some call the area the “fairgrounds,” others “wedgewood-houston,” now names like “weho” and “soho” are cropping up as well. it’s hard to say what will stick but what is certain is the neighborhood is seeing a huge resurgence in recent months.
this week, core development announced its plans to build on an 8-acre lot they currently have under contract. they are in the early stages right now, talking with the neighbors and getting a game plan. the 8-acres consists of a 5-acre lot on the northwest corner of merritt avenue and martin street (home of a.b. collier wrecking service) and a 3-acre lot on the northeast corner (current home of kirby welding).
core development isn’t the only one investing in the neighborhood. already underway, a five-unit development on southgate called soho flats which developer ewing captial hopes to have completed for spring 2014 and a nine-unit development also on southgate called soho station shooting for a summer completion date. prices are not confirmed but will most likely start around upper $200s.
in recent months, cotten music center and manuel zeitlin architects have both relocated to the community. david lusk gallery will open up after the first of the year at 516 hagan street in an old truck machine shop which has been repurposed into three distinct business spaces.
the neighborhood has long been water cooler talk. the mayor’s very public battle was in the papers everyday a few years back when he identified the fairgrounds as a major development opportunity. the fair was not making a profit, the racetrack was knee deep in tax liens and needing repair and the 117-acre lot had been reduced to a flea market one weekend a month and a few other minor events. the outcry however against change put any sort of redevelopment on the back burner for now. regardless of the future of that property, the community seems to continue to rise up around it with hope and renewal and a thirst for growth.