Page 41 - June2017

Basic HTML Version

Hurricane Ike. The $3 million restoration gutted the structure
almost entirely and rebuilt it to include three art galleries, a
museum store, a classroom, offices, a library, and a kitchen.
Hendley Green also made its first appearance after being
shrouded behind a construction fence for almost two years.
Atop what was previously a parking lot on the corner of 21st
Street next to Hendley Market, Galveston Historical Foundation
refreshed the entire street with a stunning green space complete
with a picnic lawn, trees, a fountain, and seating.
This was also the year that city council finally announced that
the trolley system would indeed be revived; it had been out
of operation since Ike. Then as 2015 drew to a close, Colonel
Bubbie’s shocked the world when it sold its last piece of military
surplus on Christmas Eve after forty-two years of business.
Despite the irreplaceable niche filled by the unique store, the
Colonel W.L. Moody Building in which it was housed had suffered
severe neglect, but fortunately it was promptly purchased by
local entrepreneurs Keith and Genette Bassett, Strand veterans
and proprietors of two of the street’s most sought after shops,
Gracie’s and Bungalow. Currently the building is being rehabbed
into a combination of retail and loft space.
The City of Galveston also contributed to the Strand’s
momentum with the construction of the Galveston Downtown
Intermodal Transportation Center on the corner of 25th Street.
Although it is lacking somewhat aesthetically in comparison
to the Victorian beauties that surround it, the building’s
functionality promises to compensate by linking bus lines with
the soon-to-be revived trolley lines, making it significantly easier
to traverse the island without the hassle of driving and parking.
Most recently, the far eastern end of the Strand has finally
received some much-needed attention. The building on the east
end of Hendley Row, after sporting a construction entrance for
over two years, has at last been restored.
Directly across the street, the Rosenberg Building had been
sitting completely vacant since Ike, crumbling and forgotten.
Finally at the end of 2016, Creative Combinations, the locally
owned contracting company responsible for the stunning
rehabilitation of the orphan’s home on 21st Street into the
Bryan Museum, began work on the 139-year-old structure. The
remodel that has maintained all of the historic integrity of the
building while outfitting it for modern use, is near completion.
Today’s Strand is more than a symbol of Galveston’s resiliency, it
is a testament to the power of small business. From the humble
Graffiti café to the quaintly elegant Riondo’s Ristorante to the
wildly popular Yaga’s Café, from the elegance of The Admiralty
to the charm of Head to Footsies, nearly every last endeavor on
the Strand has come from the creative mind of a small business
Whether it is Brews Brothers with their insanely delicious
burger or Mediterranean Chef and their near thirty years of
business, or the haunted house and the pirate’s adventure, the
building blocks of the modern-day Strand have been crafted by
individuals who have dared to possess the vision of Mitchell and
the spirit of Ike.
Hendley Green
Transit Center
W. L. Moody Building
Rosenberg Building
JUNE 2017 |