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Everything posted by JJxvi

  1. As indicated, the West Loop and Katy Freeway are like night and day. The West Loop is awful. The Katy Freeway was too in the 90s, it was a nightmare. There is traffic on it now at rush hour, but its been decades since I've worried about avoiding it, and I think in the whole history of "the era where we had pocket GPS" I've never once felt the urge to look up how traffic is because I was getting on the Katy Freeway between the Loop and the Beltway (definitely done it on all freeways if I plan to go downtown or through it though, including 10). The problem with the West Loop is that there is generally no other choice of road to take. Someone going north or south in the city has to cross Buffalo Bayou. The West Loop is the only crossing between Shepherd and Chimney Rock, which are 4-5 miles apart. In the 11 miles between the bridges at I45 and Beltway 8 there are only 11 crossings. 3 of those are the freeways mentions, and of the rest, only Shepherd, Voss, and Gessner are actual major N/S options that you can use and get somewhere on.
  2. The other interesting obvious Katy Freeway scar that comes to mind every time I drive by it are the Ivy Club Apartments just east of Gessner north of the freeway. There's these weird apartment buildings fronting the highway with like a big grassy lawn in front of them. And the building have strange gable roofs facing the highway at each end. What you're actually seeing is the only the back side of what used be square shaped buildings with a central courtyard. Those buildings used to extend out into the freeway by roughly the same distance as they are long. The gables are where the wings that extended south on each side of the squares were attached. I also always find interesting that they went with a weird "yard" rather no trees or parking or anything there. I'm guessing that ever since the freeway was built, the owner has had redevelopment rather than spending any more money on it, but it still seems like they would have paved that for parking or something.
  3. You are very mistaken. The Katy Freeway row expansion was not just the railroad ROW that already existed, and even in those areas where both railroad ROW and old katy road ROW existed, the highway ROW expanded even beyond those boundaries. Over 1000 homes and business were subject to eminent domain between beltway 8 and 610, which is the richest area abutting a highway in the city. In Spring Valley between Blalock and Bingle, I think two entire rows of single family homes are gone now. You can still see the blank area near the freeway where the homes used to be in an aerial on like google maps (see the park area where the culdesacs of Teresa Dr and Ben Hur Dr. end), but that land is just the northernmost line of homes. There was another line of homes demolished that would be way out into where the main lanes are now. Where the Katy feeder road is now was actually a residential street with neighborhood houses on the south edge and then the railroad beyond that before you got to the highway. I recommend you open google earth if you have it, turn on the road layer which shows where the modern roads are, and then take the imagery back to 1995 and just look at all of the stuff that freeway and its feeder road blasts through. The impact was very significant The NHHIP, I believe might have more significant total number of impacts, but I dont think it does when you're talking about just sections 1 and 2.
  4. The "racial injustice" or "social justice" component of this is really just a dogwhistle that more effectively gets the attention of some of the current powers that be (especially those far away, like the federal government) than just general "we don't like freeways" on its own would. In sections 1 and 2, the project is happening where it is because the freeway already exists there, they aren't deciding to ram it through because of who lives there. Similar projects have already been completed in the last 30 years on highways that could be considered mostly blue collar white (northwest freeway) and both of the highways that run through the richest, whitest parts of town (west loop and katy freeway). Fighting to kill the entire project seems more counterproductive to me than fighting to fix specific problems.
  5. It definitely doesnt look like its enough for the whole thing, but I bet its more than 10%. It looks like there are a fairly good amount of embankment dirt being built up on the site, just because the reconstruction of Memorial Dr even way beyond where the hills begin look like its several feet lower than the current roadway/original elevation.
  6. There is already decent size mound that has been sitting just north of the construction site (across Memorial Drive and the walking trail) that I think was saved from the reconstruction of the golf course.
  7. The complete impossibility of connecting these two lines with Memorial Park annoys me.
  8. Well, I can only speak for myself, but if that Barnes and Noble hadn't been built I wouldn't have even stepped foot in this shopping center at all for the last ten years. So I guess even if it supposedly did lose some aesthetic appeal, it gained a lot in utility from my perspective...
  9. I will say that this center is one of a handful of historic Houston shopping centers that are gems, so I hope they dont screw it up.
  10. Los Angeles is a much older city. It already had a population of 600,000-1,000,000 in the era where automobiles became ubiquitous, whereas Houston went through that era of its growth in the 1960's and 70s. I suspect that most of the inspiration of New Urbanism (especially that which has an American flavor) and things like main street theme park design, etc is all mostly just trying to replicate LA in 1915 or or 1925 or whatever.
  11. Hopping in an Uber or Lyft from Northwest Mall to your Downtown destination would probably actually shred the tube trip from Kings Cross to Liverpool Street plus the walk to your building in terms of travel time at most times of day.
  12. So transit would end up running down both the North and West boundaries of Memorial Park with no access.
  13. Pretty sure this actually did start as primarily a crusade against "affordable" housing.
  14. This site would require a stop to built on Post Oak Rd to have any access to BRT. It's almost a mile walk (and an uncomfortable one at that) to the NW Transit center and almost 2 miles walk the other direction to the first stop at Uptown Park. You'd likely need to take the bus (assuming a line still exists long term running directly parallel to BRT when all is said and done) to get to the bus.
  15. It's hard for me to imagine land here being worth the $75? or 100?/sf that it would seem like it would surely require for the condo owners to agree to a buyout compared to their market value as condos, especially with the access issues in this area. This land is not really easy access to the west loop or I-10 in any sense, as you would think it would be on first glance.
  16. They likely say that those two fields aren't moving because those two fields are still in the same location on the master plan, one just has its orientation changed.
  17. This exists within our state. In 2009, a new Texas A&M University-San Antonio was founded with eventual plans to reach an enrollement of 25,000+, and San Antonio is also served by the 35,000 student enrollment University of Texas at San Antonio.
  18. Between Tidwell and Parker all of the ROW aquisition is on the opposite side, so none.
  19. The best word for this immediate area going back 50 years is "dump" not "historic" in any sense. It was very 50s-60s era commercial industrial mix with a railroad spur right through the middle of it. The only thing memorable or consistent about the area that felt like they tied together were the two big water tanks, they were very similar to each other...they had a nice giant water tank-ey aesthetic that really tied everything up in a beautiful bow.
  20. Personally I think it looks fine. I dont see what makes it any more or less stylish than like Broadstone Waterworks. I suspect based on that rendering that, like Broadstone, its going to use a significant amount of brick to match the Braun Waterworks shopping center, for example. So Im not sure the idea that they are just plopping down something generic here without any thought is borne out yet. Perhaps you have more information.
  21. 100% substance is boring, which ironically seems to be your problem with this building.
  22. I find it shocking that s3mh thinks a new development in the Heights is a shit sandwich...
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