Weingarten had no problem tearing down the first part of the River Oaks Shopping Center last year. But when it decided to replace the historic curved building at the northeast corner of West Gray and Shepherd with the semi-curved, semi-modern confection shown here, did the company go too far?
According to the GHPA, Weingarten is now seeking a variance to allow it to keep changes it made to the approved plans for the building — which have already been built. From a website referred to in a GHPA email:
The restaurant’s balcony facing Shepherd encroaches into the mandatory setback, violating Houston City Setback Requirements. Once the City was notified of the encroachment, construction of the encroaching porch was stopped—temporarily. . . . Weingarten Realty has requested that the Planning Commission grant a variance to permit this encroaching porch. Without objections from concerned citizens like you, the City will likely grant the variance request.
That restaurant is Jeff and Tony Vallone’s planned new Il Tavolo. After the jump, a portion of the Greater Houston Preservation Alliance’s message:
Concerned neighbors of River Oaks Shopping Center are opposing Weingarten Realty’s application for a retroactive variance for construction already begun on the site. The developer made unauthorized changes to the original plans that violate the City’s setback ordinance and is only now requesting a variance. Neighboring homeowners are organizing to oppose the request when the issue comes before the Houston Planning Commission on Thursday, December 18. Details are online at www.stopshepherdnoise.org.
- Stop the Noise—Before It Starts! [Stop Shepherd Noise]
- Neighbors fight retroactive variance for Weingarten Realty [Old6WardHouston]
- River Oaks Shopping Center Replacement: Vallone at the Top [Swamplot]
- River Oaks Shopping Center Redo: Not Much of a Curve, but a Decent Wedge [Swamplot]
- That Enormous Parking Garage Behind the River Oaks Shopping Center [Swamplot]
Renderings of River Oaks Shopping Center on Shepherd Dr. at W. Gray: Weingarten Realty