Below is the text of a letter to Kevin Kirton of Buckhead Investment Partners from Ramona Davis, Executive Director of the Greater Houston Preservation Alliance.
October 4, 2007
Mr. Kevin M. Kirton
Chief Executive Officer
Buckhead Investment Partners
2536 Amherst, Suite F
Houston, Texas 77005
Dear Mr. Kirton:
I am writing on behalf of Greater Houston Preservation Alliance to express our opposition to your proposed development at 1717 Bissonnet. We are deeply concerned about the negative impact your project will have on surrounding historic districts. A 23-story skyscraper is incompatible with two-lane streets and neighborhoods of two-story homes.
There are many sections of Houston where high-rise development is appropriate; this is not one of those areas. Your project site is located within a half-block of the Boulevard Oaks National Register Historic District, in close proximity to the Broadacres National Register Historic District and abuts a potential National Register district in Wroxton Court. Several individual National Register properties are also located in Boulevard Oaks and Broadacres.
Since the site is adjacent to potential and designated National Register districts, work associated with your project may require review under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. The review process is designed to protect National Register-listed and National Register-eligible properties from the adverse effects of any public or private project that receives federal funds, a federal loan or federal loan guarantee, or may involve a federal permit. This includes, but is not limited to, site preparation, remediation and abatement, infrastructure improvements and construction financing. We are forwarding a copy of this letter to the Texas Historical Commission, which administers the National Register in Texas, to make them aware of potential impacts on National Register properties.
GHPA will continue to support the efforts of civic associations representing the affected neighborhoods. We strongly encourage you to reconsider this project. With sensitivity and imagination, you can create a development that is financially rewarding and in keeping with the scale and character of another, more appropriate area.