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About Sparrow

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    Spring, TX

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  1. I would think one of the main concerns is reducing the 100-year/500-year flood plain in the northern section of Downtown. They've had quite a few events over just the past 20 years.
  2. My issue with the expansion of 45 north of 610 is adding more capacity here, while local thoroughfares still lack continuity and while other roadways could be improved to take pressure off of the North Freeway. Why has 249 not been made a controlled access freeway all the way from the Beltway to 45? Seems like this would provide a more reasonable alternative for much traffic eventually headed west of 45 further north if folks didn't have to sit through so many stop lights. Maybe even extend 249 eastward to the Hardy Toll Road or even 59/69--give drivers a reasonable alternative to find another route into town. How about completing the missing segments of local thoroughfares such as West Gulf Bank, Richey, Ella, TC Jester, West Road, Fallbrook, Gessner, Greens, and Hollister? If I still have weeds growing in my lawn after giving it water and fertilizer and so much other care maybe my problem isn't my lawn needing more attention, perhaps it is my neighbor's lawn that is overgrown with weeds three feet high. Treat the problem, not the symptoms.
  3. I don't know of any studies, but during the construction time frame one would sure believe taking 610 around the city will sure be faster than venturing anywhere near Downtown. Construction will be a nightmare.
  4. Seriously, 288/69/59 between Elgin and McGowen seems like it'd be a no brainer. How many soccer or baseball fields could you add to that expanse? Add to that why only cap part of 69 south of Midtown? Why not all the way to Almeda? Why not add in capping 69/59 from Hazard to Montrose as well? If others would have to provide the financing TxDOT might as well "plan" to deck park as much as they possibly could.
  5. Holiday / Days / Heaven On Earth Inn (801 Calhoun)

    I've thought it would be rather creative to use taxation to incentivize greater use for underutilized properties such as abandoned buildings and parking lots. Perhaps the tax code can be rewritten so that you pay the same tax per acre as all other acreage in the same district no matter the improved value of the land. If you operate downtown as a parking lot on an entire city block you pay X dollars in tax per year. If you operate downtown as a 100 story skyscraper on an entire city block downtown you still only pay X dollars per year. Determine what X dollars is due based upon the mean property value of the entire district. If the owner of a parking lot or abandoned building is paying the same opportunity tax as a skyscraper the owner of the lot would either be incentivized to increase his property's income with a more appropriate use or sell the land to someone who would be inclined to do so. If the owner of this eyesore wants to pay their fair share of X dollars in taxes to "operate" an abandoned building all the more to them.
  6. Montgomery County study recommends creating a loop road around The Woodlands to combat thru-traffic. It also recommends expanding Sawdust to 8 lanes. Perhaps expediting the connection of Holzwarth and Sawmill over Spring Creek would help reduce the traffic that exits I-45 at Rayford/Sawdust.
  7. Does anyone know if Houston's BRT will be just like light rail except on rubber? (ticketing, low-floor, compartment layout, etc...) If the user experience is the same for the rider, who cares if it's on wheels or rails. With proper bushes and other vegetation alongside you couldn't tell anyway. Drop the L or the B and just call it RT.
  8. The design from the corner entrance of the store to the street intersection is nice. Let's not be too greedy with getting rid of the ease of access parking. Businesses have to provide the quick stop easy-in, easy-out parking option to keep shoppers happy. The Whole Foods on Post Oak has parking in front (in addition to structured) and that doesn't seem to diminish the more urban feel of Blvd Place. The parking lot may have to do with required setback as well--if you can't build your building there because of planning standards, you might as well put parking.
  9. HEB Humble-Spring Store

    Joe V's Smart Shop opens on Wednesday May 3rd. Seems like a great location positioned on three major roadways.
  10. The land on Cypresswood in the far Northeast side of the district would be far better suited as a high school rather than a stadium. The Dekaney land would be better centralized and equipped for a 10,000+ seat football stadium. The amount of traffic coming to Cypresswood--with no major cross streets near the stadium--on game days will be quite the inconvenience to the local neighborhoods. Putting the stadium at the Dekaney land with FM 1960 and I-45 right there would have made much more sense.
  11. Streets that will likely be closed to thru traffic quite often when Houston plays host to a Super Bowl or a parade or 5k or street festival etc. Barricades will be present quite often I would think. Several cross streets, while dividing the one large park into several, would make parking more accessible (and preclude any large parking lot from taking up any park land like it does by the zoo).
  12. New Development on the University of Houston Campus I'd like to think that fear of gentrification by race/ethnicity is not the concern of those wanting to "preserve the character of the neighborhood", but rather the blue collar, working class nature with respect to income. I hope it's not about fear of building new houses that whites or Asians may occupy, but rather its about dissatisfaction with kicking out the poor old guy to be replaced with a rich yuppie. Too many people focus on race rather than income segregation and inequality. Black and white the issue is not--green is the color that shapes our society.
  13. New Development on the University of Houston Campus

    This interactive map from the New York Times published with 2015 data shows the 3rd Ward east of US 59 clearly still has a long, long way to go to be classified as diverse. (That being said, Houston--and Texas--as a whole seems to be head and shoulders above many cities across our nation in diversity. Houston--and Texas--should be proud.)
  14. This appears to be on the land that just had the mid-rise demoed.
  15. What ever happened to Republicans not wanting to create burdensome regulations that stand in the way of creating jobs? Anti-business Republicans? Hmmm. The thing that these rural folks don't understand is that allowing the train to be built will preserve their rural way of life. Who cares if a train passes by the way--trains have been crossing the country since the 1860s--nothing new there. Stronger, more successful urban cities reduce the development drive for accelerating sprawl. More high speed rail connecting big cities reduces the need for ever wider highways across the countryside taking productive farm land. High speed rail means cookie-cutter housing and strip centers won't be visiting a cow pasture near you anytime soon. Standing in the way of high speed rail means you can look forward to selling all of that land that's been in the family for generations. Maybe that's just it, these politicians want Big Sprawl to come to the countryside. That way they can make big bucks selling land for master planned community deals. There's no desire to build a community of 15,000 houses next to a rail line without a station--but put a highway with exits and entrances and suddenly those 15,000 families are welcomed with arms wide open to move on in.