Fatigued Metal Strips Now Jumping From the Top of The Susanne Onto the W. Alabama St. Sidewalk Below

Metal flashing at the The Susanne, Dunlavy at W. Alabama Streets, Lancaster Place, Houston, 77006Metal flashing at the The Susanne, Dunlavy at W. Alabama Streets, Lancaster Place, Houston, 77006

Highlighted in yellow along the top edge of The Susanne by the now-exposed construction materials beneath: some spots where metal flashing has been peeling off and escaping from the 8-story building at the corner of Dunlavy and W. Alabama streets. A pair of readers send photos and a report from some nearby offices this afternoon, after the latest of the metallic runaways crashed audibly onto the sidewalk out front: “They are metal and full of nails and are falling from 8 stories,” writes 1 of tipsters, adding that “this happened a few weeks ago as well.”

The Susanne opened about a year ago on the former grounds of the Dunlavy Fiesta. Another of the strips had already taken the plunge by about 7 AM this morning; the tipsters caught it curled up on the grassy strip next to W. Alabama:


Metal flashing at the The Susanne, Dunlavy at W. Alabama Streets, Lancaster Place, Houston, 77006

Metal flashing at the The Susanne, Dunlavy at W. Alabama Streets, Lancaster Place, Houston, 77006

Photos: Alex Figueroa and Swamplot inbox

Ex-Fiesta Party Foul

25 Comment

  • Ahhhh, just another example of that fine Houston apartment construction quality…..

  • They build them exactly like they used to. The new apartments are bigger and more substantial looking than the ones they used to put up in the 1970s. And of course they meet new, more stringent codes (we hope). But when it comes down to it, they still build these things as cheaply as they can get away with. And it shows.
    The really terrifying thing about the new apartments isn’t even the falling fascia strips. It’s the enclosed central garages. They’ve created dark, hidden, spaces that nobody can see into. God knows what could happen in there. If we’re lucky it will just be drug deals; not rapes or murders.

  • So glad all of the 75 year-old+, well-built homes are being demolished and forgotten about while crap like this is going up all over the city.

    Disposable homes made by fly-by-night people looking for a quick score while simultaneously turning every street into a character-less Stepford stand-in of 3-story biscuit boxes.

  • Getoffmy: The older Multifamily is going away to make room for this new stuff because that’s what the city wants to happen.
    Try to buy an older property and renovat it. Even with the best intentions, tell me how enjoyable it is dealing with the city.
    People doing new construction are people that have already taken their beatings from the city and are now smart enough to blow up old stuff and rebuild
    I’m still naïve, and somewhat idealistic, so I still try to renovate old properties. But I think I’ve bought my last.

  • sorry to hear that, Cody

  • This is why we chose the Fairmont across the street…

  • The Susanne is for people who want to live in Montrose, but behind bars. The logic is not quite compelling. Why pay premium if you are going to shut yourself off from the neighborhood? Okay, so they have balconies from which the action in the HEB parking lot can be observed, like the food trucks when they show up once or twice a month and the occasional live performers on the stage at the outdoor seating area. But if the roof is now coming down in pieces, they are going to have to wear crash worthy helmets or hard hats even for that little outdoorsy pleasure in the comfort of their own unit.
    Perfect safety is, of course, elusive. And it’s no different for those who prefer to live in a controlled-access metal-perimetered property. Perhaps it’s worse.
    At least the multi-level garage in the back doesn’t visually spoil the optics of the neighborhood. That’s been a problem at some other new apartment developments, like the one at the corner of Memorial and Dairy Ashford.

    And while we are on Dunlavy and recalling the Fiesta days, it must be said that H-E-B has done a really fine job preserving most of the old trees and improving the neighborhood with the various events and amenities. Not to mention that the store itself is a pleasure to shop at. The obvious solution to any parking issues at the individual level is to avoid the busiest times and shop late at night (a recommendation I would be hesitant to make for the Midtown Fiesta, but not for the Montrose HEB).

  • Oh come on guys stuff like this is bound to happen sooner or later. In this case it was just sooner. Way sooner. Like right after it was built….

  • Oh man, when even Cody is giving up the city has a problem.

  • I’m sure it has nothing to do with the severe winds we had the other day that damaged property all over the city.

  • @Cody: I am happy you’re still in the renovation game. And thanks for taking it to the hinterlands beyond 610. I hope you find that people out there are more appreciative of the work you do!
    I’ll say it here and I don’t mean to be cheesy: you (and Steve Moore, and other right minded private investors who buy distressed properties and fix them) do what the housing officials and “advocates” should be doing. As far as I’m concerned, you guys (not them) are the forces for good for housing in Houston’s poorer neighborhoods.
    I hope these words of encouragement make up for the hassles in the permitting realm, but I know they won’t.

  • I’d be more worried about what other issues exist. Look up ‘Berkeley Balcony Collapse’ for an incident last year where 5 Irish exchange students died when an apartment balcony collapsed in California. The developer cut corners on the waterproofing and one of those cantilevered balconies just came out of the wall during a party due to wood rot.

  • It is what happens when the developer lets architects design the structure.

  • We’ll be facing a minor crisis in 10-20 years, all these shoddily made 3 story stucco monstrosities, most more than 5 years are already showing real signs of age and decline, coupled with no reliable well built housing will force thousands who grossly overpaid for these shoeboxes made of cardboard to move, tear down/rebuild, same will be true for all those tiny hastily constructed apartments. All those will wind up looking like Tidwell soon enough, so enjoy Montrose while you can.

  • @Mr Me
    Nice try but extrapolating on your premise, the entire building is at risk of disintegrating whenever the next Cat. 5 hurricane blow through, right?

  • @SBGuy
    I’m pretty sure this building was built with poured concrete floors and and steel framing. I’ve wondered if this was done to eventually convert to condominiums at some point.

  • It’s just a few pieces of metal…after some windy days. It doesn’t mean the whole place is crap.

  • A few pieces of metal on a windy day. Huh. I think the people down-playing this have a raging case of stupidity. This could have KILLED OR BADLY INJURED someone just walking down the street or waiting at the light.

  • “It is what happens when the developer lets architects design the structure.”

    What does this even mean? Architects design the building and structural engineers design the structure. This is a piece of 26a. roof flashing that someone didn’t attach correctly. Today’s building codes mean these buildings are safer, more fire & wind resistant, and much more energy efficient than older construction. There may not have as much ‘craftsmanship’ (i.e. $$$), but c’mon. Sheesh.

  • Two words: Liquid. Nails.

  • that is very Cheap. know in Day’s is just the Money.

  • If you spelled the name of the building correctly, this piece could actually be useful to those looking to rent in the complex.
    How do you take a photo of a sign with the correct spelling of the building’s name, but manage to misspell in the headline? Generation X at it’s finest!

  • For anyone who lived here through the mid to late 70’s through the early 80’s we are all too aware of how things were just thrown up as fast and as cheaply as possible, cracked slabs were du riguer, flooding issues, aluminum wiring, as well as a whole host of other issues.. If you don’t think a lot of these same mistakes are being repeated now you’re probably delusional, especially with all the awful stucco being used near ubiquitously around town, go look at some of the ones built within the last 10 years and you’ll see failing stucco, poor construction, shoddy methods, how many town home collapses do you need to see before you realize this is history repeating itself for a new generation of “suckers”.

  • Glad you caught it, Straight! Fixed now.

  • Personally I am waiting for the major foundation issues to surface on all those pop-up apartment/condo complexes they have been building the last 15 years.