Urban Exploring - Midtown and Wells Avenue

by Mike Van Houten / Jun 5, 2016

Every so often I like to venture out of my nerd-cave and photograph what's new and good right in my own neighborhood. I live between the Wells Avenue Conservation District and Midtown. My street is actually the dividing line between the two neighborhoods.

New Flowers at Center Street Park

Does this little green space between Holcomb and Center Street officially have a name? It's a beautiful spot, with a lot of shade, anchored by 8 On Center, Brasserie St. James and a charming collection of bungalows lining Holcomb Avenue.

351 East Taylor/865 South Wells

351 East Taylor

Haberae recently acquired these two properties, and immediately began exterior improvements, including new paint, landscaping and more. The adjacent property is also being renovated, shown below.

This impressive iron fence is being designed and built by Ray's Iron Works, a local company.

Aces Tattoo / Culture

Love what Aces Tattoo did with their new location. Big fan of big windows.

Culture will be moving here from their current tiny location further down Virginia Street.

1039 South Virginia Street

Say goodbye to the paint on this once-unattractive building in the heart of Midtown's commercial corridor. 1039 South Virginia Street is being renovated to become retail space. Below is a rendering concept of the finished product.

Orange Is the New Black at Z

Z-bar, or maybe just 'Z' now, is steadily improving upon its former stint as the worst-of-the-worst dive bars on the Virginia Street strip. As if it were participating in an episode of Bar Rescue, first it remodeled, then drastically altered its drink offerings, changing the bar into a 'craft cocktail' style lounge. Was a huuuuuuge improvement. Doesn't that patio look inviting and just scream 'muddle me some strawberries?' Now it looks like the bar is going through a paint overhaul, and is bright orange. It reminds me of the oh-so-controversial orange house Marmot Properties renovated.

Kauboi Izakaya

A new Japanese restaurant is open in Midtown, Kauboi Izakaya...have you been yet?

Love Shack

This used to be one step up from a shed, but it's been re-drywalled, with new exterior walls, new windows, and new-everything. A permit reveals it will be called Franks-a-Lots...which Mike Hidgon over at RGJ and I were debating whether it would be a permanent hot dog stand, or a parking lot service, or maybe a used-car lot.

Scotland Yard Spy Shop / MediFarm

This used to be home to Scotland Yard Spy Shop. But he moved across the street (below) making way for Midtown's new medical marijuana dispensary.

Transcend Interiors

Looks like Transcend Interiors is moving into the final vacant space at the Sticks development in Midtown. Check out their Facebook page.

Sinclair Home

This home on Sinclair Street near Moran has undergone some major renovations and restoration the past couple months. It's looking beautiful! Keep up the good work.


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