A duet in Italian: Carrabba's plans new buildings at original location
To most Houstonians, there's only one Carrabba's — the location on Kirby at West Main St. owned by the Mandola and Carrabba families, not the national chain.
But now it looks like even the original is getting an update. As Swamplot first reported, a new building to replace the original restaurant is in the works, as well as a second, larger restaurant on the north side of West Main and a parking garage.
First step: building a new 275-car parking garage one block to the north, at the northwest corner of Branard and Argonne. Next, a new and larger Carrabba’s (marked [A] in the site plan above) would go up directly south of the existing building, which would remain open during construction. Once the new digs are complete, they’ll tear down the existing restaurant and put in a parking lot and porte-cochere in its place. Two more restaurants — one possibly named Grace’s, and one with office space upstairs — are planned for blocks north of Branard, one facing Kirby and the other at Argonne.
In addition to securing variances on off-street parking from the city, Carrabba's might be the first to take advantage of the new transit corridor rules — in exchange for a pedestrian area and an entrance on Kirby, they can set the new structures much closer to the street. This despite the fact that construction of the University line has been delayed indefinitely until METRO's financial situation improves.