A Swamplot reader notes that 7 variances signs recently cropped up all at once on 5 adjacent blocks in the Second Ward. Each one indicates a request for the same thing: to chop up the properties into lots less than 3,500-sq.-ft. each so that new townhomes can rise on them. (Some include more specific requests too, like shuffling around parking and scooting certain homes closer to the roads.) Taken together, 127 new homes would be spread across just under 4 acres in the area, bounded Sampson and Milby streets to the east and west — and Garrow and Commerce to the north and south.
Some houses would fill in the gaps between warehouse buildings and cottages, while others would take their spots:
That’s the O’Reilly Auto Parts store viewed from Everton St. in the photo above. It lies at the northwestern elbow of the colony Lovett now wants to plant on the block:
Four existing houses to be wrapped by the development would go untouched. But 3 south of Sherman St. would not:
Additional plans call for 27 more townhomes on the block directly west of O’Reilly occupied by its own warehouse building (pictured behind the variance sign), another 27 on the mostly-vacant block bounded by Sherman, Hutcheson, York, and Garrow, and 42 on the block just west of it on York St. — home to the Viking Fence Company complex.
All the plans go up for consideration before the city’s planning commission next Thursday.
Photos: Swamplox inbox. Maps: Houston Planning Commission