Northwest Mall July 2018 Update

Well, we’re coming to the end of July, which means it’s finally time for another biannual trip to Northwest Mall, before you read any further not much has happened. However, everything is still there, at present there are no plans for demolition. The last stated plans were to remodel and redevelop the inside with a possible grocer taking the space of a former anchor. I have since been contacted by the group wishing to purchase and redevelop the land, my update is at the end of this post.

Nothing much has changed with Palais Royal. They are using the former mall entrance as sales floor, as opposed to keeping it open. The exterior plants and grass are all well kept.

I wanted to include a picture to show that not only are the lawns and hedges trimmed, but the edging is even nice!

The stage is still assembled, which you figure they might try to sell if they were completely serious about selling the mall.

Some of the stray items left behind at Thirsty’s former location have been removed.

This cart is the final visible cart in the mall. I’m not sure if the carts have been sold yet. Prior to closing most of the carts were moved to the former Movie Theatre hallway.

The Dryer’s signage remains attached to the building. Sticking my fingers between the glass I could tell that the A/C temperature inside the mall was either higher than Palais Royal or completely off.

Looking down towards the former JC Penny’s entrance you can see that everything in the hallways has been removed. The former movie theater hallway no longer had carts or kiosks in it when it was converted to an emergency exit.

This is the final exterior mall entrance with any access. The movie theater hallway is open to allow access to the emergency exit for the club. However you’re not able to access the rest of the building.

The former Foley’s remains untouched. Even the original F door handles remain attached. You would think that someone might attempt to make off with them, however security seems to primarily patrol this side of the mall.

The 610/290 interchange construction has died down enough that Entrance 7 could easily be reconnected with the feeder. However, it seems highly unlikely this will happen at this point. I truly believe this mall has its days numbered.

This construction lot honestly, may be one of the few things preventing redevelopment. It’s likely that this government acquired contract has some sort of lease stipulation preventing breaking of the lease without a penalty.

The Northwest Mall is open for business along with 3 of the 4 business signs have been removed. These are on the former Macy’s building. The only remaining store from this sign has bene Palais Royal for the past few years.

The former front entrance, or “Entrance A” has been completely covered for a while now, construction dumpsters which were in the service courts have been removed.

Again, all but the Palais Royal Sign has been removed. This was on the former JC Penny’s/Antique Mall building. I wonder why they have never made any attempts to cover the non-existent stores.

Unfortunately, I really think we’ve hit the end of any kind of full mall restoration. We may see retail based redevelopment, if the idea of placing the high speed rail station there pans out. Otherwise we must play the waiting game to see what happens next. If you enjoyed this update check out my past entries on the same topic.

7/24 Update: I was contacted by Michael Moore Regional Vice President of External Affairs for Texas Central Partners (The Company which is building the bullet train between Dallas and Houston) who informed me that Northwest Mall has officially been selected as the location for the Houston Station. He also said “Texas Central has an option on the land and will close after we finish our environmental review by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)”

This will prove to be a fitting use for the old mall. As opposed to another new shopping center they have chosen a unique modern design, which matches the nearby HISD buildings. Mr. Moore also provided a video showing what the proposed station will look like. https://texascentral.sharefile.com/d-s72321f159d842aaa

About

My Name is Mike! I'm the founder, and owner of Houston Historic Retail. I love retail, and I love Houston. Please give any feedback you have!

9 comments on “Northwest Mall July 2018 Update
  1. Anonymous says:

    What a shame for such wasted space!

  2. Clyde says:

    Mannnnnn omg this mall brings so much memories even though I was in my teens when I last went. For me, and probably others on the northside, northwest mall is probably one of the most nostalgic and kinda sad structure. Last time I stepped in this mall was 2006 and that’s when it was still obvious that it’s days were numbered.

    I only went to see my ex-girlfriend who worked at baskin robbins lol. kind of appropriate to me that this mall may be history a long with that.

    thanks for the write up and pictures!

  3. Synonymous says:

    Out of curiosity, why do you refer to the north wing as the former movie theater hallway?

    As long as I remember we saw the Empire Strikes Back & Ghostbusters & other movies at the Festival 6 which wasn’t attached to the mall at all. It was a free standing building that stood right south of where the Shell/Burger King now stand & east of the mall itself.

    Was there a movie theater in that part of the mall when it opened in the 60s?

    • Mike says:

      You’re completely correct. I never made it to Northwest Mall until after the movie theater closed. So I made the assumption that the theater was part of the mall. The building I’m talking about was originally a Woolworth’s and later became a club.

  4. cm says:

    Cool pics, shame the model railroad club was booted.. Might also want to spell check my friend.. 🙂

  5. Phil Valentine says:

    I remember so well that time in the fall of 1968 when I opened Kinney’s Shoes in Northwest Mall. I moved here from New Orleans to open this new store. We had a new venture in young women’s clothes next door – Susie Casuals, part of the Kinney/Woolworth family. I worked happily there for about eight years before changing careers. It was a great time to be in retail and in the mall there.

  6. Tera says:

    Hey Michael! My name is Tera and I’m a Producer with KPRC, Channel 2. I’m interested in speaking with you. Please give me a buzz at REDACTED.
    Thanks

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