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EaDo Lou

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    East Downtown
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    running, cycling, photography

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  1. I biked through the park today and noticed that they have begun installing the pre-fabricated sections of the tunnel. I think this is the east tunnel (the one closer to downtown). It is much bigger than I had been envisioning! It looks like each section is pre-fabricated and installed individually. 3 sections installed so far - lots more to go.
  2. Damon Mound in Brazoria County is visible from downtown on a clear day, so presumably downtown would be visible from the top of Damon Mound. Damon Mound is about 39 miles southwest of downtown. It is a limestone outcropping with peak elevation of 146 feet above sea level. I've always found this mound to be interesting since it is so unusual for this part of Texas. https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/damon-mound
  3. https://abc13.com/community-events/houston-botanic-garden-opens-to-the-public-today/6424092/
  4. Moody Center on Rice Campus (west side of the building)?
  5. https://houston.culturemap.com/news/city-life/09-04-20-buffalo-bayou-new-park-trail-fannin-street-mckee-street-austin-street-bikeway/
  6. Work has started on extending the bike trail further east of McKee just south of Buffalo Bayou. Just a short extension to the existing trails at James Bute Park will allow the trails on the south banks of Buffalo Bayou east of HWY 59 to be connected to the rest of the Buffalo Bayou/White Oak Bayou trails.
  7. Good news is that at least from a rainfall perspective, Houston (or nowhere else in the US for that matter) will ever see a rainfall event like Harvey for a long, long time. According to NOAA, the 5-day rainfall totals associated with Harvey was a once in 25,000 year to once in 500,000 year event (a 0.004% to 0.0002% chance of occurring in a given year). Even a double whammy from Laura and Marco would not come anywhere near Harvey's rains. But it certainly is unusual to see two storms in the Gulf at once (if it indeed happens). https://www.climate.gov/news-features/event-tracker/reviewing-hurricane-harveys-catastrophic-rain-and-flooding
  8. There are equations for calculating the forces imposed by moving water (see https://www.bgstructuralengineering.com/BGASCE7/BGASCE7006/BGASCE70604.htm#:~:text=Hydrodynamic loads are those load,the effects of breaking waves.). Large debris in the water, such as trees, vehicles, etc would be even worse. If the fire reduced the strength of the trestles well below their capacity to withstand these forces, I would say it might be possible to at least partially collapse the bridge. But I would say that is an unlikely scenario. But you never know. It will be interesting to see what happens if we do get a flood next week.
  9. Good point. From a load perspective, the loss of a trestle or two is no big deal since the original design loads were significantly higher. However, there is still a requirement that the deflections/vertical displacement in the concrete be kept below a certain maximum value in order to prevent cracks from developing and possibly allowing water to enter the cracks and corrode the internal rebar. Thus, the loss of support could be a problem in that regards. But it appears the supports are still in pretty good shape even after the fire, and if so, I would imagine they could open up the bridge fairly quickly.
  10. I rode past it on my bike and as of 4PM, it was still smoldering and they were still putting water on it. But I agree, the damage is surprisingly minor, at least superficially. Hopefully the follow-up inspection will reveal no significant loss of integrity of the wood. I wonder if there was some kind of fireproofing that had been applied to the wood long ago?
  11. If your destination is downtown, there is a quicker detour to the trail along White Oak Bayou via Stude Park. This does require a short amount of on-street riding, but it is not too bad.
  12. These pictures were taken on 8/12/2020. The demolition crew is taking care not to let any of the building remnants to fall into the bayou - notice the small salvage barge.
  13. The simplistic aesthetic design is likely the result of the limited budget rather than any engineering constraints. Civil engineers and architects can do almost anything given enough money.
  14. Demolition is almost complete. Only the portion of the building right at the edge of the bayou is still standing. This will have to be done carefully in order to prevent pieces from falling into the bayou.
  15. Eastern Glades was open to the public today. It was kind of empty of people because it was raining, but I would imagine this will attract quite a crowd when the weather starts getting cooler. Very nice addition to Memorial Park.
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