An article on our project by Allyn West written for Swamplot


Good Brick Award recipients purchase historic grocery building

Swamplot has reported that Good Brick Award winners Bennie Flores Ansell and David Ansell have purchased the historic Zax Grocery Store, 2020 Hardy Street, in the Near North Side and plan to restore the building with commercial space on the first floor and apartments on the second. Another Good Brick recipient, Joe Meppelink, is the architect for the project.

The late Victorian commercial building had stood vacant for several years when the heirs of the previous owner spoke with Preservation Houston in 2012 looking for a buyer for the property, which their real estate agent was marketing as a teardown. Preservation Houston sent information about the building to potential investors with experience in renovations and restorations.

The Ansells purchased the property last month and have started a website,, posting progress reports and displaying some of the items they found while cleaning out the building. The couple received a Good Brick in 2011 for the sympathetic addition to their house in the Old Sixth Ward Historic District.

Zax Grocery Store (c. 1902)
Photo by David Bush

Greater Houston Preservation Alliance dba Preservation Houston.
Preservation Houston is supported in part by a grant from the City of Houston
through the Houston Arts Alliance.

5 Replies to “Press”

  1. Hello, we just discovered your project, bravo for saving the building! I am involved in rescuing goods from the Shudde Brothers Hat Company on Trinity Street, I wish I had known of your project as well! Do you know if there were any old Fluorescent light fixtures in the building from the 1940’s/ 1950’s? I will come see your progress as soon as possible, Chris

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