- 5919 Benning Dr. [HAR]
Yesterday demo crews began tearing down 2 buildings at Westbury Square, the once-quaint pedestrian shopping district at West Bellfort and Chimney Rock that in recent decades has been overtaken by a combination of bigger-box retailing (see the Home Depot lurking in the background of the photo at left) and neglect. Long-dilapidated Buildings 1 and 5 at 635 Westbury Sq. are being removed under an agreement with the city after a longstanding battle over a “repair or demolish” order, according to the Westbury Area Improvement Corporation. But owner Alfred Antonini still has 9 other 1962-vintage buildings standing on the property, according to appraisal district records.
A modified 1959 mod home with tinted clerestory in Westbury has changed hands 5 times in 8 years — after decades with the same owner. Last week, the now-even-more-open-plan property appeared on the market once more, this time with a $425,000 asking price. It last sold in March 2013 for $348,000. Back in 2005, before all the flipping and renovations, it sold for $152,367. Other sales scored $129,000, $374,990, and $389,000. Somewhere in that chain of ownership came a big fan of glass-panel doors. They’re installed throughout the home, starting with the living room (above).
Windows and mirrors in a 1961 Westbury home’s well-hinged front room make it possible to look out and in at the same time. The cerulean-hued space off the entry hall can also swing between uses. It’s a living room now, but shows up in the listing specs as a dining room. A $5K reduction last week brought the asking price for this tidy property to $155,000; it first appeared on the market in August.
Royce White might never have suited up for the Houston Rockets, spending most of his rookie season toiling in the D-League with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and — umm, tweeting, but it appears he has found a way to contribute to the city. Last week, White — who suffers from generalized anxiety disorder — announced that his foundation, Anxious Mind’s, which he started when he was playing college ball at Iowa State, will partner with Bee Busy Wellness Clinic to open a free mental health facility on W. Bellfort. The clinic will also provide dental services and primary care and will open this January inside the Rubik’s Cube-like former Frank Neighborhood Library at 6440 W. Bellfort, shown here, just west of Westbury and Meyerland. White played in only 16 games last season; he was caught up in disputes with Rockets management about travel arrangements — he hates to fly — and team doctors. In July, he was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers.
Photo: Allyn West
It’s a square route through the entry of a modified 1960 Westbury mod, described in its listing on Tuesday as a giveaway prize from a bygone Parade of Homes. The interior plays up its remaining original elements, such as the tile mural found in the front-and-central entry (top) — which the listing claims was featured in the old Arts & Architecture magazine. Another exercise in symmetry comes from the 2 garages sandwiching the recessed front door (above).
In Westbury, a 1965 home overlooking the medianed roadway out front punches up its mostly bloom-free elevation with a little hydrangea-tinted trim. For the property’s real color explosion, however, head inside, where in place of a stagnant, unifying hue, (most) rooms go boldly into the spectrum.
NEIGHBORS GLAD TO SEE WESTBURY ‘EYESORE’ GO Appearing in the Daily Demolition Report a week ago, this house at 5822 Cartagena St. met its unmaker yesterday. Teevee reporter Erik Barajas reports that the 2,500-sq.-ft. Westbury home located between Hillcroft and Chimney Rock in Southwest Houston had allowed “drinkers and critters to roam free inside” and annoyed neighbors, who gathered to document the destruction with cell phones: “[I'm] really happy,” Becky Edmondson tells Barajas. “The home has been in disrepair for years. It was stalled in court with a tax sale. . . . [It had] rodents, it was open, it wasn’t secured, the roof was caving in. It was just really a bad eyesore.” Barajas adds that the property has sold and a new home is planned. [abc13; previously on Swamplot] Photo: abc13
COMMENT OF THE DAY: HAVE I GOT TREES FOR YOU “One miserable tree in the entire 10,500 sq. ft. yard. I’ve heard that home buyers hate landscaping, but this is ridiculous. How ’bout a few bald cypress on the west side to cut down utility bills? A few live oaks in the front would be nice. A few water oaks in the back would be interesting, or go crazy and make it Shumard oaks. Even a mass planting of pink muhly could go somewhere; to hell with the neighbors put ‘em in the front! I’ll stop now.” [Chef, commenting on Houston Home Listing Photo of the Day: Glacier Bay]
COMMENT OF THE DAY: SCRAPPING IT ALL — OR NOT — IN WESTBURY “So I have a home in Westbury that I purchased in the $190 range. It’s ok shape but I am living in another home inside the loop. As I am interested in a larger home and can’t find an affordable lot inside the loop, I am considering demoing my Westbury home and rebuilding on that lot. Does anyone have an opinion on this? I am only aware of one other Westbury new build from 2006. I love the neighborhood, I just need more space. Another option I am considering is building a second story to the existing home. Thoughts?” [Westbury Owner, commenting on A Londoners’ Guide to the Westbury Land Rush]
FORT BEND PARKWAY WILL GROW SOUTH, STAY AWAY FROM THE LOOP The Fort Bend County Toll Road Association plans to start construction of a $20 million, 2.3-mile southern extension of the Fort Bend Parkway from Hwy. 6 to the Sienna Parkway later this year. (The Hwy. 6 underpass will cost an additional $20 million). Plans to to build a 3-mile-long northern extension the Fort Bend Parkway — from Rte. 90A through Westbury, so it connects to the southwest corner of the 610 Loop — have been on the books for more than a decade, but Harris County officials aren’t interested in building it. [Houston Chronicle] Map: HCTRA