The downtown post office in Houston is set to be redeveloped. It sits on a 16-acre site. A real estate competition is to be held in 2012 for teams of graduate students who are studying real estate. Each team will create plans for actual large size building complexes. They will do financial studies, create drawings and do other planning in a two week period. The plans are to be applied to developments of the new post office, however, this is not an actual project.
The competition is held annually. The Gerald D. Hines Urban Design Competition sets up a hypothetical project. There are plans to develop the new post office in the future, but not at this time.
The competition will focus on the USPS location, which is considered an integral site to enhance the downtown area, including the Historic District. The building was offered for sale in 2009 due to the Postal Service having financial losses. Many plans have been suggested since then for new uses that this plot of land can be used for.
Finalists in the competition will display their plans at the end of March. They will then be judged in Seattle. There will be four winning proposals that will win prize money in the amount of $80,000. A large number of teams (154) applied to compete. They came from 64 universities in the United States and Canada. A total of 770 students are slated to take part in this real estate competition.