piece,” he tells Swamplot. The new spot is a former bungalow at 2635 Greenbriar, just south of Westheimer. This time, says Linehan, “we bought the place and will never move again.”

Photo: James Timothy Linehan

House Broken
11/05/12 4:58pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: WON’T GET MOVED AGAIN “The move out procedure has been pretty crazy so far. You have to go and schedule your move out date (down to a 4hr window) to qualify for any of the incentives (a month of rent back) if they catch you moving outside of the window they claim they could hold out on the incentive. You have to make the move out appointment soon, i.e. in the next couple days. What we found was that it made for a difficult time finding a new place given the strong rental market right now. My family member is on a fixed income, so we needed cheap with easy bus access. We got her in to Maryland Manor, on Bissonnet, should be a stable community for awhile, and they had lots of space.” [MH005, commenting on 4444 Westheimer Residents To Be Gently Escorted from Their Domiciles]