Grand Motel West, 4925 W Madison Demolished :(
Sit and Stew
Date: September 13, 2013 09:25AM
Yesterday I was traveling down Madison just W of Cicero Avenue and I was shocked and saddened to see that they knocked down the old Grand Motel West/Esquire Lounge. Does anyone have any info or pictures of this place? I was told it was built in 1959 and it was unique as far as motel designs went. It was of the "courtyard fortress" design with little to no ornamentation on the outside, and 2 courtyards in the inside. I never had the pleasure of staying there and the last time I remember it being open, it did not have a very good reputation.
I don't know when they knocked it down, but it made me sad to see it go. Sure, it was an eyesore and a source of blight to some but I always remember it being there. It's kind of like a piece of your past has just been stripped away, as small of a piece it may have been....
I have to wonder about the viability of this motel as time went on. Having been built around 1959, I would assume that the neighborhood was in transition around that time or soon would be. I know that the farther east you go into Douglas Park, East Garfield Park and the like, the white flight started earlier. Austin (this property is in SE Austin, a stones throw from the border) did not change until later, the years I am not sure of.
Any takers? I know there has to be a few Austinites in here, or at least a knowledgeable person!