Your Guide to This Weekend’s Dangerous Building Demolition Extravaganza

Where are all the demolitions scheduled to take place Saturday, in Houston’s annual mass celebration of destruction? Reader Ed from Westbury has put together a handy-dandy map using BatchGeo that shows the locations of the buildings targeted by the city’s Neighborhood Protection department that have received demolition permits since last Friday. There should be more than 400 in there. Is your favorite condemned building missing from the map? Ed promises to update it over the weekend with any permits taken out today. Click here to see a larger version.

Map: Ed from Westbury

15 Comment

  • Interesting that not one on the map is West of 45/288 and inside the loop.

  • So how does Neighborhood Protection dispose of the property after the building is demolished? Is it just sold to whoever will pay taxes on it or held on to for some vaporware “redevelopment”?

  • This makes me queezy. I understand the need to get rid of a falling down building, but it reeks of the state shooting someone in the head and charging them for the bullet.
    I have ran into these people before and know what they’re like. I’ve bought buildings on their radar and had to deal with them before I could fix them.
    I don’t want to some behind-a-desk know-it-all having the ability to knock down a private citizens personal property unless there is a heavy burden of proof on the city that this place requires knocking down.

  • Cody – did you look at some of those buildings?

    I looked at the two on Navigation as they are close to my house and they definitely need to be torn down. Not every house can be saved and I’m actually kind of glad the city demolishes houses that the owners have decided not to maintain.

  • Cody,

    I imagine it is a pain to have to deal with these things so soon after purchase, but the alternative is they cause residents in those areas problems, especially if they are vacant and have access (no fence, broken windows, doors). I think things like this should be dealt with case by case, but owners can’t expect to sit on vacant, unsecured property for any amount of time.

  • Wouldn’t it be fun to go on a roller skating extravaganza from demolition site to site. I will bring my cape and wear a traffic cone on my head!


  • Aside from an understandable general mistrust of city government, what is lacking in the standard for getting a vacant building demolished? Has anyone ever claimed that the City jumped the gun and bulldozed a viable structure?

    I used to live next to a vacant home. The area was nice enough that there wasn’t a problem with vagrants/druggies getting into the building. But the City never took any action on the building. That leads me to wonder whether the standard might be too lenient.

  • Just because there are a lot of them does not necessarily mean that they have not been dealt with on a “case by case basis”.

  • The 735 Broad Ripple in Huffman, 77336. This land is vacant land already so don’t count this towards the 400. I wonder how many others listed don’t really exist. City of Houston padding the numbers again??

  • Just because there are a lot of them does not necessarily mean that they have not been dealt with on a “case by case basis”.

    Since I didn’t know how the city determined what to knock down, I just clarified what my particular approach would be.

  • Some houses in my ‘hood are so out of compliance, the fire department should be told not to even try to save them if they catch fire. Sort of like a ‘do not resuscitate’ directive.

  • So, I looked at the data for the map again. There’s 159 Addresses, but 224 Buildings.

    Last year, this got more press because the Mayor mentioned Demolition Day in her “State of the City” address. I got data from somewhere last year that had City of Houston Demolitions and Harris County Demolitions for Demolition Day.

    I can’t find the Harris county data for this year. If anybody can get it send it to Swamplot. I’m sure Gus will forward it to me.

  • Houston should just levy an extra tax on vacant structures like these. The city would collect more money, vacant property owners would be encouraged to clean up their act, and the tax base will eventually grow when it’s not economically feasible to just sit on a slum. Plus, tax payers already pay more for law enforcement near these structures… so the owners causing the problems in these neighborhoods should pay more for the services their properties require.

  • Brian – extra tax on vacant properties is useless. If the owners aren’t in a financial position (or inclined) to keep up the property, more (higher) taxes are essentially uncollectable, and would simply increases the levy against the property any potential buyer would have to deal with. This is a short list — I’ve seen 10x this many houses that “need to go” all over town. I like Miss_Msry’s suggestion on the “DNR for houses” idea, too.

  • Interesting that Mayor Parker brags that she is going to knock down 400 homes, yet she will not even let me remodel mine, because it is “historic”.