12/12/14 5:15pm

What an embarrassment of riches! For Best Demolition, the second category of the 2014 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate, we had far too many contenders than available places on the ballot. So several valiant contenders for the title got knocked out of the running.

Thanks to your help, a terrific slate of candidates for this award remains, however. And with some additional help — in the form of your votes — we’ll all pick the winner. What qualifies a nominee to be declared Best Demolition of the year? Does it refer to the best act of demolition, the removal that produced the best results, or the best building that happened to be torn down? That’s up to you!

The voting rules for this year’s Swampies, which includes a slight tweak to our previous rules, are posted here. You can still vote in this category through each of 4 methods: in a comment below, in an email to Swamplot, on Twitter, or on Swamplot’s Facebook page. This go-around, however, we’ll only be counting votes submitted through the first 2 methods from voters who’ve signed up for the Swamplot email list. (If you haven’t done so already, you can through this link or the box at the top left of this page.) When you cast your vote(s), please try to explain why you’re voting for that particular nominee, so we’ll have plenty of entertaining comments to include in our roundup of the winners and runners-up.

And here they are! Or rather, here they were! The official nominees for Best Demolition of 2014:

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The 2014 Swampies
12/11/14 5:00pm

Here they are, straight from your submissions: the official nominees in the first category of the seventh annual Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate. That, of course, is Favorite Houston Design Cliché. Thanks to all of you who contributed! These awards wouldn’t happen without you.

If you’ve voted in the Swampies before, please note we’re making a slight tweak to our voting rules this year. You can still vote up to 4 times in this category by 1) leaving a comment below this post; 2) sending us an email; or by expressing your preference on 3) Twitter or 4) Facebook. This year, however — to encourage signups — we’ll only be counting votes submitted through the first 2 methods from voters who’ve signed up for the Swamplot email list. (If you haven’t done so already, you can through this link or the box at the top left of this page). Make sure your vote counts by reading and following our voting instructions.

Just as important as the votes you cast, though, are the explanations you provide with them. Tell us why you’re voting for who you’re voting for! What you write may sway other readers to vote as you did. And if your candidate wins or comes in second place, your clever comments might be included in our round-up post.

Here, then are the 2014 nominees for favorite Houston design cliché:

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The 2014 Swampies
12/11/14 11:15am

This year’s Swampies are starting to take shape. Nominations closed at midnight last night for the first 2 of the 7 categories in this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate: Favorite Houston Design Cliché and Best Demolition. Later today, we’ll kick off the voting when we announce the official nominees for the first of those categories. Then, throughout the rest of this week and next, we’ll work our way through the remaining categories in order, announcing the official nominees and opening the voting for each.

But your chance to make nominations hasn’t ended entirely. For the categories that still have nominations open, we still need your help. Peruse the suggestions posted in the comments sections of the 5 remaining categories (all the categories are listed here). If you find anything missing, please add your nominations. If you think you can improve on any of the explanations already submitted, do that, too. If you see a nomination without any explanation at all, fix that and add a good one. Got photos of any of the nominees? Send them our way!

The deadline for nominations in the next 2 categoriesBest Body of Water and Best Mobile Food Vendor Location — is midnight tonight.

The 2014 Swampies
12/10/14 3:30pm

All 7 categories in the 2014 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate have now been announced and opened for nominations. But the Swampies have only just gotten started.

Readers have submitted some stellar nominations so far, but if you think anything’s missing that simply must be included, please add your nomination now. If you like a nomination that’s already been made but think you can beef up or add an explanation to better help it land on the ballot, go right ahead. (Here’s a hint: Nominees that are mentioned, but that don’t come with any explanation or reasons for the choice aren’t particularly likely to end up on a final ballot.) If you have photos of any of the nominees, send those in, too.

But don’t wait too long! Tonight at midnight, nominations will close for the first 2 award categories: Favorite Houston Design Cliché and Best Demolition. We’ll close nominations Thursday night for the next 2 categories: Best Body of Water and Best Mobile Food Vendor Location, then finish off the rest of the nominations next week for the remaining categories. Tomorrow, we’ll announce the official slate of nominees for the first award category and open it for voting. And then continue on from there.

Add your nominations to the comments section below the post that announces each category, or send them to us in an email. Who are the top contenders in Houston real estate this year? You tell us.

The 2014 Swampies
12/10/14 11:15am

If you’ve been keeping track, you’ll have counted 6 categories announced so far in the 2014 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate: Favorite Houston Design Cliché, Best Demolition, Best Body of WaterBest Mobile Food Vendor Location, Best Sign of the New Houston, and 2014 Neighborhood of the Year.

Here’s the seventh and final category: the Greatest Moment in Houston Real Estate of 2014. Covering great moments in real estate is the whole point of Swamplot. So tell us: What big real estate happening from the past year stands out above all others? Was it something Swamplot covered? Or something we missed? Your answer need not have taken place within city limits, but it should include sufficient Houston-ish qualities to be deserving of the award.

