The Heights remains a hotspot for retail and residential development, and some of Houston’s most prominent real estate firms are taking notice.
The local branch of Stream Realty Partners, a firm that leases 5 million square feet of space across Houston for a wide variety of landlords, usually focuses on large retail developments in Houston’s suburbs, but, as managing director Mark Sondock tells CultureMap, the company looks for smaller opportunities in growing neighborhoods, too.
A desire to be part of the white hot Heights real estate market led the company to acquire land at the intersection of 20th, Studewood, and North Main for a new development it’s calling the Crossroads at Cavalcade. The 3,500-square-foot center will complement an adjacent tract being developed by Chris Dray of NewQuest properties. Although they have different owners, Stream and NewQuest are working together to ensure the properties share both design elements and parking.
“We’re pretty late to the Heights, but it’s an area we’ve always kept our eyes on,” Stream associate Andrew Bagnall explains. “We looked at the fringes of the Heights to figure out where the Heights is moving to . . . Retail fundamentals tell you if you’re at a major intersection, you’re at a good spot.”
Essentially, the developers are betting that the growth of 20th that has already seen businesses like Steel City Pops and Birds Barbershop join staples like Jenni’s Noodle House will continue. They predict the street will become the area’s next walkable corridor like White Oak and 19th Street.
“If you’re just looking at the pure real estate, it’s very good,” Sondock says. “To be able to have that many roads converging at one point, being on the hard corner, in an area with hard gentrification that’s already started, you can just see it. It’s pretty exciting.”
As for prospective tenants, Stream is open to a wide array of possibilities. Since NewQuest will likely open a restaurant on the neighboring tract, Sondock and Bagnall are looking for something that will pair well, like a dessert concept, coffee bar, or juice bar. They also want something that will enhance the neighborhood, whether that’s retail like some of the recent arrivals at Heights Mercantile or a doctor’s office.
“One thing we’ve seen is service groups, a dentist, an orthodontist, something like that, Bagnall says. “These groups are paying to be close to the population base, and I think residents benefit from it.“
Construction will begin once they find the right tenants. Expect the new center to open sometime next year.