Month: July 2021

This decor still provides service “Merchandise”, at American Freight

Once inside you're greeted with a tightly packed storefront, with no defined path. This was one of the worst experiences I've had trying to get around a store, since I was old enough to see over the boxes!

Let’s start off today with a little history of 2665 S Texas 6, Houston, TX 77082. If you’re too young to remember, Service Merchandise was one of the final catalog showroom chains in the U.S., and one of the last to operate in Houston. Their entry into Houston came via acquiring another company named, Wilson’s. Most locations were built next to Office Depot stores, although I’m not sure which chain to trace this to. Service Merchandise was known for selling relatively high quality merchandise at decent prices. While they weren’t a discounter by any stretch, they had pretty nice stuff, …

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This Week in Demolition: A quasi-Cape Cod Colonial, and not much else!

Apologies for the delayed demolition report, command post & HQ for Houston Historic Retail, moved over the weekend! Nothing fascinating today, due to the obviously short list. Expect a Permit Roundup, later this week on HHR! Residential Demolitions 12626 Vindon Dr, Houston, TX 77024– Fonn Villas, Photos 5429 Judalon Ln, Houston, TX 77056– Larchmont, Photos 3822 Olympia Dr, Houston, TX 77019– River Oaks, Photos 2438 McClendon St, Houston, TX 77030– Brantwood, Photos 1715 Monarch Oaks St, Houston, TX 77055– Monarch Oaks, Photos 149 Bolden St, Houston, TX 77029– Clinton Park 4041 Ella Lee Ln, Houston, TX 77027– Oak Estates 8321 …

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Lake Jackson just can’t keep a dang grocery store!

Believe it or not, the Food and Drugs signs are likely original from Safeway, although they would have been red.

My heart always drops a little bit when I hear about a former Safeway shutting down for good. It’s amazing that stores built in the 1970s are still operating as grocery stores, that’s the equivalence of someone in the 2000s shopping at a store that opened in 1950, not impossible but largely unheard as by that point the supermarkets that had been built would be outsized in only a few years. The Lake Jackson Safeway has a somewhat complicated history, or multiple operators having either short bursts of success or measurable failures. Some of this may have to do with …

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Random Retail: Two out of place Big Box Retailers, and Two former Burger Joints

The Gym and a couple of other tenants had obviously gone out of business, but most everything the the former Wal-Mart is open.

Welcome folks, today we’ve got another edition of Random Retail! This week we have a heavy emphasis on a former Wal-Mart, but not enough that it warrants its own post. If you’ve never experienced Random Retail before, well it’s basically a dump of photos I’ve taken that don’t really fit in with anything else I’m doing at the moment. A good portion of these Random Retail photos come from former Wal-Mart #597 at 7075 FM 1960 W., Houston, TX 77069. I had originally planned to go a bit more in-depth on the location, but found myself lacking any good photos …

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This Week in Demolition: As American as Apple Pie!

No story this week, but demolitions are blow. Enjoy your 4th! 1815 Marshall St.   This is a list of the buildings which received a City of Houston demolition permit the week before this post.   Residential Demolitions 3006 Reba Dr, Houston, TX 77019– Avalon Place, Two-Story with Pool, Photos 2324 Peckham St, Houston, TX 77019– Normandy Place, 1940s, Photos 2536 White Oak Dr, Houston, TX 77009– Norhill, 1930s, Photos 1815 Marshall St, Houston, TX 77098– Winlow Place, 1930s Duplex, Photos 1605 Pine Chase Dr, Houston, TX 77055– Glenmore Forest, Photos 4519 Nolda St, Houston, TX 77007– Brunner, Photos …

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A former Safeway with a split personality

Towards the end of their stay here most Safeways had adopted the pylon look as seen in Pearland

When a grocery store closes, it’s not unusual for the space to be subdivided. Over the course of the 20th century, supermarkets became larger and larger, aiming for a broader range. Today’s example is a former Safeway located at 2028 N Main St in Pearland. Holding their grand opening November 11, 1979, the new Safeway was one of Houston’s earliest purpose built superstore locations. The breadth of items available was everything you’d find in a grocery store, a 5 & Dime, and still a little bit more! For example, you could buy small appliances, TVs, socks, shoes, plumbing, and electrical …

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