Westbury, Houston

Our first home purchase was in Westbury, a post-war neighborhood in Houston, Texas.  A three-bedroom, two-bathroom ranch, our house was duplicated over and over throughout Westbury–an early example of the ubiquitous tract home.

Our first little rancher, how I loved you.

A typical street scene in Westbury.


Not long after we moved in, we discovered the ruins of Westbury Square on West Bellfort; and it immediately became a thing of my dreams.  Developed by William J. Wortham, Jr., Westbury Square was the hub of the neighborhood in the 1960s and 70s with shops, restaurants, and theater–a forerunner of the new urban living such as Glenwood Park.   By the time I moved in, Home Depot had claimed a portion of the land and the remaining square had long fallen into disrepair, yet a few businesses remained.  I would often stop by one of the antique shops to catch the latest rumor of its revitalization.  There always seemed to be some buzz that someone was going to resurrect this old relic.  I stopped by this last February, and I’d venture to say that all hope is gone.

Those who grew up in Westbury during the Square’s heyday, have lots of good memories to share.

Click here for Westbury images from the golden years.


Nearby at the corner of Chimney Rock and West Bellfort is the Westbury Centerette, another place I had hoped would be renewed.  Right now it is vacant save one laundromat at the very end.

You are an optimist if you don’t see the irony in this photo.

They still have soul, don’t they?


  1. We hope places like this find a new life before it going into complete ruin. It seems to have a very comfortable human scale. These places have a chance if they are near inexpensive spots that artists/creatives can homestead. I’d guess Houston has grown so much it’s left a lot of these places behind.

  2. Wow! This post brought back a ton of memories for me! I grew up in the area and remember going to Tuesday Morning at Westbury Square with my mom during the holidays. Being a kid, I was immediately bored and would run around browsing the shops – it was better than the mall. Hopefully, an investor or someone will come in and help give Westbury Square the boost it needs!

  3. Peggy says:

    I feel this way about Six Flags Mall and how it used to be so full of fun shops. Not to mention, very close to home. Since I don’t enjoy shopping, it’s a real chore driving the distance to pick up needed things. It’s amazing how some old relics do well in another life, others don’t.

  4. They do indeed still have soul. Hopefully someday someone will restore them. Your photos are gorgeous and show what beauty still is there.

  5. That store sign said it all. Sometimes I wonder why city leaders allow little or big neighborhoods to fall apart. I wonder why the people in those towns don’t fight for their neighborhoods. I wonder if they let them go down so then big development can come in buy it all up very cheap and then rebuild and make huge profits. I once read an article about a area in NY that had so many slum lord buildings, so the city repossess them (because they owed so much in fines) Then told the tenants they could own their own apartments for the price of clean up and repair labor to these buildings after they were painted new plumbing electrical and so on each tenant owned a percentage of the building. Talk about pride of ownership The pride people took once they actually owned something that they NEVER thought they had a chance of ever owning was a unbelievable

  6. Ugh! Sad! It’s like those business lost their soul! Love the blue tiled wall though!

  7. I love your perspective…

  8. Cristal says:

    I don’t ever remember it being a good part of town so it was neat to see those old pictures of it in it’s heyday. You, uh, forgot to mention the gunshots you would hear from the house…..

  9. I remember Westbury Square. It was a bit risque in my day since I went to Bellaire to be seen anywhere over there! ha. I have an affinity to that style of house, which is what I’m living in now – gotta love good bones.

  10. Cara Hoffman says:

    I grew up there! I graduated form Westbury High School back when it was considered “beautiful Southwest Houston”! Does anyone remember Fred saying that? Oh well! we would go the the pizza place at Westbury Square after friday night football games. When I was even younger I remember there being a GREAT pet shop there too! Thanks for the pics. Times goes on!

  11. Francoise Sell says:

    What a surprise, Westbury Square. I grew up off of Hillcroft and Willowbend. I played around the fountain at Westbury Sqaure when my mother was getting her haircut. Many hours were spent in all the shops. The needlepoint/yarn/knitting shop is still in business has moved over to Meyerland. I still take my mother there when in town.

  12. I was 14 years old in 1978 and would spend time with friends at Westbury Square until the summer of 1980. We had a lot of fun there. Bought my first pack of cigarettes at the pizza parlor there and used to use that area as a short cut to the high school. Makes me sad to see these pictures as that was a magical place for me as a boy.

  13. I remember the Square back in it’s heyday. We didn’t live in Houston yet but had relatives that lived on Hillcroft. The 80’s oil bust era was tough on a lot of different sections of Houston, Westbury was no exception. It certainly is booming now, it is just too bad the Square got is SUCH bad shape, plus the Home Depot section that took out the very best part. The square is now for sale. I don’t see any hope of saving it though. It’s a shame, since the neighborhood has largely come back it could certainly support it. BTW – as a side note the very coolest houses in Westbury are the old 1959 Parade of Homes grouping on Warm Springs, there between about Mullins and where it curves at the west end just this side of Hillcroft. You will notice a lot more architectural “punch” on that block than in the balance of the neighborhood.

  14. I see a “for sale” sign on the property now. Late November, 2010, noticed it.

  15. Mielipide kehitysvammainen tappo jakarta anders onneton kulttuurinen selostaa massiivinen.

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