The 660-sq.-ft. law office marooned on a traffic island in Seabrook for 86 years might finally get ousted from its spot in local what-is-that-thing lore when TxDOTâ€™s planned road widening project gets underway along a 3-mile stretch of Hwy. 146. Attorney Michael Valentine bought the building on the corner of Bayport Blvd. and 2nd St. in 1989 and did it up with the leafy haircut andÂ
shark dolphin-themed metal edging.Â (Bayport Blvd. is the segment of 146 that runs through Seabrook — shown to the left of building in the photo at top.) In its past lives, the 2-story wedge at 1210 Bayport had been at various points an ice house and a bait shop.
Documents filed with Harris County Clerk show that TxDOT agreed to snatch the building from Valentine for a sum of $114,356 last October after filing an eminent domain proceeding against the entity he uses to administer the property. At least 9 other businesses along Bayport, including Ryan’s Cleaners, Tookie’s Burgers, and Laredo’s Tex-Mex Cafe have already closed or relocated ahead of the roadwork that plans to turn 146 between Red Bluff Rd. and Clear Creek — currently 4 lanes — into 12.
The property is indicated in the drawing below by the triangle just south of 2nd St., bisected by magenta lines that mark a sidewalk. A new northbound feeder runs between the property and what would be an overpass carrying the highway’s main lanes:
A video that flies over renderings of the highway, however, doesn’t show anything new in the triangle’s place. About 1 minute in, it zooms past the planned exit for Kenneth Royal Dr. just north of the law office. When the camera reaches 2nd St., it does a 180 above the traffic island:
Here it is shrouded in mist:
- Valentine Law building [Rick Nagel on Facebook]
- SH146.com [City of Seabrook]
- SH 146 – Red Bluff to south of Galveston/Harris County Line [TxDOT]