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X.R.

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  1. 100% agree with see this being against the original vision. The change has been much...more than I would have thought after seeing the original outline a year ago. If they basically just remove SOME of the brick from the Shops, downtown will have gotten such a facelift. And walking into the shops will no longer feel like going into a bunker.
  2. Yeah, agree with second point. They need the space to actually do testing. 40k sq feet of green energy startups is a coup to me cause its so far out of my expectations for startups in Houston, I almost can't believe it. We went from thought and opinion pieces in local papers and publications asking "can this even work, it should have been more organic/what about Post Oak?!?" to "we have THE established green incubator opening up a space next to the Ion." Thats an impressive jump.
  3. The more recent "successes" have been moreso due to the State for the areas under the highways and private entities enforcing their rights via the method outlined by @ATH. But you are right, the city does sometimes get aggressive with certain encampments through HPD and their outreach officers either citing trespassing or helping the individuals find the shelter thats right for them. Also, the more the "successes" there are the more the transient people will find their ways into unusual parts of neighborhoods that didn't typically have such people walking around. For example, some of the individuals I got to know by Wheeler/the Ion are now panhandling deep in Montrose, almost near Kirby. So its kind of a cascading issue. The city did the impossible and helped the homeless find either shelter or helped them move on from the area by the courthouse compared to what it was in 2012-2013. If they can do that, I'm sure this development will be fine when the time comes.
  4. I don't really understand the obsession with surface parking lots specifically in this area. I do understand that parking lots are a nice place holder while the owners shop the land or figure out what to develop it with. There are three lots in a small space, you would think the price of the land would mandate a higher level of usage, especially now when there aren't that many cars needing to park for the museums or park. I know COVID is discouraging some types of development, but it should also be discouraging this too.
  5. Are those mockups made out of legos, reminds me of Zoolander. The pool area is exposed on one side? What are they doing, lol.
  6. Not only downtown is dead, but midtown/montrose/galleria bar and restaurant scenes are dead too. I mean Chris Shepard was saying he might have had to close UB Preserve if HEB didn't let them sell their meals at HEB. And Chris kinda rules Montrose. So to me, its not just a downtown thing. The biggest shift when I go around is that there are less people "out" at the bars/restaurants/stores in the core, but more people in the parks (My god, Memorial and Bayou Parks). I think I was worried about work from home too, but the more my clients get comfortable with COVID, the more and more I have seen medium sized businesses and financial places bring people back on a limited basis. Work from home makes sense for Tech and certain other businesses that have established business culture, I'm not sure if it really translates well to anyone else. Even your Exxon's/Shell's/Chevron's who have huge HQ teams involving sectors that could easily be remote (HR/IT/Upper Management/Project Engineers) have been working towards bringing everyone back eventually. We'll see. Most of my restaurant clients, if they made it this far, are OK. Alot of these closings are places that were on the fence before, like Im surprised Saint/Springbok didn't close earlier.
  7. Given the fact that its related to teaching adults looking for tech jobs, and that the article also mentions that Microsoft is separately sponsoring Yates High and Edison middle school for STEM instruction, I think this is probably related to Microsoft and Houston's "Internet of Things" partnership. Would be very cool, and kind of forward thinking of CoH and Turner since the partnership was established in 2018, if they could use the Ion to push Microsoft to sponsor ($$$) more things at the Ion for adults, young adults and teens to create homegrown tech sector. Talking to people with CoH, I don't know if anyone knew what the Internet of Things was going to do outside of some HISD stuff, but maybe the Ion provides them a more solid path forward. I know NYC's and DC's apple stores have a ton of programming for kids and teens to learn video/picture editing, rudimentary logic based programming, math, etc which Houston's flagship store only sometimes does. If they could get that kind of programming going on, with big name sponsorship, I think thing it will have a big impact not only on the surrounding area but for people in the city generally.
  8. Well, it seems like the article has been written about this and it contains some interesting soundbites: https://communityimpact.com/houston/heights-river-oaks-montrose/development/2020/08/18/after-legal-resolution-montrose-management-district-takes-steps-toward-comeback/ Oh? It sounds like they may be able to help with those questions in the other thread about the Montrose pedestrian study and implementation of the study and the suggested bike/walking improvements. "Madden’s letter stated that upon reinstatement, the district will better leverage the economic growth in the neighborhood from upcoming developments that are outpacing city-led improvements to the area’s infrastructure hampered by Houston’s budgetary constraints."
  9. You were right about the demo and rebuilding. I wonder if they saw the success of city centre/baybrook mall and thought that might be a demand for it especially now with Covid. I have multiple friends with kids who make the trek to city centre just to have them play in that outdoor space while they walk around.
  10. One of the lead engineers tweeted this: If Rodney Ellis is involved with the project, based on what him and his team and COH have been able to accomplish in 3rd Ward/Downtown/Midtown/East End/the Bayous, I would bet a lot of money that parts of this project will not only have legs, but a decent timetable for certain walking and biking components. You can now get from one side of downtown to the other, both north and south and east and west on protected lanes, which was a pipe-dream not too long ago. Adding on street bike lanes to Waugh and Hawthorne and expanded sidewalks around those areas? Seems easier by comparison, especially with community buy in.
  11. I was listening to the memorial park people talk on some interview and it seems like the design is more worried about sustaining the weight of the land mass since they are using soil from the park and growing trees on top of it. A comment on the post said something like "this isn't just a rooftop garden" lol. So it seems like they need incredible support, aka all that concrete looking like drain culverts, to ensure the soil stays in place and the trees can grow. The new expansion is more than I could have imagined, the land bridge is some visionary type stuff that as a person born and raise in houston I could only dream of. Looking at those photos, it looks like the Arboretum in some places. So do you just park on the south side of the park and walk over there?
  12. As long as Half-Price books stays in the area, I don't care what they build there. Unless its a cookie-cutter apt like the Montrose at Buffalo Bayou *shudders*.
  13. I very honestly would add the areas around the current rail lines to those two streets. Midtown, just by the buildings that are already there, give a glimpse of what the rail corridors could end up looking like, specifically that area by the Continental Club and a few streets north. All that land around Wheeler (that Rice/Mann don't already own) and south of it, the land south of TMC going to NRG, and the area going southeast of the soccer stadium can finally have development that makes sense and not just random smatterings of...whatever.
  14. Big win. Emailed the council members after meeting, I'm hoping they received enough support post meeting for them to feel comfortable with their votes. Mayor Turner being such a stalwart in defense of the ordinance probably had a huge impact.
  15. While they say its because people are getting sick, and I don't doubt they are and that is terrible (and raises a separate discussion if construction should have been allowed during COVID), the real reason is probably the above: that they "overestimated" demand and because of COVID/stay at home work/layoffs the economics of the project is thrown into whack. So now they might want to slow play it and potentially dial back some because the estimated tolls is lower. I think the damning thing is that "even if congestion increases slightly," because of all the work they've done on the free lanes, traffic will be smooth and they'll have a tollway that is used at a lower rate than their estimation, probably much lower. What a great article, some good insight into how traffic is affecting tollways.
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