This Concrete Building from 1946 Is Still Hanging Around an East Downtown Corner


Were it nighttime and the glass a bit more seamless, this mod industrial storefront might work as a stand-in for the scene of Edward Hopper’s iconic Nighthawks. The contoured corner hugs the corner of Leeland and St. Emanuel St., a block past the Eastex Fwy. overpass and the eastern border of Downtown. The building’s 4,250 sq. ft. footprint sits on a 5,000-sq.-ft. corner lot in a warehouse-y district within eyeshot of the Toyota Center. It was listed on the MLS for $600K last summer, but has stayed on the market through various relistings since October 2013 for a bit more: $650K.



The front section of the building — which the listing says is made of solid concrete — sports showroom windows. They look north and swing west a bit — when they’re not covered by the exterior’s rollaround steel curtain.


Aqua-trimmed rooms off the interior hallway may correspond to the split-plan “bedroom” and half-bath mentioned in the residential listing.


In the main room there’s plenty of flex-space and storage under all the boxes currently housed on-site:


In addition to paved parking along one side of the building, there’s a 3-car bay of tandem parking behind fencing capped in barbed wire:


HCAD pegs the space under the canopy at 800 sq. ft.



A portion of the building, also aqua-painted, has a different address. It’s home to The Green Bone dog lounge.

Chinatown Printing

16 Comment

  • I love the building and the transom is handsome and it’s next incarnation seems destined to be something yuppie ultimately it will fall as the corner is prime and the multi-family/multi-story townhouse housing march is already underway in a big way nearby.

  • So what will happen to EaDo and all those pioneering hipsters once the city finishes it’s world’s biggest homeless shelter right smack in the middle of it? Once they finish it, they will outlaw panhandling in the city and will herd several thousand vagrants, mentally ill and criminals to that area.

  • Thank you for that, Dana. I like this little building, too.

  • @commonsense – I havnt heard anything on that. I know they want to push some housing to 610 and east of 59, but nothing in an area this developed.

  • It was actually reported here on Swamplot a while back and announced by Major Porker. It’s supposed to go north of 45 around Scott or Cullen. If I recall correctly they already bought the land and were taking bids on construction.

  • Commonsense are you talking about the former old-folks home along the freeway, Magnolia Glen or something like that? At least those homeless will have a place to live so that would/should mean less wandering around and sleeping around; ie; no biggie for the area residents. Are we’re only talking 100-200 or so amid thousands of residents…just enough to create urban eye candy for those who seek a true big-city experience without getting their hands dirty.

  • @commonsense,

    I’m trying to figure out what you are talking about. Is this it?:

  • I’m sure commonsense is referring to Earl Hatcher Commons, formerly known as Magnolia Glen, at the far southeast corner of EaDo. Whatever impacts it has will be more of an Eastwood problem than an EaDo problem – especially the St. Emanuel corridor, which EHC is pretty far from – and if it actually reduces the number of homeless wandering around (OK maybe optimistic) the net impact might be positive.

  • Oh, and I’m not sure the state of the project since the site just burned up recently, if I’m not mistaken.

  • no, no, no, I specifically remember reading an article (perhaps it wasn’t on Swamplot after all) that outlined City of Houston plans on homeless which included a Huge, Ginormous, Humongous homeless shelter east of Downtown and after it’s complete, they will ban panhandling and sleeping in public spaces. Banning panhandlers would have been impossible (or perhaps illegal) until an alternative was provided. It was also supposed to be close to the new east light rail line to transport the said homeless to and from downtown to access public services.

    I’m going to have to find what publication that was in and post a link.

  • Nice little building. As far as Magolia Glen, it falls within EaDo..but it also affects Eastwood. Here’s the latest..

  • This sounds like a variation of Haven For Hope in SA. That has been a disaster for that area, the crime went thru the roof (violent crime), it looks worse than Skid Row in LA. Aggressive Pan Handling out of control and worse they built it right next to UTSA Downtown and the VIA (SA’s version of Metro) Headquarters. You must be off alcohol of drugs to get in and of course like 1 percent of homeless qualify to live there tho they all hang around for the free food etc, it’s become the most dangerous part of the city and it’s like 10 blocks from the RiverWalk–lovely. I lived in the Monte Vista Area that was about 2 miles north and we still would get all these mentally ill vagrants walking thru like unwashed zombies, it was awful. Most were absolutely nuts. I really hope for EaDo’s sake that don’t get one of these disasters, it will absolutely ruin the area, believe me.

  • Shannon does have a good point. Traditional homeless shelters are horrible for neighborhoods. For about a year I worked around MHMRA’s Safe Haven facility, which from what I understand doubles as a day-detox center and overnight shelter. I lived near Sharpstown at the time, I felt infinitely safer in Sharpstown than I did anywhere near the Safe Haven shelter. Maybe I’m weird about that, but I don’t think so. I never saw anyone plunk themselves down on the sidewalk and shoot up in broad daylight in Sharpstown. I did around the corner from Safe Haven. I’ve never had a smash and grab on my office in Sharpstown. I did around the corner from Safe Haven.
    And the sad part is, if you raise concerns about these things in public, suddenly you’re the bad guy. You’re a NIMBY. You’re a bully who picks on those poor homeless people….
    But it seems to me there is a way out. What I refer to as “holistic housing first.” Housing first has as it’s premise that you give the homeless housing as quickly as possible, and the treatment follows. (The opposite of the old fashioned way of requiring them to be drug free first). Holistic housing would add to that by putting on site drug and alcohol rehab, mental health care, a clinic, job placement, GED courses, as well as dining facilities and laundry and transportation and all of that. Keep the residents there, so they don’t wander off and cause problems in the surrounding neighborhood.
    It -should-work. But I must admit, I wouldn’t want to try it near my own home, and I wouldn’t want to impose it on someone else. Maybe, though, it could be something that you request if one of these facilities is proposed for your neighborhood.

  • I see a $20 mercury vapor light hanging off the front of a commercial building with paying tenants. That tells me all I need to know about decades of bare-minimum maintenance and upkeep of electrical, HVAC plumbing, water leaks, etc. No wonder it’s been sitting. Will eventually sell for land value and demo’ed.

  • Didn’t a portion of Magnolia Glen burn down recently?