May 15, 2008
New Whole Foods coming

It's to be built near where I used to live, on the last open plot of land in what's now a pretty dense corridor.

Whole Foods Market plans to build a store between downtown and River Oaks as part of a 13-acre development that will include apartments and shops.

The Austin-based natural and organic grocery chain will lease the northeast corner of West Dallas and Waugh from the Finger Cos., the firms said Tuesday.

Alongside the market, the Houston-based developer is preparing to build a six-story, 445-unit apartment complex on the property. Construction will start early next year.

"It's a great intersection," president and CEO Marvy Finger said. "It's very exciting."

Plans for the site, along West Dallas between Montrose and Waugh, call for additional retail space and possibly a high-rise residential tower.

Finger said the project will tie into the AIG office complex, to the north of the site.

Years ago, when I lived on Van Buren just off of West Dallas, there was a little family-owned cafeteria where this is now - I can't remember the name any more, but it had been there for decades. It closed in 1994 or so and was eventually torn down, leaving the now-vacant lot that is to be built on. Most of the south side of West Dallas, from Waugh where the CVS and Pei Wei now are all the way down to LaRue, across the street from Nino's and Vincent's restaurants, was vacant as well. It made for some good places to let your dog run around back then, but it's all townhouses now.

"That whole corridor is getting very urban," said Scott Shillings, senior vice president of Staubach Retail.

Area land prices are more than $100 per square foot, according to David Cook of real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield.

No kidding. You can see what some of the neighboring area looks like in my Montrose Density photo essay. There are still the lots at Montrose to develop, but once this and the new development on the site of the old Allen House apartments are built, pretty much all of West Dallas from Shepherd to I-45 will be a very dense, very urban corridor. It's a huge change from even ten years ago.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 15, 2008 to Elsewhere in Houston


Posted by: Temple Houston on May 15, 2008 11:53 AM