Houston Architectural History

Architecture is a significant cultural component of an area. Architecture can be unique based on the builder’s use of materials, technique, and style. Beyond a façade, the architecture of a space provides a cultural story of the area. Houston architectural history can offer insight into its legacy as a commercial and industrial city.


Historic Downtown Houston, TX

Architectural history in Houston TX is a diverse collection of structures which range from small residential cottages to  high-rise commercial and residential buildings. The oldest and most significant area of Houston architectural history can be found downtown where hundreds of structures have been documented and listed.

The largest area of historic significance downtown is Main Street Market Square. Here you can find a large number of civic and commercial sites that reflect architectural history in Houston TX and date back to around 1860. Some of the buildings you can find here include:

  • Magnolia Brewery and Ballroom – Constructed in 1912
  • Commercial National Bank – Constructed in 1904
  • Stuart Building – Constructed in 1880
  • Henry Brashear Building – Constructed in 1882
  • Baker-Meyer Building – Constructed in 1870

Each represents the unique architectural history in Houston TX and you can find a range of architectural styles just in Main Street Market Square alone. From the symmetrical, decorative Beaux-Arts style of the Commercial National Bank to Victorian style commercial buildings, the area represents the growth of a city during across the decades.

As you can image, historically significant sites and buildings listed in the NRHP or as a SAL are protected by state and federal law to preserve an area’s culture and history. Because of the original use of materials and techniques are not so much in use today, renovation projects can prove very detrimental to the historical significance of these sites.


Renovation Architecture and Design

Proper renovation projects can maintain or protect buildings of historic significance. Careful research of Houston architectural history and local regulations can help the project run smoothly.

For the best in environmental services and preservation, hire the right team. ESE Partners can provide responsible, focused solutions for your development project. From research, design, to construction, ESE Partners delivers problems solving for a number of industry and projects and can help you understand the environmental risks of your project.


Click here to view ESE Partners’ Natural & Cultural Resources Services page.