The Waco Business Newsletter: October 9, 2019

A bi-monthly newsletter investigating the people, places, and policies shaping Waco’s economy.


I'm Austin Meek, Vox of Waco Business News and host of "Downtown Depot," the radio show and podcast where we track the ins and outs of Waco business. Listen live on Fridays at 11:30AM on 103.3 KWBU-FM or stream previous episodes of "Downtown Depot" anytime via Apple PodcastsNPR, and Waco Business News.


The Waco Business Newsletter: October 9, 2019

The former Grand Karem Shrine building, at 701 Washington Avenue, will be refurbished into a Magnolia-branded hotel.

The former Grand Karem Shrine building, at 701 Washington Avenue, will be refurbished into a Magnolia-branded hotel.

LOCAL LINKS

  1. Chip and Joanna Gaines announced they'll open a hotel (pictured above) in the recently-purchased Grand Karem Shrine building in downtown Waco. My biggest surprise here is that the hotel's capacity is 40 rooms, which means they have major designs for events and other activations in the 53,000 SF building. This is a masterstroke for Magnolia and will bring much-needed develpment to Washington Avenue - just in time to be reverted to a two-way street, too! (Magnolia)

  2. McGregor-based TFNB Your Bank For Life will open its fifth location on Elm Avenue in the former Train Waco building. A local bank has been at the top of neighbors' wish lists for years; plaudits go to Megan Henderson of City Center Waco, who helped coordinate the deal, and by David Littlewood, the visionary president of TFNB who will provide East Waco with its first banking institution. Similar to the Magnolia hotel, this a game-changer for East Waco and another sign of legitimacy for the ascendant Elm Avenue corridor. (TFNBTX)

  3. Lais Loewen, a Brazilian immigrant who owns Sabor, a Brazilian food company that debuted at the Downtown Waco Farmer's Market earlier this year, was my most recent Downtown Depot guest. (Waco Business News)

  4. Waco's music scene, which has thrived underground for years, is joining the public party through TV exposure, DJ sets on the radio, and live events. Kevin Tankersley of The Wacoan interviewed three of the ladies leading the charge: Lindsay Liepman of KXXV, MaryJane Evans of 94.5-FM The Beat, and Katie Selman of Keep Waco Loud. I particularly liked Liepman's take on building community through different musical tastes. (The Wacoan)

  5. What else is new? Waco economy sets another record as a strong housing market continues to lift the lid. (The Waco Tribune-Herald)

  6. Three Waco spots - Guess Family, Honky Tonk Kid, and Helberg - all received accolades from the BBQ Snob, Daniel Vaughn, on a recent trip through Central Texas. (Texas Monthly)

A tiny street in Plomin, Croatia, provides the "nooks and crannies" that help make communities feel safe.  Wikimedia Commons

A tiny street in Plomin, Croatia, provides the "nooks and crannies" that help make communities feel safe. Wikimedia Commons

OTHER LINKS

  1. Sir Roger Scruton, an English philosopher and writer who specializes in aesthetics and political philosophy, describes the value of nooks and crannies in urban design. (The American Conservative)

  2. In North Texas, for-sale housing located within neighborhoods is twice as valuable. A discussion on the connection between walkability and profit. (D Magazine)

  3. Why is college so expensive? Why are insurance premiums so high? Where have pensions for working-class people gone? Here's the answer. (The New York Times)

  4. “Planners, developers, and city leaders must work harder to embed underrepresented history in our spaces not only when tensions are high, but as integral components of our efforts to promote inclusive growth." Two writers from the Brookings Institution investigate how to make Black history resonate in the public space. (Brookings)

  5. The French government is investing millions in an initiative to start 1000 new cafes in French villages. The cafe, the village bar, and the diner, are all staples of French community life. (Food and Wine)

  6. The real estate trends that will shape 2020. (Curbed)