The city signed off this week on the plan to put an outdoor concert and performance venue into one of the Willow Waterhole Bayou detention basins along S. Post Oak Dr., north of the intersection with S. Main St. Specifically, the project is planned alongside the basin just north of Gasmer Rd., west across S. Post Oak from that area previously wrapped in barbed wire to reserve it as habitat for endangered Texas prairiedawn. Rebecca Elliot writes that the stage will be paid for by the California-based Levitt Foundation, which has performance spaces geared toward public concerts and events in 6 cities around the country (and more in the works). The Houston venue will have to host at least 25 public events per year, and the city will be on the hook for up to $1 million in repairs during its first 15 years of operation.
Like some of the city’s other basin-bottom park infrastructure, the structure will be designed to flood on occasion: the rendering above shows the structure largely elevated on stilts, with the basin’s smaller permanent retention pond reflecting fireworks behind it. The structure should be somewhat hurricane-resistant, too — at least according to an information packet dating back to 2012. That packet also included a drawing of the potential placement for the stage, along with some landscaping and parking lot layout:
Demolition began yesterday on one of the 11 remaining structures of Westbury Square at Chimney Rock Rd. and W. Belfort Ave., according to a post on the Westbury Civic Club’s Facebook page. The post indicates that the first building on the chopping block was one damaged by fire in 2010, but that the rest were not scheduled by the owners to meet their unmakers on Tuesday.
An agent for Camelot Realty Group told HBJ last July that the run-down 1960s shopping plaza was under contract by the Villas at Westbury Square, and that the buildings were slated for demolition at the start of last August to make way for more than 100 townhomes (or maybe a commercial development, depending on how things went). A Swamplot commenter noted, however, that the buildings were still standing in early January.
Confirming a rumor Swamplot noted last week, the HBJ’s Roxana Asgarian reports that “one of the largest residential developers in Houston” has plans to transform two-thirds of the site of former pedestrian shopping district Westbury Square into 100 to 125 townhomes. Camelot Realty Group’s Tom Cervone tells Asgarian a group of developers going by the name of Villas at Westbury Square has the property on West Bellfort near Chimney Rock and West Bellfort under contract from its longtime owner, Alfred Antonini.
All 11 remaining Westbury Square buildings — including the longtime home of the Company OnStage theater group — will be torn down in 30 days, the real estate agent says. Two of the more dilapidated structures from the complex were demolished last year; the Home Depot next door (visible in the distance in the photo below) was built on land that previously belonged to the complex.
Hardwood floors, according to the listing, are hiding throughout most of this 1955 mod. But there’s nothing secret about the midcentury aquamarine hues that flow out from the kitchen — the color pops against the mostly milk white interior. Owned by one family for 6 decades, the property landed on the market a week ago, with a $277,500 price tag.
A 38,000-sq.-ft. LA Fitness gym and health club and a larger separate multi-level parking garage are planned for the site of the Westbury Centerette, a vacant early-sixties shopping center on West Bellfort St. just east of Chimney Rock. The development would take up the entire block surrounded by West Bellfort, Chimney Rock, Cedarhurst Dr., and Moonlight Dr. — except for the AutoZone and WingStreet at the southwest corner. Plans submitted to the city show the LA Fitness backing up to Moonlight Dr. and facing a row of parking accessed from West Bellfort; the 263-space garage would sit at the corner of Chimney Rock and Cedarhurst:
There’s a peaked roof peeking over the flat front portion supported by columns at a 1962 Westbury home that listed last week. The home’s only street-facing window (located in the kitchen’s dining nook) peers through the home’s gated entry (above). The front door, meanwhile, faces . . .
Yesterday demo crews began tearing down 2 buildings at Westbury Square, the once-quaint pedestrian shopping district at West Bellfort and Chimney Rock that in recent decades has been overtaken by a combination of bigger-box retailing (see the Home Depot lurking in the background of the photo at left) and neglect. Long-dilapidated Buildings 1 and 5 at 635 Westbury Sq. are being removed under an agreement with the city after a longstanding battle over a “repair or demolish” order, according to the Westbury Area Improvement Corporation. But owner Alfred Antonini still has 9 other 1962-vintage buildings standing on the property, according to appraisal district records.
A modified 1959 mod home with tinted clerestory in Westbury has changed hands 5 times in 8 years — after decades with the same owner. Last week, the now-even-more-open-plan property appeared on the market once more, this time with a $425,000 asking price. It last sold in March 2013 for $348,000. Back in 2005, before all the flipping and renovations, it sold for $152,367. Other sales scored $129,000, $374,990, and $389,000. Somewhere in that chain of ownership came a big fan of glass-panel doors. They’re installed throughout the home, starting with the living room (above).
Windows and mirrors in a 1961 Westbury home’s well-hinged front room make it possible to look out and in at the same time. The cerulean-hued space off the entry hall can also swing between uses. It’s a living room now, but shows up in the listing specs as a dining room. A $5K reduction last week brought the asking price for this tidy property to $155,000; it first appeared on the market in August.
Royce White might never have suited up for the Houston Rockets, spending most of his rookie season toiling in the D-League with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and — umm, tweeting, but it appears he has found a way to contribute to the city. Last week, White — who suffers from generalized anxiety disorder — announced that his foundation, Anxious Mind’s, which he started when he was playing college ball at Iowa State, will partner with Bee Busy Wellness Clinic to open a free mental health facility on W. Bellfort. The clinic will also provide dental services and primary care and will open this January inside the Rubik’s Cube-like former Frank Neighborhood Library at 6440 W. Bellfort, shown here, just west of Westbury and Meyerland. White played in only 16 games last season; he was caught up in disputes with Rockets management about travel arrangements — he hates to fly — and team doctors. In July, he was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers.