OXY IN TALKS TO BUY CONOCOPHILLIPS’ CAMPUS Occidental Petroleum has its eyes on the 62-acre campus on N. Dairy Ashford off I-10 that ConocoPhillips has been planning to vacate since last year. In an email to Oxy employees, CEO Vicki Hollub said the company had found “a unique opportunity to acquire an office campus with the space and amenities to create a more modern work environment.” Oxy arrived in Greenway Plaza a few years after ConocoPhillips set up shop in its then-newly-built Dairy Ashford complex during the early 80s. Renovations made over the Conoco campus — pictured above — in 2008, but last year, the oil giant announced it’d be taking off for the 22-story Energy Center 4 building it had leased on the other side of I-10. The highrise neighbors the 2-stories-shorter Energy Center 3 tower, where employees of Conoco’s Lower 48 business unit are already stationed. [Previously on Swamplot] Photo of ConocoPhillips headquarters, 600 N. Dairy Ashford Rd.: W.S. Bellows Construction
DID NOT FLOOD! (barely)
I really hope this goes through. Would be some badly-needed good news for the Energy Corridor.
It’s a really nice campus. I’m glad to see it returned to use. It always seemed to me that Conoco is downgrading by piling everyone into the Energy Center tower.
Bittersweet… 550K and five years ago, we moved from the Katy Mills area to be closer to work as in 4 miles. Now the company wants to move to the West side! Oh well… maybe they will offer “packages” for those who don’t want to continue working due to the commute! One can only dream, right? :)
@MontroseResident – Your commute won’t be too bad at all being counter to rush hour traffic. Used to work at I10 & SH6 and live in Rice Military. That $1 Katy Toll Road was amazing. Take Park Row Dr and jump on toll way from the Addicks Park and Ride.
The old Conoco building is not enough office space for all of Oxy’s employees They are also planning to hire more people so what orginally is small will become even more cramped. Someone at Oxy didn’t consider the amenities square footage from actual office space and I hope Oxy reconsiders the purchase for a smarter location or stays in Greenway. It’s perfectly located right off a freeway unlike the old Conoco building. Greenway is also closer to where most millenials are already and prefer to live because of the upscale cultural environment and we want to live close to where we work rather than have a long commute
I’d be surprised if Oxy didn’t assess the size of the Conoco building vs the needs before proceeding with the acquisition. In the event that they do need to expand in the future, there’s still a sizable glut of unleased office space in the immediate area.
Many of the Oxy employees I know already live on the west side of town, and this move will result in a net reduction in commute time for them. For those who prefer to live inside the loop, it’s a palatable reverse commute, especially if you live near I-10. If you prioritize living close to work – you’ll find plenty of recently-built apartments in the area, and single-family homes that literally cost a third what a comparable place near Greenway would run. Terry Hershey Park is a great amenity, as well.
Not sure what you mean by the Conoco building having poor freeway access – it’s right next to I-10 (and next to an HOV/HOT exit lane). More importantly – it’s nowhere near the 610/59 interchange nightmare.
On a related note, is Park Row Dr. open from Eldridge to Hwy 6 now?
I hope the size is being assessed because the expectation is that most will have three feet tall very small cubicles to save space because there is only a very small foot print available for everyone which is a big change from private quiet offices.
Many like to live close to work but we also prefer a different cultural atmosphere than that of the Energy Corridor. Yeah maybe the commute with opposing traffic is not bad but just down the street is better particularly when the cost of living is higher inside the loop.
Houston’s weather is not something many care to spend time hanging out in most of the year especially in a swampy area of extra high humidity with ponds and so the outdoor space of the old Conoco building and Hershey park is not of interest. Which brings me to the parking issues at the old Conoco building that leaves you fully exposed to the elements but at Greenway many don’t use a coat during the winter have zero use for an umbrella, rain coat or waders when it’s raining sideways and our cars are fully protected all day never even hot during the summer in a parking garage with room for everyone unlike the awning covers in Conoco’s parking lot.
Disappointed and perhaps some others are just not fully informed.
I worked at the ConocoPhillips campus until the recent move to Energy Center. It is a beautiful facility (though it does need some remodel.) It is not swampy and the outdoor grounds were used often by employees. The outdoor soccer field, lighted jogging trail, and covered outdoor dining and seating areas were used by many on a daily basis year ’round. It has one of the best fitness centers in Houston with a pool, full size gymnasium, fitness classrooms, weight machines, free weights, massage rooms, and cardio. A five story parking garage was constructed on the west end of the campus in 2008 and there are completed plans for another parking garage and office tower on the east end to replace the awning covered parking.
Every building, regrdless of location, has a “limited footprint.” I do not know how many employees Oxy has in Houston. The ConocoPhillips building is 1.4 million SF. A good half a million SF more than Oxy currently occupies in Greenway Plaza. The ConocoPhillps complex was constructed with 3000 private offices each being 12′ x 15′. recently some of the offices (certainly not all) have been removed and replaced with cubicles. Like they would in any office location, downtown or otherwise, Oxy management will determine whether employees should be in private offices or a more open office concept.
The complex at 600 N. Dairy Ashford sits right on I-10 between the Sam Houston Tollway and the Grand Parkway, a mile from Highway 6. For Houston, access is not bad. I have many fellow employees who live in The Heights or other areas nearer downtown. They indicate that the commute is good because they are going against traffic flow. The commute for people living in west Houston, Katy, Cypress, Sugarland, Memorial etc… and even The Woodlands is certainly easier than the commute would be driving to/from downtown. People on the east side of Houston well………….. Perhaps Oxy will help out somehow like Conoco did when they moved from Greenway Plaza to the Energy Corridor.
I have also heard that companies vacating downtown will somehow have trouble recruiting young talent. Obviously, the large energy related companies are not too concerned. Exxon, ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66, Shell, Citgo, BP, KBR, Foster Wheeler, McDermott, Worley Parsons, and a host of smaller companies have all chosen not to locate downtown. They have no problem recruiting and maintaining top tier talent.