For this award to work, we need your help. Add your comments to this post or send us an email describing the moments you’d like to nominate and — more important — explaining why. If you need to jog your memory,  browse through our posts from the last year. And if you have any questions about how to make a nomination, you’ll likely find the answers here. Nominations are due by midnight on December 16, so don’t delay!

The 2014 Swampies
12/09/14 2:15pm

We’re almost done introducing the 7 categories in this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate. So far, we’ve opened nominations for Favorite Houston Design Cliché, Best Demolition, Best Body of WaterBest Mobile Food Vendor Location, and Best Sign of the New Houston. If you haven’t done so already, please add your own suggestions for each of these.

Every year, this next category gets pretty competitive: Neighborhood of the Year. Past winners have come from all over the greater Houston area, from Eastwood to Meadowcreek Village to — way back in 2009 — Galveston. (Oak Forest was last year’s runner-up.)

What qualifies any one of these neighborhoods to be declared neighborhood of the year? That’s for you to decide. When you make a nomination, be sure to say why your pick is especially award-worthy. You can submit your nominations — along with convincing explanations as to why your nominee should win — in the comments below, or in an email, by midnight on Monday, December 15. (If you’re just joining us, please consult the official rules for nominations.) Now tell us, who are this year’s contenders for Neighborhood of the Year?

The 2014 Swampies
12/09/14 10:45am

So far, 4 categories have been opened up for reader nominations in this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate: Favorite Houston Design Cliché, Best Demolition, Best Body of Water, and Best Mobile Food Vendor Location. Today, we get to welcome another new category: Best Sign of the New Houston.

What do you see as the most defining characteristics of where Houston is heading? And then: What’s the clearest sign of that direction? With this award, we’re hoping readers come up with a single specific event, development, place, or plain ol’ thing in the city that best encapsulates the new circumstances we find ourselves in here in this low-lying, smooth-talking metropolis. Help us pick the best sign of the Bayou City’s new era.

Submit your nominations for the best sign of the new Houston in the comments section below — or hit us up via email. For this category to work, we’re relying on our readers’ ability to come up with clever interpretations of this category. Have at it!

You have until midnight this Sunday, December 14 to send in your nominations. You should know the drill by now, but feel free to look over all the rules for the nominating process here.

The 2014 Swampies
12/08/14 2:15pm

Earlier today we introduced a new category for this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate. There are a total of 3 so far: Favorite Houston Design Cliché, Best Demolition and the newbie: Best Body of Water. And now there’s another new category to chew on: Best Mobile Food Vendor Location.

Food trucks have a place in the city’s landscape, but the spot each one inhabits is ever-changing. (Well, some more than others.) Where’s the best spot in the city to grab some grub-on-the-go? Feel free to nominate your favorite parking lot, roadside stop, or other destination, be it tweeted or untweeted, enshrined or merely rolled over. If you’re trying to sneak in a nomination for your favorite mobile food vendor, you’ll need to be clever about it: This award is meant to honor the locations, not the meal-delivery vehicles themselves.

To get your pick on the official ballot, submit your suggestion — along with a smart explanation for why it’s a good choice — in the comments section below. Or email your nomination to us. Just make sure to do so no later than midnight this Thursday, December 11. More thorough instructions can be found here.

The 2014 Swampies
12/08/14 10:45am

Last week we opened for your nominations the first 2 categories in this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate, both of which have been included in some form every year we’ve run the Swampies: Favorite Houston Design Cliché and Best Demolition. Today, we introduce a brand-new category for specially chosen for 2014: Best Body of Water.

Natural or manmade, streaming or stagnant: the Houston area retains its fair share of water. But which lake, river, bayou, channel, aquifer, fountain, pool, retaining pond, tank, cistern, water treatment facility, or other such repository of liquids is worthy of the highest bestowable honor by Swamplot readers? As with all the categories, this award is open to your interpretation, so get creative!

Put your choice in the comments section below — or in an email before midnight on Thursday, December 11. More complete instructions covering the nominating process can be found on this page. Don’t forget to tell us why you’re nominating what you’re nominating. (Otherwise, what’s the point?) And if you use your nomination to give this category a twist, use your introduction to sell your vision.

The 2014 Swampies
12/05/14 3:30pm

Earlier today we got this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate off and running with the first category, celebrating the Houston area’s best design clichés. Now nominations are open for the second category: Best Demolition.

This is a knockout of a category — especially in Houston, where demolitions are hip enough to command their own daily report on Swamplot. Here, though, we’re looking for that special, award-worthy demo that’s really special. Last year’s winner was a big one: the downtown Foley’s. What property should be honored this time around, and why?

Send us your clever and well-argued nominations to the comments section below — or send them in a private message to our tips line. For more on the nomination process, head here.

