COMMENT OF THE DAY: THE RARE MONTROSE BLOCK “Whatever happens to this property will be of little consequence to the rest of Westhiemer in Montrose. As noted above, this lot is a rare bird for Westheimer as, with the exception of the JITBox pad, it encompasses the entire block. Almost very other lot from Shep to midtown on Westheimer is split with residential lots behind the commercial lots that front Westheimer. Unless you can buy out a block of single family homeowners, you will never have another chance to build on a complete block like on this lot. Thus, whether it is a high rise, mid rise, or low rise mixed use or Walmart, it will not mean that the rest of the neighborhood will be likely to follow suit. I do not think that a high rise will go in because the capital markets are still risk adverse and would prefer something that will go up faster and provide a safer and faster return. Look for another 4-6 story apartment complex, hopefully with some ground floor retail. If the JITBox is an issue, it may end up staying a strip mall. There are plenty of people in town who could make a quick buck by sprucing it up and filling it with the usual junk. This is Houston afterall. Expect the worst, hope for something slightly better.” [Old School, commenting on Big Block on the Corner of Westheimer and Montrose Goes Up for Sale]
Whatever happens on this block, please allow it to have ground floor retail. I don’t care otherwise: Ashby High-Rise, office tower, strip center, etc etc. Density is ultimately good for cities, so long as they can manage the traffic.
I hope that once the property is sold, however, the city decides to improve Westheimer from about Anvil east to Brazos Street. This is currently a suicide corridor, especially with the constant buses which don’t actually fit in the lanes, the truck-sized potholes, and the hairpin turns.
Those aren’t hairpins, those are chicanes.
The city’s long term master thoroughfare plan for Westheimer between Shepherd and Brazos is to widen the streets. Presumably, this would require taking away sidewalk space, which is already insufficient and itself a suicide corridor. While I’d love to see sidewalks widened and the number of lanes reduced, adding protected left turn lanes and signals at intersections, I’m resigned to the fact that stretch of road will forever be unable to accommodate all needs and remain dangerous by design.
This is Houston, people. Learn how to drive.
You know what this area could use?
Townhomes! Or sushi bars!
I noticed today that Schlotzsky’s is gone from that corner now, too.
The usual bus drivers have no problems staying in their lanes. What’s truly ridiculous are the tiny car drivers that can’t stay in their lanes… and yes, those are chicanes. If you think those are hairpins then you haven’t seen hairpins.
hair pins killed princess grace, those chicanes are just insane, what were our forefathers
thinking when they laid out westheimer?
I like the “The Curve”.
Separates REAL locals from the OTLs!
That hasn’t always been Westheimer. The chicane at Crockett is where a rail track ran from North to South. The street was named Hathaway on those days. The big curves are there to get around the strange orientation of Cherryhurst, which is titled from SW to NE.
The forefathers thought you’d die if you moved over 30mph. Every road trip was a lazy, Sunday drive.
And the road follows property lines.
The ultimate suicide moment is heading east on Westheimer and veering into the turn lane to turn left onto Waugh (I think), in front of the El Real parking lot.
Not only do the lanes narrow there, but a chicane pinches traffic in both directions toward the turn lane. Against my better judgment, I make this turn often. Risking death each time. This is the Houston version of extreme sports.