At least 2 tenants of the Wilshire Village garden apartments have received eviction notices from the owner, demanding that they vacate the property by the end of February, a source tells Swamplot. The notices, which were signed by Commerce Equities president Matthew Dilick, say that electricity at the property will be turned off after that date. Swamplot’s source also says that the city’s Public Works department is aware of plans for the site.
Wilshire Village is the classically modern but now classically decrepit yellow-brick complex at the southwest corner of West Alabama and Dunlavy, across from Fiesta. The 17 buildings were designed by local architect Eugene Werlin and completed in 1940. Wilshire Village hit a downward spiral in more recent years under the peculiar supervision of its previous owner, who reportedly fought off throngs of eager potential tenants in order to keep the 144-unit complex largely vacant — then declared bankruptcy in 2002 when he was unable to pay the taxes on the property.
Although reports that the 8-acre complex would be demolished have circulated for years, the timing of these eviction notices is a bit of a surprise, given problems other developers are currently having securing construction loans. Equally surprising to many others who have driven past the run-down apartments recently is news that actual tenants are still living there.
In 2005, Dilick announced he would be creating a new master plan for the property, which would include a residential tower of up to 16 stories. More recently, the Houston Business Journal reported that the company planned to put a mid-rise apartment building on the site. Commerce Equities was the developer recently of the stilted Bayou on the Bend apartments on Memorial Drive.
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- Wilshire Village [Chelsea Hotel No. 2]