Nominations for both award categories announced today will remain open until midnight this Wednesday, December 10. We’ll be introducing more fun award categories next week. So submit your nominations for the first 2 categories now!

The 2014 Swampies
12/05/14 12:15pm

Again this year, the 2014 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate kick off with a category that’s been going strong ever since the awards first started back in 2008: Favorite Houston Design Cliché.

This one never gets old. And year after year, this award inspires some truly great nominations — and, of course, winners.

Last year’s winner was The Typical Inner Loop Townhouse Plan (a close runner up: Polystone-al architecture). In previous years, we’ve had the memorable Humping Bungalows, aka Humper Houses, “Lick ’n’ stick” fake-rock siding, Lone Stars, “Lakes of” subdivisions, and “Tuscanization” take the top honor. Whose turn will it be this year?

Well, that’s up to you. What Houston building, shopping center, streetscape, home, interior, neighborhood, or yard cliché deserves recognition in 2014? Your suggestions for this award may be inspired from stories you’ve read on Swamplot or from your own keen eye for overused detail.

Enter your choice in a comment to this post — or in an email to the Swamplot tip line, with the subject line “Nomination: Favorite Houston Design Cliche.” Nominations will be accepted until midnight next Wednesday, December 10, after which the best-presented choices will be put on the official ballot and opened for voting.

You can submit as many nominations as you like, but remember, your suggestions have a better chance of making it to the ballot if you make your point in a clever and convincing way. Photos help, too! Send images to the Swamplot tip line, but be sure to identify them and indicate what they’re for. If you need some guidance, here’s more information on how to make a nomination. And if you like a particular nomination someone else has submitted, feel free to second, expand, or improve upon it in the comments to help it find a place on the actual ballot.

Get it? Good. Send us your favorite clichés now!

The 2014 Swampies
12/05/14 10:15am

The moment you’ve been waiting for is here: Swamplot’s annual awards program begins now.

That’s right. Now through the end of December, we’ll be hosting the seventh annual Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate — aka the Swampies — right here.

If you’re new around these parts, or need a little refresher, the Swampies honor the designs, developments, neighborhoods, peculiarities, and personalities that make Houston, well, Houston. But they won’t do that well without your help.

Starting today, we’ll be announcing the awards’ 7 categories one by one. For each category, we’ll need your invaluable input to come up with the official slate of nominees. You can submit your own nominations either by leaving a comment on the post announcing the category or emailing us (just be sure to put the name of the category in the subject line). We want to hear what you think deserves recognition this year — and why. The better you can explain why, the better chance you’ll nominee will have of landing on the official ballot.

Year to year, categories, nominees, and winners may change, but the soul of the Swampies remains the same — they’re your awards. You make the nominations, you stuff the ballot box with your votes. We hope you’ll join in the fun!

 

The 2014 Swampies
01/06/14 12:00pm

WHO WON THE SWAMPLOT AWARDS THIS YEAR, AND WHY Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate Ribbon LogoDidja miss the grand finale of this year’s Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate in all the New Year hullabaloo? Our grand announcement of 2013’s winners is patiently awaiting your recognition and appreciation here. Also equally worthy of your perusal is this accounting of the runners-up, which was published a day earlier. Thanks again to all the worthy contestants and commentators — your juicy contributions to this city (and this website) make the Swampies an annual endeavor worth repeating.

12/31/13 10:45am

Drumroll, please. The results of the sixth annual Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate are in! Who won what in this year’s competition? You’ll find the answers below.

This announcement caps an almost month-long process that began with calls for nominations in 8 separate award categories. Official ballots were assembled from reader nominations. Then voting was opened up — to everyone.

Let’s salute the winners of the 2013 Swampies for their unique contributions to this city. It takes something special to stand out in Houston’s real estate landscape. Houston real-estate fans have noticed you!

A big salute is also due to the many Swamplot readers who took time to nominate, evaluate, vote, and comment on competitors in each category. It’s your judgments, your descriptions, and your observations that are featured below. Does this honor roll of award winners — along with the list of runners up — provide an accurate snapshot of the year in Houston real estate? All were determined by reader votes. Sure, it’s too late to vote, but you can still let us know what you think!

The winners of the 2013 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate are . . .

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The 2013 Swampies
12/30/13 10:00am

Your votes have been tallied, and here’s the moment you’ve been waiting for — well, sort of. It’s time to reveal the second-place winners of the 2013 Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate!

Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate Ribbon LogoBut before we do that, we want to thank all of you who voted, commented, nominated, campaigned, and cajoled in support of your favorite candidates. You make the Swampies possible.

The actual award winners will be announced in a later post, but now’s the time to let the second-place finishers shine. For many categories, it was a close race; under slightly different circumstances, these could have been the winners. So let’s have a big round of digital applause for the 2013 runners-up in the Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate — the Swampies!

They are:

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The 2013 Swampies