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Everything posted by 'Stonian

  1. Triton, while you may have been paying $100 to fill up your truck in summer of 2008, oil prices were no where near $100/barrel from 2004-2008. Prices mostly exploded after the shale revolution of 2009-2012 began. I happen to be one of the forumers here who care both about the architecture AND economics of developments around the city. I work in single family residential development and we sell a good chunk of our homes to energy executives. I rarely post, but I certainly read others' posts every few days because I'm extremely interested in land planning, economics, development, and architect
  2. Thanks for the heads up on the release of the CBRE report Triton but I'm with Luminare on this one. I used to enjoy swtsig's posts because it was obvious that he/she worked in the CRE industry and was somewhat knowledgable of market conditions. However throughout this tremendous boom of the last couple of years, swtsig has repeatedly been 'negative nancy' more often than not. He comes across as someone too busy looking for signs of a bust to even enjoy the boom. This is but one example earlier this year that he alluded to a major tenant/potential tenant abandoning space in the Samsung/Briarl
  3. On the 12th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: 12 BORED HAIFers 11 HAIFers Sourcing 10 Ex-ca-vators 9 builders renovating 8 tower cranes 7 Ground Floor Retailers 6 taller towers 5 GOLDEN RINGSSSS 4 dozers dozing 3 Sky Houses 2 construction loans and a tower with no pub-lic ren-der-ingggggg
  4. I spoke to the on-site project manager this past Sunday regarding the site work. He stated this blacktop is temporary parking that will be used for overflow parking for Whole Foods' grand opening "for only a couple of months". He explained the holes in the black padding allows rain water to soak into the ground without any additional run-off and can be easily removed. This eliminates the need for temporarily building a small retention pond for run-off.
  5. Thanks, the curved glass corners on the bottom apron will make a big difference..., right now its looking somewhat flat.
  6. I didn't get a picture but they've actually started installing the vertical glass "evening gown" skirt around the bottom 4 floors. It looks to be translucent rather than transparent.
  7. Well remember this is only Midway's proposal so far. The old office buildings will first need to be vacated and demolished so Midway has not beat anybody just yet.
  8. Yes, it has to be replacing the outdated office buildings. I was trying to figure out the orientation of the new rendering. This is exciting news and just further confirms the success of City Centre. I wonder what total development costs would be if the full project was all announced at once back in 2009. I remember it initially being listed as a $500 million project however with the recent and upcoming additions this has to be approaching (or even surpassing) $1 billion.
  9. I'm not a fan of the railings mainly because I think they will partially block the view as you're sitting down in your apartment.., but I do agree they look like thin flimsy perforated sheet metal. Also, still not sure about the paint color they decided for the facade. Withholding final judgement until I see the finished product with the glass skirt around the first few floors and all of the blue plastic removed. Maybe the sun will reflect the balcony railings and give the tower a unique look..., we'll see.
  10. This building will be a little more unique than the others with the 11-12 story connecting "skybridge" cloud713 pointed out. Driving by this site everyday, I've always thought the towers were a bit thin and too close together but now I think they will essentially look more like one building than two.
  11. Yes the rendering shows the view on Capitol looking east towards the GRB. This view will not be as visible since the rendering conveniently removed the smaller Chase Tower garage.
  12. Hey Woodlands guy, I think many of us were commenting on Triton's pics and not necessarily the rendering - granted this rendering shows a thinly illuminated spine and crown that I don't think I've seen before. Personally I was excited about the picture from Chase Tower showing all the lots being transformed from Main all the way to 59. Although there's minimal ground floor retail, that area of downtown will truly be a mix of uses by 2017 with hotels, offices, residential, and even the HSPVA school coming onboard. Check it out - any building in Houston other than a glass box with a flat ro
  13. And I wasn't speaking of COL calculators but rather how it feels to me first-hand. Having moved from Atlanta earlier this year I would call newer apartment complexes in Houston to inquire about pricing and would have extreme sticker shock based on comparable units in Atlanta. I remember looking at my iphone just to make sure I had dialed 713 area code instead of 714 (L.A./Orange County area) by mistake. I think 'most' of the brand new apartment rental prices are comparable in both cities but I have seen some ridiculous prices in high end high rise buildings in Houston that I've yet to s
  14. I really can't disagree with that in terms of Cost of Living. Houston's apartment rents and average home prices are probably a little more expensive right now but the difference is negligible. Office rents are a different story.
  15. It's weird, when I moved to Atlanta back in 2004 rents and home prices where noticeably more expensive than Houston (median home prices of $180K in ATL compared to Houston's $140K - but the collapse of 2008-2012 really hit Atlanta hard with lots of foreclosures decimating median home prices. The two cities have essentially traded places over the last 10 years. Developers started to build homes/apartments again in Atlanta in 2013 but nothing on the level of what Houston is doing. Funny, I used to come back and visit Houston between 2004-2007 and think that the city had some projects going up
  16. I've lived in NYC, DC, and Atlanta so I'm well aware that expensive high rise apartments are nothing new. Sure - One Park Place has little competition and they're able to command these rents "right now" - my point was that these $4,000 - $12,000 monthly rents in Houston are not sustainable, especially once more come online or God forbid, the economy hits a snag. I still own a new'ish 29th floor condo in Atlanta and I'm renting it out for less than some of the newer apartments that have been built there. The mortgage, HOA fees etc. still come in a lot less than some these rents they are charg
  17. I've said this before but Novare has traditionally been a condo developer and I believe their business plan is to convert these rental units into condos once that market recovers. The fact that they are building Skyhouses like crazy and have yet to sell any of those buildings to other REITs further supports my theory. For the past couple of years capital has been flowing towards apartment construction based on fundamentals, however this will change in the coming years. Smart move by companies such as Novare if you ask me - build whatever the capital markets will finance. I clearly expect
  18. Hotel Alessandra will for sure start in the "3rd Quarter this year"..., reliable source.
  19. This rendering of the "evening gown" base is probably the most accurate. If you look closely, you'll see the cladding of the 5th floor balcony is a different material than the glass on the 1st-4th floors. The material is in fact aluminum which could appear white depending on the lighting. If the sun hits this building just right, it may give a shiny metal clad look rather than glass.
  20. I don't think you'll like it. The balconies are such a prominent part of the facade that I fear the building will look like an upright Dynamo Stadium with a little glass here and there.
  21. Also, the varying widths of the cantilevered balconies do give a leaning look to the tower from certain angles. The main structural beams are not leaning however the balconies have slight variances from top to bottom.
  22. Disappointment alert! The balcony rails will not be clad in glass but rather with a material very similar to the Dynamo Stadium aluminum facade. Took pictures of the 5th floor railing being installed today with my iphone but I can't seem to post them. I can't say the renderings were deceptive because upon a second detailed look its been this material all along, I just assumed it was all glass. For me, this changes the whole look of the building.
  23. I've always wondered what it was like back in the early 80's to see downtown get built all at once.., must have been a crazy time! Wish I could find some old construction photos.
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