About Michael Gaertner, Galveston Architect

I am a registered architect and a graduate of Texas A&M University who moved to Galveston in 1980 with the goal of spending a few years working on historic buildings in the Strand area.  I’m still here.  Some people say that once you get sand between your toes you are inextricably linked to the Island – you either can’t leave, or if you do you are drawn back.

I’ve stayed because I feel I have been able to make a difference.  Revitalizing the Strand and Downtown areas created jobs, put dilapidated buildings back into service and preserved some pretty fantastic architecture for future generations.

Now I’m interested in revitalizing other neighborhoods in Galveston.  In the aftermath of Ike, we have been presented with opportunities to transform other commercial and residential areas. I’m not the only one.

The momentum is building on the Island. House by house, street by street, neighborhoods are transforming from trodden down worn out shells to lively, pedestrian friendly, and charming places to live and work.  This despite those powerful people in Galveston who are fighting this change.  They do not want investment in neighborhoods, they want to make the planning and zoning requirements so cumbersome and unpredictable that no one will even try to improve property here.

I, on the other hand, am for change, I am for transforming Galveston into the picturesque and idyllic Island that it should be. I welcome those who want to make Galveston their home, find a job and raise their family here. Come on to Galveston, “let’s fix this place up!”


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