At Risk: New 14-Story Tower Drawn in the Heights

Sign for Rizk Tower, White Oak, Houston Heights

This sign, posted near the corner of White Oak and Oxford in the Heights, has apparently stirred up concerns among a few area residents. And really, if causing a commotion was the goal, broker Ed Rizk couldn’t have picked a better location: the property is right next to the Onion Creek Coffee House.

Judging from the emails we’ve received, the project already has a name: It’s “another Ashby Highrise.” The latest from the sleuths on HAIF: Planning and Development says it hasn’t received any permit or subdivision application for the project.

Photo: HAIF user tmariar

9 Comment

  • I hope this project moves forward and NIMBY idiots don’t kill this like the Ashby project.

  • nothing could be more horrible than this. as if parking at onion creek isnt a pain in the ass enough.

  • Another completely out-of-scale proposal. What is it with these developers? Clearly this one doesn’t care about Rizking the wrath of the neighbors.

  • Where do we get the right to restrict the property owner(s) right to do with there property as they wish. We don’t have zoning (which is why i love this city so much). This lot isn’t deed restricted either.

    Also, White Oak is primed for denser development that can be allowed there for lack of restrictions.

    It’s not like the structure is being slapped into the center of Woodland Heights, Norhill, or Heights West.

    Another great location would be in the 19th/20th street area near Yale. This area would be perfect for a development like this.

  • kjb434- This structure is being slapped in the middle of the Heights proper in an area bounded to the north and south by single family homes and small retail. Building a 14 story building in an area that has nothing of the sort can’t be any more inappropriate!
    I dont think people are dismayed at high density living so much as the location of this.
    Your Yale and 19th/20th is indeed a great location and the new structure on 22nd confirms this. But Yale is not White Oak.
    How upset would you be if the person living next to you decided to open up a 24hr sex shop and used needle exchange? Your argument says theres nothing wrong with that because its their land to do with what they please. But the fallacy in that argument is their decision to operate as a sex shop directly affects the value of your property next door. And if you’ve put a lot of hard work into your property you’ll do everything you can to maintain the integrity of it. Same here, but take that argument to a neighborhood level. The Heights is not Midtown. The Heights doesn’t want to be another Midtown. Is it too much to ask for neighborhoods to be unique and different from one another or do we all have to be just spawning grounds for massive structures of concrete and steel?

  • “…24hr sex shop and used needle exchange?”

    That had me laughing for about two minutes straight. :)

  • I’m with kjb on this one. While there is residential essentially around this, White Oak Drive is basically a commercial frontage street. Many years ago I lived a couple of blocks away. If I had a house right behind this, I wouldn’t be too keen on the idea, but that’s what happens when you buy in an area with no zoning and no deed restrictions. This will be on a relatively wide mostly commercial frontage street. I don’t live far from this place now, but I purposefully bought where there is almost completely newer relatively expensive residential contruction around my house to offset the fact that there are no deed restrictions. The people at Rizk have every right to build what they want to there. It’s called property rights. As long as the city approves the building permits, they build what they want. And…. it’s not appropriate or ethical for the city to come along afterwards like the Ashby deal and change the rules after the fact because White or some other wealthy people don’t like what’s happening. I may not be crazy about high rises in residential neighborhoods, but it’s not about what I want, it’s what is permissable under the land use laws present.

  • {sarcasm}

    Yay! Everyone needs a 14-story condo in their neighborhood. Glad The Heights is finally coming to their senses.

    {end sarcasm}

  • As someone who lives on White Oak, I think this is the worst idea ever and I am fuming from the pit of my soul that someone is even considering this. The only reason someone came up with this ridiculous idea is pure greed. I live in the Heights to escape the city’s high rises, chain retail stores and crowds in general. I have no idea who this soul-less Ed Rizk character is, but I suspect he lives OTL somewhere in a cookie-cutter mansion and drives a Hummer. He needs to stay out of my neighborhood and not disturb the peace to put an extra cool mil in his already fat pocket. Houston already has TOO MANY high rises, most of which are empty. Do we really need any more? NO! Leave the Heights out of it!