An H-E-B Across from the Upper Kirby Whole Foods; David Adickes’ Beatles Statues Could Be Yours

Photo of statues by David Adickes: elnina via Swamplot Flickr Pool


22 Comment

  • The HEB purchase of that land is to build a Central Market, I would think. They wouldn’t build another HEB just 1 mile from the HEB on Alabama, right? We can’t get an HEB in the East End but they give them out like candy on the west side of town.

  • re: HEB Kirby: Somehow I don’t see how HEB could put a store @ Alabama and Kirby without chainsawing the beautiful oaks on Steel Street.

  • @GL Why would they build another Central Market just down the street from their sole Houston location (3815 Westheimer Rd)? Either way it’s a strange move for HEB.

  • So the land for the HEB had been planned for a highrise apartment tower by Hanover Cos., correct?

  • I doubt it’s a Central Market unless they’re selling off the current Central Market (1.7 miles away). In addition to the HEB on Alabama @ Dunlavy (1 mile away) the Buffalo Speedway store is 1.4 miles away.

    Could be a different store concept altogether.

  • I’m very skeptical about the Finn Hall food court. They’re cramming 11 chef driven food stalls in a building with no parking and no foot traffic outside of lunch rush hour. It’s a 500 seat facility. I just don’t see how they can all make money on lunch alone. That’s what you get when you get out of town developers who think Houston is somehow New York.

  • The HEB article states that they’re still doing their due diligence. I know from personal experience that HEB doesn’t close every deal they put under contract, so don’t start counting chickens just yet.

    FWIW, the Alabama/Dunlavy HEB is bursting at the seams. If this goes through I might actually be able to park at my local HEB on the weekend!

  • Re: HEB land
    Any HEB store on that location would be irrational given the proximity of their other stores (Central Market, Buffalo Market, and Montrose Market). I’m sure the people at HEB’s HQ have Google Maps to see where all of this is relative to each other.
    Illogical as it seems, it may be that HEB will open a Mattress Central Market: four stories of nothing but mattresses. Open 24/7. (I kid – or do I?)

  • There will never be enough HEBs. Last weekend the one Buffalo Speedway actually ran out of carts, and inside it was a madhouse. Crowds outside gridlocked cars in the parking lot, backing up both Bissonnet and Buffalo Speedway, with ripple effects on 59 south. And they were out of fresh OJ, dammit!

  • @commonsense re: Finn Hall, there’s plenty of traffic on this block outside the lunch hour. They’ll do well during the lunch hour, but I’m guessing their happy hour will be packed…

  • The Beatles statues are cool-ish, but have nothing to do with Texana or Americana, like most of his other statues. Not sure why they would be a good fit for Memorial Park, other than the fact that they were made here. Plus the Beatles are a generational thing that will eventually fade in relevance when the Baby Boomers die off., along with their cool factor.

  • Yeah, the first question is whether HEB is buying up the entire block, including the land that is supposed to be the Italian designer condo midrise, or just the strip center developments that front W. Alabama. If the later, then maybe HEB is considering a smaller concept like the SoFlo store in San Antonio. That would be interesting.

    Also, I think HEB is smelling blood in the water. Whole Foods is going to undergo changes once they are bought out by Amazon. Randall’s is basically a zombie grocer that has no future.

    @commonsense: Go to Conservatory downtown at night. A lot of people like the option of getting something good from counter service before (or after) going to a show or baseball/basketball game. And with a nice tap wall, it becomes a low key bar after hours. Costs are low because you only need two or three employees. Houston Center has a few hundred seats in its food court and is pretty full during lunch. 500 seats could easily fill up during lunch time rush. So, it is probably not a bad idea to have a few too many seats for dinner than to not have enough space for lunch.

  • [quote]I’m very skeptical about the Finn Hall food court. They’re cramming 11 chef driven food stalls in a building with no parking and no foot traffic outside of lunch rush hour. It’s a 500 seat facility. I just don’t see how they can all make money on lunch alone. That’s what you get when you get out of town developers who think Houston is somehow New York.[/quote]
    Well, the developer is Midway, which is Houston-based. There is another chef food hall going in at the Aris high rise which is being developed by Hines, also Houston-based. Probably some knowledge of the market between the two of them. 712 Main has parking, albeit no retail parking. Somehow the Flying Saucer across the street has gotten along for 15 years with no parking (and plenty of foot traffic outside lunch). But these are all just facts.

  • @Mike, the developer/operator is Ozrey, some guys out of Austin, they have no clue about Houston, they don’t even have the projected traffic numbers yet, and they demand $50 grand from each chef up front as a “Design Fee” before the space is even built out. Sure there a couple of places downtown that held on for decades, but there are more failures and high turnovers than successes. The mall downtown has been near bankruptcy several times. They’re also talking about break even minimums of 3,000 covers a day, I just don’t see how that’s achievable. And it’s certainly not enough to keep 11 chefs profitable.

  • Commonsense, you’re right that the operator is Ozrey out of Austin, but the developer is Midway out of Houston. You said “developer” before. With downtown’s residential population and foot traffic rapidly rising, I think that the successes are starting to outnumber the failures, and it looks like Midway and Hines (who know the market better than you or I do) feel the same way.

  • Does anyone know the development plans for the HEB owned lot at Greenbriar and Richmond?? It is a huge lot begging to be developed. And seems like the perfect solution to ease the craziness at the Alabama/Dunlavy location.

  • @Mike, I’m not sure how much involvement Midway or Hines have other than owning the building space but I’ve talked to the two main guys at Ozrey (They’re doing the final buildout) and they are completely clueless. They had no basic understanding of Houston, couldn’t even name the intersecting streets of the project off the top of their head, never been in the tunnels, don’t understand parking issues. They had very generic demographic numbers, probably from the census website. They’re some sort of restaurant business consultants and were more concerned about menu items and price to wash plates than bringing in enough customers to support that size of operation. In short, no, they don’t know any better than you or I.

  • @strollerpusher I was always under the impression an HEB was going there in 2019 as well…may not be happening, which is a bummer. I was banking on them pushing out all of the ‘adult massage parlors’

  • Not only do they not close on every site they put under contract, there are several sites around town owned by HEB that will never be developed as grocery stores. They have a real estate company out of San Antonio to develop and manage these properties.

    They may buy them for development as future concepts, or may own and not develop them because better opportunities arose later. I know of two sites they have owned where this has happened. I think it’s unlikely that’s the case here but can’t be ruled out.

  • i didnt stay at a holiday inn express last night but for all of you who did thanks for the expert HEB knowledge…

  • Go HEB!
    (Haven’t read past the 4th comment yet)

  • Aren’t the beatles at 8th Wonder? Maybe they will entice HEB to come over here and watch the demise of the baby boomers.