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About Sparrow

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    Spring, TX

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  1. If building a garage on one property means getting rid of a parking lot or two on others, I can get behind it. Frankly, I almost wish the next Downtown initiative would be just that--build about a dozen large parking garages Downtown to reduce the "it's too expensive to park Downtown" barrier. If the empty lots keep making heaps of money by being a surface parking lot, where's the incentive to improve the land?
  2. Sparrow

    Hardy Yards Development

    How long is the freeway construction project around Downtown supposed to take? Considering this property will be directly next to that several years long construction project, the fact that anything is being built at this time is rather amazing. A suburban style apartment complex won't last very long--look at the Buffalo Heights property on Washington. Those apartments weren't very old before beginning the process of upgrading to a higher use.
  3. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you're riding the rail you pay before you board. If you're riding a bus everyone has to pay as they board. Why not increase travel speed by creating a system whereby bus riders pay before boarding? Make the riding experience/procedure as consistent as possible no matter what type of vehicle is doing the transport. Create PPPs to create more density at park-and-ride locations. Instead of expansive parking lots (for the most part), build large parking garages with ground floor retail and hotels and retail above. Study the plausibility of making Main Street thru Downtown/Midtown a transit only street (i.e. no more car traffic). Buses and light rail only. Have all P&R buses traveling into Downtown travel on Main--it's very centralized no matter which side of Downtown is your final destination.
  4. What would the length of the new park loop around Downtown be, about 5 miles or so? I have to tell you, I'm not a jogger, but the prospects of being able to take a 5 mile jog encircling Downtown Houston makes me want to start. The views from so many vantage points would be absolutely amazing!
  5. Will the multiple smaller caps in Midtown have an effect on driver visibility? I'd hypothesize that going from darkness to blinding sun several times in quick succession may cause some degree of visual challenge that may result in an elevated accident risk, especially when the sun is at a certain angle. Why not just have a single cap for Midtown instead of three caps and four independent bridges? A single transition zone would provide more safety for drivers and a single cap would provide even more recreational space.
  6. Transit streets and "type A" street changes to Chapter 42 amendments went in place in 2009 that should, over time, result in positive results. You can't forcibly change that which already exists, but future development--which no doubt will be forthcoming en masse once the transit line is up and running--will change the streetscape in a pedestrian friendly way. All of that surface parking on Post Oak Blvd should be looked upon as a blank canvas patiently awaiting an artist's brush strokes.
  7. I couldn't seem to find a post for this one, but it's on the planning agenda for 08/30/2018 requesting a set-back variance of 5'. Montrose Garden. NEC Montrose and West Clay. 20 stories. 9 floors of residential above 9 floors of parking. Two floors of retail with one level of underground parking for the retail. 2019 start date listed. Owners: Supo Corporation, 1209 Montrose Blvd. Sorry if this one is already around here somewhere.
  8. Sparrow

    Downtown Apartment Market

    Wouldn't it be great to create Lake Barker and Lake Addicks. We would end up having a much more controlled Buffalo Bayou much along the lines of what Austin has with it's river. Imagine how much more could be done if you didn't have to worry about flooding. Our reservoirs are actually larger in land area than Lake Travis (26k vs 19k), but only hold about a third as much water (~400,000 acre feet vs ~1.1M acre feet). We'd be much more prepared for the next Harvey. Sure we don't have the topography that accompanies Lake Travis, but who cares. Get digging.
  9. Sparrow

    Hardy Yards Development

    Request was deferred. They want more info on the Fulton Street bridge as well as elevation drawings.
  10. Sparrow

    Shell Station Near the Corner of N Durham and N Loop West

    Perhaps the new "Shell Checkout" they are referring to is this new concept store?
  11. Sparrow

    High Speed Rail / Texas Triangle

    Whoa, whoa, whoa y'all. Move Amtrak to the NW Mall site?? No. Y'all are missing the easy solution that is beneficial to many folks at the least possible cost. Move the Amtrak station a few hundred yards east to the Post HTX site. It'd be great for Post HTX because they'd charge Amtrak rent, they'd have more customers are their shops and restaurants, and they'd have a train station at their development so surely they could increase retail rents. It'd be great for Amtrak because, hey, they'd have bathrooms now... They also wouldn't have to spend very much to move the station--just make a new waiting area in Post HTX. If they own the land the current station is on perhaps they could even sell that. Let someone buy it to make a parking garage. The thing is, there already will be transit buses going from the new NW Mall high speed rail station to Downtown via the HOV lane. It's quick. It's easy. It's already a sunk cost--NW transit center/NW Mall HSR station to Downtown. So what if Amtrak customers have to hop on a bus for a 10 minute drive--if you're taking Amtrak already anyway, what's 10 more minutes? And of course they're bound to be the nice park-and-ride buses anyway. Spend a little extra to make a pedestrian connection to the UHD light rail station. Put some moving sidewalks on it too. Maybe even get the Post HTX folks to chip in for the walkway that will surely be to their benefit. Suddenly Post HTX is a multimodal transit center--Amtrak, park-and-ride, light rail, and high speed rail connections all at one place. Perhaps the folks at Texas Central could even do a little PR magic and have a Post HTX High Speed Rail station (****that you happen to have to take a 10 minute bus ride first). Get enough interest after a while, if the economics make sense, just put in a people mover like AirTrain to the NW Mall station.
  12. Don't put this in Kingwood--build it at the KBR site.
  13. Sparrow

    High Speed Rail / Texas Triangle

    For all of the why-not-downtown folks, I'd offer encouragement in that slight angle the track takes into the NW Mall station. Extrapolate that out and guess where you end up--north Downtown. If the HSR is met with a high degree of success, perhaps TCP is already setting up the possibility of extending to a second Houston station located Downtown. (You might also want to buy one of Mr. Musk's Boring hats to help the cause).
  14. Sparrow

    Amazon HQ2

    Anyone here think Blue Origin would have any impact upon Mr. Bezos' decision? They already have a footprint in Texas. Perhaps he would want to be in the same general region as his multi-billion dollar pet project? Maybe he would like to be close to the NASA engineers and Ellington Spaceport? Don't forget Texas' friendly taxes should be a big plus for any proposal in the state versus many other locations. As Amazon's employees age they will likely be trending more toward a single-family-home-good-schools-for-the-kids sort of way of life (think The Woodlands). Don't discount a suburban location--the RFP itself says "urban or suburban locations." Aside from transit, Springwoods Village meets more criteria than most--and don't discount the logistics and time to operations aspects of the RFP. Exxon just built a $3B+ campus, CityPlace is going up, and multiple other projects have been facilitated. LEED all around up there. I'm not sure the whole hurricane argument holds water. If anything, one could argue a location didn't flood during Harvey, so it's actually a reassurance. For that matter, look how quickly as a city Houston got back up on its feet--we are resilient. Seattle is a gateway to Asia. There is no more logical connection to Latin America than right here in Houston.
  15. Sparrow

    Flooding in Downtown from Hurricane Harvey

    With all of this sediment being deposited on the banks, would one tend to think that the channels have been made deeper and wider? Will the 100-year flood plain be reduced due to increased capacity? Or has as much, or more, sediment been deposited downstream within the channel reducing the velocity at which water will make it's way to the Gulf?