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Everything posted by largeTEXAS

  1. Thank you, Urbannizer, for posting! They've been working on this project for many, many years and it sounds like it's close to actually happening. We'll see!
  2. It's serious. The developer owns the block(s) to the south where Continental Club, etc are located. He's a big fan of Austin and wanted to bring a lot of that feel to Houston. I'm not crazy about street abandonment, but this looks like a decent project..
  3. I'm shocked/ elated/ skeptical about the potential of one of these scenarios happening. It almost seems like Houston us waking up to some planning! Imagine downtown seamlessly merging with Midtown, Montrose, and even, the East End!
  4. Agree about Dallas St. I'm glad the task force at least chose the right street, though; now I hope the incentives actually help lure tenants. It did with Tipping Point, so we'll see. EaDo should be a bar/restaurant/entertainment district with design and furniture shops mixed in, I think. The warehouses are perfect for that. I could see it feeling a lot like early 2000's Deep Ellum or the late 90's/early 2000's Meatpacking District. It's gritty, but in a good way for those uses. Mid-/high rise residential will probably follow.
  5. I'm curious how this will compete with the GRB. Aren't the depicted events such as OTC and FanZone currently held in the GRB? And, for the SuperBowl, it seems the focus might shift from downtown and Discovery Green to the Astrodome if major events such as FanZone are relocated to the Astrodome. Hope I'm wrong, but just seems odd that we'd be expanding the GRB, adding hotels and retail around it, then shift some of its biggest events to another location.
  6. The current Glassell building will be torn down and in its place will be a new courtyard for the new building which will be built in the current parking lot to the north and east of the current building. The new Glassell building's design currently has a sloped green roof that connects to the sculpture garden. That could all change with cost, but it's pretty freakin' awesome looking.
  7. There will be multiple buildings, one of which will be on top of the existing parking garage. Steven Holl is not the architect of that building. The architect should be announced soon...hint, grocery store. Holl's buildings will be on the north side of Bissonnet/Binz, replacing the surface lot and the current Glassell building. I can just say that these buildings will be breathtaking.
  8. Steven Holl did a presentation to the staff a couple of months ago and showed a bunch of (amazing) renderings for the new contemporary building, the new Glassell, new underground walkways and performance spaces, and new plazas. We should see more refined images soon, as well as the announcement of a new building on top of the existing museum parking garage.
  9. Sure, the Pickard Chilton designs are nice-ish, but, in my opinion, Midland's project is much more exciting. I like the design of the tower, but the public spaces (most of them) are where the project is impressive. The green roof that emerges from ground level to cover the first floor street level "retail," the plaza and water feature, and the connection (of much of it) to the street are wonderful. The vertical mix of uses is innovative for this part of the world. The openness of the ground floor(s) looks inviting. I'm not so sure about the sunken ground floor, though - I never think sunken first floors work. The "X" facade design is cool. Reminds me of the Hearst Tower in NYC, which is one of my favs. I think Pickard Chilton is fine and his buildings going up in Houston are nice. But, they're boring and predictable. They're conservative and don't add anything to the street level (see BG Place - horrible). I expect Texas oil executives in 2013 to choose boring architecture. Pickard Chilton and Gensler are probably the best of the predictable corporate design firms. But, when a city like Midland, who's identity is oil, steps it up over Houston in architecture, it makes me question whether it is the oil companies that are so conservative and boring or if it's just Houston. I'm sad no company/developer in Houston has, in one of the richest periods in its history, chosen to create something groundbreaking architecturally. The city that used to be known for thinking out of the box is now so stale design-wise. There are some small exceptions. But, if in boom time, design in Houston is this so-so, will it ever see large-scale, design-forward, exciting architecture again? We should expect more from our city and our development community (see Marvy Finger, Jonathan Farb, Hines, Hanover, Trammel Crow, Alliance, Gables, Linbeck, Frank Liu, Greenberg,... even Wulfe, Midway, and PMRG that are doing decent-ish work).
  10. I agree that this is probably the nicest tower going up in Texas right now. Much better design than anything in Houston. Sad to see that even in boom time Houston, designs are so conservative. And, gosh, if Midland can do it, you'd think Houston could step it up! Sounds like it's now 58 stories.
  11. P.S. From what I hear, the Westheimer Montrose site is going to be fairly dense mixed use. Maybe 2 stories of retail overlooking a decent-size plaza. Buildings might be 12+ stories (possibly up to 20+).
  12. Yes, there will be access to the tunnels. From what I hear, the entrance to the tunnels will be very public and accessible from the street (almost).
  13. Downtown. As many have said, it's all about the infrastructure. Uptown can hardly handle the current density there. In downtown the block grid, transit streets, freeways, and light rail are all designed to support density. Uptown was never designed for the amount of density it is seeing.
  14. Haha, good point! Lake Houston is actually pretty cool. It just creeps me out that we're allowed to swim, boat, pee in our city's municipal water source. I know it's filtered, but still...
  15. Nice; reminds me a little of OMA's winning proposal for a mixed use project in downtown Santa Monica (images below):
  16. I'm going back on what I said a little. The corner of Westheimer and Post Oak is a prime location for something spectacular. Dillards, the shopping center on NE corner, that part of the Galleria, and the old Sakowitz property and shopping center will all need to be redeveloped in the next 5-10 years. If Houston ever figures out a way to build transit along/under/above Westheimer and the Post Oak BRT/LRT is built well, that intersection and the surrounding properties could develop into something very cool. Not Times Square, but maybe something like Singapore's Orchard Street, one of the many areas in Hong Kong like Hennessy Rd near Paterson, or maybe parts of Florida St in Buenos Aires.
  17. Notice not one person in the Victory Park image. There is no way Victory Park is at all comparable to Times Square. Times Square is the result of one of the busiest central subway hubs in the city, one of the busiest east-west streets in Manhattan - 42nd Street, one of the busiest north-south streets in Manhattan - Broadway. All the theaters, shops, corporate headquarters, hotels, etc are a result of traffic and exposure. Victory Park is a vanity project that's almost completely cut off from the rest of the city. It will never be Times Square. That said, if Houston were to ever build a central hub for transit that also intersected two of the busiest streets in the city, a successful mixed use "square" might work around it. I think Houston's one opportunity is the Sears/Metro/Fiesta site where the proposed University line will intersect the Red line. It's ripe for dense development and, although Richmond and Fannin are no Broadway and 42nd St, and the Red and University lines will never be the NYC subway, they are main thoroughfares in that part of town and probably will be the busiest transit lines. The site also gets a lot of exposure from 59. Hey, and it's seedy enough over there to remind some of the old Times Square, haha!
  18. If Houston were to have a giant, 1-acre swimming hole/beach/pool, where should it be?
  19. I sold my car in 2009. I ride my bike most places, but take the bus or borrow a car when I need to.
  20. Apparently, according to a couple of friends that work for the Nasher and DMA, this building's reflective glass has become quite a nuisance. The Nasher has begun moving a few site specific sculptures because, apparently, the glare coming from the building is so intense, it is starting to damage the art and kill some of the plants. I haven't been in some time, but, from what I hear, the sculpture garden at the Nasher has become quite unbearable during certain times of the day. If this is indeed the case, it's sad because the Nasher's garden is one of my favorite things in Dallas, maybe Texas.
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