Fiesta store closing to make room for new development

June 27, 2012 4:05:19 PM PDT
Some big changes are planned for a well-known and well-traveled area of Houston. Dunlavy and West Alabama will soon be home to a new retail center, replacing what's currently there -- a Fiesta grocery store, along with several small businesses.

When you've been around 90 years like Robert Cook, you've seen change all around you.

He said, "I don't like the idea that the old city is going to be behind us,"

Growth and development surround the quiet older neighborhoods. Even his barber shop isn't immune.

"It's a revival for this area," said Lupe Garcia, owner of the Best Little Barber Shop in Texas.

The shopping center where it's located, along with Fiesta, will be torn down to make room for a new multi-story development including apartments and retail.

Garcia said, "It's time. This center needs a little facelift."

Lupe Garcia will have to relocate the barbershop she owns that's been around for decades. She hopes her hundreds of customers will follow her.

"Change is good every now and then," she said.

The project is not the first of its kind inside the loop. Similar developments like West Ave. on Kirby are already open. Another development is planned at West Alabama and Weslayan.

The urban developments are a direct result of research. A Rice University annual study shows more Houstonians are looking for a "less automobile-dependent, more urbanized lifestyle."

"Obviously some of these neighborhoods, they want to keep the history, you know how they are," said area resident Faust Vaquera. "We need businesses and money flowing through the neighborhood."

That's why Garcia says she wouldn't mind being right back here once the development is complete.

"It's really coming along," she said. "I just hope they work on the streets a bit to accommodate this new development."

The last day for the Fiesta store will be Sunday, July 15. A spokesperson says all the employees will be relocated to other stores.

Finger Companies is developing this property and they say their plans will be finished with that eight-story complex in June 2014.

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