One Shell Plaza

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One Shell Plaza
General information
TypeCommercial offices
Architectural styleModernism
Location910 Louisiana Street
Houston, Texas
CountryUnited States
Coordinates29°45′33″N 95°22′04″W / 29.7591°N 95.3677°W / 29.7591; -95.3677Coordinates: 29°45′33″N 95°22′04″W / 29.7591°N 95.3677°W / 29.7591; -95.3677
Completed1971; 47 years ago (1971)
Antenna spire304.8 m (1,000 ft)
Roof218 m (715 ft)
Technical details
Floor count50
Floor area113,900 m2 (1,226,000 sq ft)
Design and construction
ArchitectSkidmore, Owings & Merrill
DeveloperHines Interests Limited Partnership
EngineerSkidmore, Owings & Merrill
Main contractorW. S. Bellows Construction

One Shell Plaza (OSP) is a 50-story, 218 m (715 ft) skyscraper at 910 Louisiana Street in Downtown Houston, Texas. Perched atop the building is an antenna that brings the height to 304.8 m (1,000 ft). At its completion in 1971, the tower was the tallest in the city.


One Shell Plaza was designed by the architectural firm of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Associate architects were Wilson, Morris, Crain & Anderson, and the landscape architects were Sasaki Associates. One Shell Square, in New Orleans and Republic Plaza in Denver, also designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, have designs very similar to that of One Shell Plaza. Like One Shell Plaza, One Shell Square has Shell Oil as a major tenant.


Shell Oil Company, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, was headquartered in this building until 2016.[5][6][7][8] The law firm of Baker Botts is also headquartered there.[9][10]

As of 2018, NRG Energy occupied the bottom 22 floors of the building.

The Houston Club, on the 49th floor of the building, has dining, entertainment, and meeting facilities.[11]


The building opened in 1971 and was renovated in 1994.[11] The $80 million in major renovations included an updated lobby and plaza, elevator modernization, upgrades to the buildings EMP systems, new lighting, and ADA modifications.[12]

In December 2011 Shell renewed the lease for 804,491 sq ft (74,739.7 m2). The new lease retroactively had the start date of January 1, 2011, and will last for 15 years, ending in 2025.[13]

In March 2012 Hines Interests Limited Partnership announced it was putting the building up for sale.[14]


The 170 ft mast atop the building has carried various television and radio signals since the building's completion. The mast supported 1971 start up channel 26 KVRL (later KDOG, now KRIV) and a mast that simultaneously radiated signals for eight FM stations KYND (then 92.5, now KKBQ on 92.9 MHz), 93.7 KRLY (now KQBT), 95.7 KIKK-FM (now KKHH), 99.1 KODA, 100.3 KILT-FM, 101.1 KLOL, 102.1 KLYX, and 104.1 KRBE. The combiner and antenna was supplied by Electronic Research Inc. One Shell was used until the completion of the then Texas Commerce Tower and Allied Bank Plaza in 1982–1983, creating a skyscraper canyon that causes multipath distortion, and necessitated the move to the Houston antenna farm in Missouri City.


In popular culture[edit]

Introduction to a scene from August 1980 on the former NBC soap opera Another World. Views of the building would be seen more often during the run of spinoff soap opera Texas.
Left, sign on front of building labeling the fictional "World Building", the setting of fictional oil company "World Oil".
Right, same scene introduction, looking up at more of the building.
  • The building was used as the exterior setting of 'World Oil', a fictional Houston-based firm, as part of initial storylines presented on the former NBC soap opera Another World, but much more on its spinoff soap Texas, which was set in Houston.
  • The building stood in for the headquarters of the "Knox Oil Company" in the 1983 film Local Hero.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "One Shell Plaza". CTBUH Skyscraper Database.
  2. ^ One Shell Plaza at Emporis
  3. ^ "One Shell Plaza". SkyscraperPage.
  4. ^ One Shell Plaza at Structurae
  5. ^ Sarnoff, Nancy. "Namesake tenant departing One Shell Plaza". The Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
  6. ^ "Shell Wind Energy offices Archived 2008-12-27 at the Wayback Machine.." Royal Dutch Shell. Retrieved on January 14, 2009.
  7. ^ "Request for a Grant from Shell[permanent dead link]." Royal Dutch Shell. Retrieved on January 14, 2009.
  8. ^ "Privacy Policy Archived 2011-01-29 at the Wayback Machine.." Royal Dutch Shell. Retrieved on January 14, 2009.
  9. ^ "Baker Botts hires corporate partner." Austin Business Journal. Wednesday January 21, 2004. Retrieved on August 25, 2010.
  10. ^ "Houston, Texas Archived 2010-08-31 at the Wayback Machine.." Baker Botts. Retrieved on August 25, 2010. "One Shell Plaza 910 Louisiana Street | Houston | Texas..."
  11. ^ a b "One Shell Plaza." Hines Interests Limited Partnership. Retrieved on January 17, 2009.
  12. ^ TheSquareFoot "910 Louisiana Street." November 15, 2013. November 15, 2013.
  13. ^ Patel, Purva. "Shell renews downtown lease." Houston Chronicle. December 5, 2011. Retrieved on December 5, 2011.
  14. ^ Sarnoff, Nancy. "Major downtown HQ to hit the market." Houston Chronicle. March 27, 2012. Retrieved on March 30, 2012.

External links[edit]