The Alabama Bookstop Due To Become An Office-Supply Store? (Updated)

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

The Alabama Bookstore, the former Alabama Theater, the beloved Montrose icon, is going to be turned into....a Staples?

That seems to be the indication from the scoop Swamplot has posted -- architectural drawings the show the property's sloped floor being leveled out by a cement pour to make one big-box retail space. The drawings, by the architectural firm Heights Venture Architects, have "Staples" written on them. (We've contacted HVA for further info but haven't heard back; their website shows much experience working with large retail chains.)

Says Swamplot:

A local construction company is currently taking bids from subcontractors for a rather complete interior demolition. The plans, prepared by Heights Venture Architects, show major alterations to the floor, walls, and ceilings.

The theater's original sloped floor will be buried under a new concrete slab; wood floors inserted during the 1983 bookstore conversion will be removed. For now, the balcony will remain.

You'll have to click over to see the technical plans; we're not sure about the copyrights on the stuff.

The site, which was a theater back in the glory days of movie palaces and a bookstore for the last 20 years, closed last September.

Since then it's been the subject of various rumors, and has been cited whenever annoyed residents grumble about Weingarten Realty and its penchant for homogenizing every piece of Houston property it owns.

This latest development seems to be the most solid information yet. (Although, as Neil Young notes in "Alabama," his song [possibly] about the site, "The devil fools with the best-laid plans.")

So rejoice, Houston: You're getting a(nother) office-supply store!!

Update: Stephen Jocivich of HVA tells Hair Balls he can't say what's going in the space: "It is not our policy to divulge or discuss what our clients' plans or projects may be," he says. A Weingarten Realty official tells the Houston Chronicle "several tenants" are being considered.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.