History

Formerly the site of the West End Park during the early 20th Century, the area that became the Allen Center was originally considered to be an eastern portion of the Fourth Ward.

Section of a map of Houston from 1913, showing the location of the park.
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On the heels of the Texas Revolution, two New York real estate promoters, John Kirby Allen and Augustus Chapman Allen were seeking a location where they could begin building "a great center of government and commerce."

In August 1836, they purchased 6,642 acres of land from T. F. L. Parrot, John Austin's widow for $9,428. The Allen brothers first landed in the area where the confluence of White Oak Bayou and Buffalo Bayou served as a natural turning basin, now known as Allen's Landing.
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West End Park was a baseball park in Houston from 1905 to the 1940s. It was the primary ballpark for the city when it was constructed.

The New York Yankees of the American League play against the Houston Buffaloes of the Texas League at West End Park in Houston during a 1914 exhibition game.

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The opening of Interstate 45 in the 1950s separated the eastern portion from the rest of the Fourth Ward; that portion became the Allen Center and is now considered to be a part of Downtown Houston.​

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Upon it's completion, the Allen Center buildings were among the tallest in Downtown Houston. Throughout the years, Allen Center has been home to some of the nation's most notable companies.

Allen Center as seen from a historic aerial photograph in 1978 shortly after it's completion.

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