Montrose is arguably Houston’s epicenter of weirdness and creativity.
But many fear its best years are over.
Hippie magazines, indie radio stations and newspapers and music venues spawning the careers of musical legends all dot Montrose’s past.
What Austin is to the state of Texas, some say such is Montrose to Houston.
The original punks, hippies and artists will tell you now, though, Montrose is dead, and gentrification is to blame:
“You certainly aren’t going to find that old Montrose spirit in Montrose anymore,” proprietor of the indie radio station Earthwire M. Martin said in an interview. “My old hood has been gentrified beyond the point which I feel welcome in it anymore.”
Rising rents and the steady decline of the bohemian scene paint a timeline of the fizzling heyday of Montrose, including many major milestones, such as the Westheimer Street Festival moving out of the area, Earthwire closing its doors and losing Pride to downtown.
KPFT, the last indie radio station, may close soon, as well.
Some, however, aren’t convinced Montrose is dead, believing the differences to be part of perpetual changes:
“Forever and ever and ever, people will constantly say how THEIR good ole’ days are better than the current youths,” Omar Aftra, founder of Free Press Houston said on the subject. “Let them have it. You had yours.”