Watch This Heights House Get Laid Low

It’s one thing to see Houston’s demolitions cleaned up and presented in a tidy list every morning; it’s another to gawk at the raw carnage — or sit through a video of it, at least. Swamplot reader Kevin Jackson posts this 10-minute chronicle of destruction of 332 E. 25th St. in the Heights, doomed in the Daily Demolition Report on Friday.

Video: theoriginalkj

26 Comment

  • We were walking the dogs past the pile of rubble last night and wondered aloud what had been there.

    This is great video. It is amazing to see a house that had probably 80 years’ worth of upkeep and investment, and saw all stages of life within, get chewed to pieces by the uncaring, unyielding arm of the wrecking machine. Just tears into it like it was made of tinder. Really fascinating.

  • Ian, you had all of that correct, except it wasn’t the “…uncaring, unyielding arm of the wrecking machine…” that destroyed this home; rather, the actual ‘human’ who caused it. For what, a big house (or worse) that won’t fit into the neighborhood? If you walked by it, it must be in your neighborhood- good luck

  • It saddened me greatly to see the little bungalow torn apart. It would have been better to remodel and add-on. So goes the Heights.

  • I watched about 3 minutes of the demolition. It’s amazing how sturdy that little house was. As the bucket knocked through the house nothing else shook or moved.

  • @John: I meant in a literal sense, but kind of wandered into hyperbole there. It was amazing to watch a huge piece of impersonal machinery literally tear through a little bungalow like it was made of matchsticks.

    I do live in the neighborhood, in a cottage home which I am very attached to and continually improving, so that it doesn’t one day fall to a similar fate as other unmaintained homes in the area.

  • Looks like a fun job!

  • It’s always sad to see a 93 y/o bungalow being demolished instead of renovated. The video quality isn’t great, but the house didn’t appear to be in terrible shape.
    Also, interesting that nobody bothered to grab the big stash of mail from the mailbox before the demo.

  • So was it well built, or in bad shape, or both, and if so, would it have paid to have it relocated and renovated? The preservationists, myself included, continue to not show up with money in hand, so down the bungalow goes.

  • They should have imploded it! Oh my bad, it’s not the old Macy’s!

  • I stood on the porch of this home moments before the demolition, and I can tell you that this house was falling apart. I could stand in place with legs apart and rapidly sway back and forth and hear the house groaning and trying to keep from falling – it was THAT bad. If you notice in the video, there was no insulation in the walls or attic, so I’m sure the home was expensive to heat and cool, and the ceiling 2 of the rooms was strangely only about 7 feet high. The plan is to build only 2 homes on this huge Heights lot. I was surprised by this. The developer could have squeezed 3-4 homes on this lot, but apparently that is not the plan.

  • Very few of these old houses had insulation in the walls or attic, the houses were built to vent, etc–and you have to destroy the original wood to get insulation in the walls–watching this demolition tells you that the house was sound–I’m sure many of the great houses that have fallen in disrepair would groan, Keith–groan at your description of them as I do—this house could have and should have been saved–the house or whatever that replaced it will not be built by the same level of craftsmanship, that’s a fact we should all groan about

  • @Kevin: I have a 1920s bungalow. No insulation in the walls. It only costs @$700 to blow in insulation in the attic. My heating bill is never over $100. AC is never over $300. And I have some pretty terrible windows that need to be repaired. Porches on bungalows tend to rot very easily as they are more exposed to the elements. But, repairing a porch is pretty easy the foundation isn’t damaged. I had a guy pull up all the boards on my porch and replace the rotted ones with new lumber. Few hundred including materials.

    I have seen far worse than this get lovingly restored. 1505 Allston was left to rot and is now one of the most beautiful houses in the Heights. But, the builders have always been able to write bigger checks than those looking to preserve.

  • Huge lot? It’s less than 6000 sq ft. Sure it’s on the corner and the alley, so it can accommodate multiple structures better than other lots of the same size, but I wouldn’t call it huge.

    But the price is astonishing. Lot value in Sunset Heights now over $200K. Yikes.

  • Let me be clear, I have no ownership connection to this property, I’m just a nearby property owner. I thought the house was adorable and I wish it would have been saved.

  • It always puts a tear of JOY in my eye to see a shitgalow being torn down to be replaced with something that actually has value to people, not just termites.

  • We just got the news over the weekend that the 1928 brick duplex bungalow we rent is a goner and facing this same fate…

  • Thanks for another constructive and interesting comment, commonsense.

  • By the way, I happen to live in a wonderful “shitgalow” myself, and after restoring it for the last year after buying it in “fixer-upper” condition, I now have a source of tremendous satisfaction and utility value, as well as a store of significant equity.

    I am going to go home and do some more work on it tonight, warding off the wrecking ball from my 1k sqft, 1-story house on a shady 5k sqft lot, where there could easily be 3 townhomes, just to piss you off.

  • You GO IAN!!!!!

  • Same here Ian, and I’m on a corner to boot. My yard could accomodate three oriented-strand-board monsters.
    Instead it has fruit trees, a vegetable garden, shed and a workshop.

  • Ian, you certainly have the right to do so since its your property, but a couple of holdouts here and there are not going to change the tide of war. If you can’t be bought out, you will eventually be taxed out, or will leave on your own when the Heights will be unrecognizable to you very soon.

  • Going with the common Swamplot commenter argument that new building materials are always better than old ones, I have to assume that the wrecking machine would have just bounced off a new townhome. That’s a video I would like to see.

  • Sad people can’t appreciate the bungalows. Granted they are small for today’s “more is more” lifestyle, but how much space does a body really need?
    It’s economics, but the trend toward the giant themed faux boxes (Croix) are destroying the neighborhood character. Latest case in point : 1527 Harold. This one pays homage to the Flinstones, but with a touch of luxe (copper downspouts/gutters). Really. What’s next – flying buttresses? Way out of character. Completely overshadows the 2 unique bungalows to its immediate west. No doubt if will be fortressed after all is said and done. 2 nice bungalows were recently trashed in the 1500 and 1600 blocks of Kipling, and a 1700 block Kipling duplex is up for demo next. With imagination and a good architect, each could have been transformed such that it appeal to buyers. I did it with my house – took 1 year, but the transformation to amazing modern craftsman was remarkable.

  • Croix does build some crappola. Got to go through one that went up on our street and it was a POS… the workmanship was shoddy, as in NO attention to detail.

    Looks as if Croix tries to pass off immigrant labor handy-man work as tradesman craftsmanship. Prolly works for the kind of person who would buy that kind of schlock for a home.

  • You know what really sucks? When they do this to a house across the street from you at 7:30am and you just got to sleep at 6am because you tend bar. What sucks even more? When it happens on three separate occasions. But, I can take solace in the fact that I now have three McMansions sitting across the street, each housing a single, childless couple, because heaven knows that the craftsman houses that were there were WAY to small for two people to occupy, what would they do without a gift-wrapping room?

  • I can’t understand why anyone thinks that people who don’t want to live in a bungalow are subhuman(that’s the vibe I’m getting). There is this undercurrent that anyone who wants to live in a house with modern amenities (like closets) ought to move to Katy, or Magnolia, or The Woodlands, and don’t deserve to have their desired lifestyle in a convenient close in location.