Excavators Sink Their Teeth into River Oaks Shopping Center’s Café Ginger Leftovers as Part of the Buildup to 30-Story Highrise Replacement

It’s crunch time at the vacated original Café Ginger in the northern portion of the River Oaks Shopping Center, where a new 30-story apartment tower dubbed The Driscoll is planned to rise up over W. Gray St. Views from beyond the blaze orange barricades scattered around the parking lot since site work began in March show the crushing scene.

Since yesterday, the building’s been spilling its guts out onto the pavement in this particular area:



There’s also this indentation carved out adjacent to Brasserie 19’s digs around the corner from the building’s saucer-like tower, in the facade that fronts W. Gray directly:

Photos: Jose Galvan (Brasserie 19) Swamplox inbox (all others)

The End of the Endcap

12 Comment

  • Missed pun opportunity: “gingerly”

  • Looks like a perfect reason to avoid this entire shopping center area for the next 2+ years.

  • Shame about the old place. Hoping the new building will allow for some ground level restaurants. At least we still have the River Oaks Theater.

  • its a shame to be losing this historical structure. i heard santa anna had mu shu pork here a few days before the battle of san jacinto.

  • Say goodbye to B19. No one is going to want to be on this patio during construction with their mediocre food, dirty restaurant and limited wine list.

  • Legit question for people who know more about real estate than me: why are there so many apartment complexes and high rises under construction in Houston right now? Is there actual demand for so many of them? In addition to this high rise, they’re building a high rise on the 1308 Cantina site about a mile away, not to mention all the other high rises with a two-mile radius of this area. Maybe it’s because I’m not the target demographic for something like this, but I’m just not seeing the demand for all these apartment buildings.

  • @Courtney: The bet is that now that job growth has resumed, the 2020 time frame will be the time to hit the market with new supply. While a large supply of new units aren’t necessarily needed in 2018 (as Harvey evacuees should be moving to new homes), the calculation is that ongoing job growth will have led to existing excess units being absorbed by a couple years from now. Whether that’s a good bet or not, well, that’s up for debate.
    Funny, you rarely hear anyone asking if all those new single family homes out on the periphery are really needed. Only apartments and townhomes seem to be subject to such scrutiny.

  • @Courtney, I’m not in the know either, but in a city like Houston location is probably the important point. We may have a lot of high rises, but all the recent condo’s were developed between uptown & kirby. To me this location far exceeds those others in a unique way with access to the bayou, downtown, surrounding walkability and the montrose area.

  • I live within sight of this. They will be looking down on my yard. I’m very happy that developers want to build in my neighborhood. The alternative is terrible. I grew up in Beaumont so I know what economic stagnation is. The population there has been stagnant for 60 years. Losing historical buildings is better. If you truly think this shopping center is so historical that it has some value for future generations then I hope you went out and took photos before it was demolished.

  • @LocalPlanner – Thank you. As for single family homes, I would much rather people buy into existing housing stock rather than paving over the Katy prairie with pointless new homes (and exacerbating flood risks to boot).

  • @ Courtney those homes mean economic growth is happening. When 50 + inches of water come that direction, the Katy Prairie wont make a difference.

    Looking very much forward to turning the Katy Prairie into a reservoir.

  • @jgriff. I grew up in Beaumont as well. Go Bruins! And its certainly a cautionary tale. Its like the only place in the entire state that has not grown at all and the demographics are horrible. I grew up in the 80’s and it was still a cool place to grow up, but now even the West End is getting ghetto. Houston is dynamic, the polar opposite of Beaumont and everyone moves to Houston or Austin (Hook em”) eventually. My Mom still lives in the West End but will be moving soon. Even she is done with Beaumont and its crime and stagnation. It’s a pity because Beaumont has some beautiful houses and neighborhoods. I hope Beaumont doesn’t become another Port Arthur, but that’s where its headed.