The silver apple went up late last week on the enormous new Houston Food Bank location carved out of the former Sysco Foods warehouse at 535 Portwall St., just northwest of the I-10 East-610 Loop intersection. The 310,000-sq.-ft. facility will include a cafe, a community room and training center that’s open to the public, and a volunteer program called Serving for Success that’s open to inmates and probationers. The organization hopes to use its new space to double the amount of food it distributes (to 120 million lbs. a year) by 2018. Official opening date: September 23rd.
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SUMMARY REPORT FROM THE RECENT URBAN GARDEN SUMMIT “There is a 2 acre plot of land beside the parking lot at the Houston Food Bankâ€™s new headquarters on I-10 east and that organization is looking for someone to build a demonstration garden there. Meanwhile, Covenant Community Capital is assisting a group of chefs including Randy Evans from Haven who are looking for a spot for a cooperative restaurant garden. Last Organic Outpost and the Harris County AgriLife extension office are looking for ways to help both groups. One idea under consideration is to turn the Houston Food Bank lot into a composting facility — at least to get that project started. The search for a restaurant garden is focusing on vacant lots in the Fifth Ward.” [Texas Eats; previously on Swamplot]
From RdlR Architects: Drawings showing how the former Sysco Foods HQ on Portwall St. off I-10 just inside the East Loop will look when its transformation into what its sponsors claim will be the world’s largest food bank is complete. The Houston Food Bank bought the facility — which includes a 298,000-sq.-ft. warehouse and a 130,000-sq.-ft. freezer building — back in April, for $17 million. The nonprofit hopes to be able to distribute 120 million pounds of food annually by 2018.
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SOME VERY LARGE BUILDINGS NOW OWNED BY THE BANK Oh, but this time it’s the Houston Food Bank, announcing it has finally acquired restaurant distribution giant Sysco Foods’ former warehouse facilities at 535 Portwall St., just northeast of the intersection of I-10 East and the Loop. Officials of the nonprofit organization are set to announce plans today for renovating the property into the largest food bank in the country. The Houston Food Bank paid $17 million for the complex, down from the $22 million quoted when the deal was first announced:
“The acquisition included a 272,711-square foot warehouse, a 153,341 square-foot freezer building and a 15,870 square-foot truck center. . . .
This deal had been in the works since 2007 when Sysco announced it was selling its storage warehouse to build a new one on the north side of town.” [Prime Property]