Walmart Coming — Everybody Out!

WALMART COMING — EVERYBODY OUT! What residents of the Heights Plaza Apartments at 205 Heights Blvd. found on their doors Wednesday: Letters explaining that the Ainbinder Company has bought the entire complex and that no tenants’ leases will be renewed. For residents whose leases are up in December, that’s 30 days’ notice. Ainbinder will be extending Koehler St. through the property and building 2 strip centers on the remaining portions — as part of the Washington Heights District development that will include a new Walmart. “Although the sale of the complex to the Walmart developer wasn’t a surprise,” explains reporter Miya Shay, “the pace of the move out did catch some residents off guard. Developer Michael Ainbinder says he’s willing to work with residents who can’t find a place before their lease expires. . . . The last lease runs out at the end of April, and the developer says as soon as that happens, they will begin demolishing the property.” [abc13; previously on Swamplot]

28 Comment

  • Thanks wal mart those hard working folks really didn’t need a place to live, now did they? Real shame, for those who may be potentially losing their homes.

  • Cursed on the evil walmart!!!! Just kidding.
    Corey, those hard working folks are not “potentially losing their homes”. They live in appartments and the lease is not being renewed.

  • i blame rich white folks

    if ainbinder didn’t do it someone else would anyways. with the feeder going in, new homes still going up and the amount of expendable income in the area ever increasing, a lot more land will be turned into commercial properties yet.

  • I just find it ironic that proponents said the store is going to help low income folks in the area and yet that’s who is being displaced to build the store.

  • An apartment is still a home, and finding another complex with reasonable rent is never fun. I’m glad I’m out of that rat race, but nonethless I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. Uhm sorry your lease is up, get out…

  • Yeah, it is like when those low income folks were displaced to build the Target on Taylor.

  • I don’t remember anybody claiming Target was going to help low income residents by opening. They were going after the money north of I-10. Walmart is going after that same money.

  • I’d be curious to know what happens to these people after the wrecking ball has come through. Will the folks be homeless? Will they have found their way elsewhere? I’m assuming the latter, but I don’t really know and I think it’s pretty uncommon for many publications to follow-through on this type of article.

  • They’ll likely wind up places like the complex next to Krogers on 11th/North Durham, or on the heights side of Taylor. The complex they’re being extricated from though is a fair bit nicer than those I mentioned. I knew it was only a matter of time, but I still feel for all those affected.

  • I don’t get it. They’re chasing out their target demographic. Oh well. Bing on the guns and fried chicken!!!!

  • Is Dirt Bar going to stay??? Or will Walmart buy them out too?

  • Woohoo! Finally some good news from this whole Wally Mart debacle!

  • If Walmart’s target demographic group was ONLY those apartments, they need to get a new research department.

    I’m sure there are a lot more folks in their “target demographic” than those who will be displaced.

    Like for instance, folks already living in the Durham/11th apartments!!

  • Whatev to all the class haters. Go to the Target on San Felipe just off 610, it’s full of well-to-doer’s. Not being middle-class or higher is not a crime.

  • PYEWACKET2: the point is just the irony, not that there won’t be anyone to shop at the Walmart. People have complained that Walmart opponents are classist, elitist and racist. But, then along comes the Walmart developer and bounces the tenants of good low income housing.

    JessicaN: Walmart is not buying that parcel of property. The Walmart lot is west of Yale. Ainbinder is buying it to put in more retail pads (a strip center in Houston, how innovative!). And, yes, the Dirt Bar will be turned into dirt.

  • The irony was obvious to me, but I’ve been knee deep in this debate since day one, and being pragmatic my view on this did a 180; from the initial knee jerk NIMBY stance, to acceptance. It’s awful that complex is being leveled for a strip center, but shoot it will likely have a Starbucks for all the coffee snobs in the Heights (not serious obviously).

  • After reading many posts from the anti walmart gang I made the inference that some, not all, were opposed to the walmart for classist/elitist reasons. A few individuals were honest enough to post and admit to it. And these same indviduals are probably glad the low income apartments are coming down.
    Darn, I wanted a HEB built there, I am aHEBist.

  • Good riddance. Now stop parking in the bike lane on Heights.

  • Of course the other irony is that the anti-Walmart crowd have persistently told us that noone in Walmart’s target demographic lives in their expanded Heights and now, lo and behold, we seem to be discussing apartment buildings full of people from within that demographic.

  • yeah team walmart

  • Yeah, Jimbo. No one in Walmart’s demographic lives in the area. That has been exactly what people against the Walmart have been saying. They have also been saying that 22,000 cars will try to enter the store at 10 am every Saturday, all of Houston will flood as a result of the additional impervious cover and the City shouldn’t be giving Walmart 600 million dollars to build slave wage factories in China. You nailed it and aren’t making a point by creating an argument no one has ever made.

    But that isn’t as bad as the pro-Walmart argument that the store will generate enough tax revenue to erradicate the national debt, will be the only Walmart within 35 miles for area residents (and the only grocery store within 10 miles) and won’t generate any more traffic than Bistro Zelko.

  • From Jimbo:
    Of course the other irony is that the anti-Walmart crowd have persistently told us that noone in Walmart’s target demographic lives in their expanded Heights and now, lo and behold, we seem to be discussing apartment buildings full of people from within that demographic.

    Ok, now who said that no one in Walmart’s proposed demographic lives in the Heights/West End? That a ridiculous statement. Walmart is clearly trying to appeal to the yuppies who live in the West End townhouses and as well as across the freeway as it is promising organic fruit, farmmer’s markets and chef driven restaurants. Don’t be silly. The point you might be trying to make is that those who are for the Walmart, or at least aare against or enjoy mocking the anti-Walmart group have stated that the real reason people are against Walmart is because those people are elitists and don’t want poor people standing next to them in line at the grocery store. Big distinction, don’t you think?

  • Oh, and sorry for the typos.

  • Has anyone shopped at Walmart lately? The days of totally cheap wares at Walmart are for the most part over. They’ve stopped carrying a lot of brands and the prices aren’t much better than their competitors.

  • Mel, I haven’t got either the time or the inclination to start collating all the times I have read that ridiculous statement but here is the first instance I could find just now.

    From Mary: 9/1/10
    “With the average shopper Household income at $35k they are blowing smoke up everyone’s……nose as to what will really happen. It will not be serving the community – it will be serving people outside of the community pulling off of I-10. It will be trash if it gets built.”

    Oh and people like Mary are not only against the Walmart because they don’t want to be standing in line at the grocery store with poor people, they also don’t even want poor people tempted off the freeway in the vicinity of their Victorian utopia.

  • The last time I went into a Wal-Mart, my eyes turned red from the disinfectant they have to spray in the air. Bed bugs? I looked like a demon. You can’t tell the check out staff from the customers. There are never enough check out lanes open, which really surprises me. I’ve seen people leave filled carts and walk out. Don’t they want to sell? And the customers don’t bother to place carts where they belong in the parking lot. They just throw dirty diapers and trash from their cars in the carts and leave them anywhere. I’m going to Target to buy my Christmas lights from now on.

  • There’s never enough check out lanes open at HEB either.

  • There’s a simple solution to this. Just don’t patronize Walmart and their idea of business in America. If you think the Heights is a Victorian Utopia, go look at it again. Builders have raped the community of it’s original historical charm. Who in their right mind would want to invest there, except maybe Walmart and anyone else who puts business and the dollar above all human dignity and justice? Walmart only recognized in the Heights what they do best.