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Ross

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Ross last won the day on February 19 2012

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  1. As I recall, that was a Prudential Insurance building before AT&T took it.
  2. That's likely to happen to any house in that area, since retail is taking over between Durham, and Shepherd. No one wants to be the last house in the middle of retail.
  3. That really makes sense - leave a $100 million+ asset doing nothing for 20 hours. Sabena did that, and ended up going bankrupt.
  4. Courts are fine where they are. Less traffic and lots of parking. The parking is good for jury duty - my last two times for jury duty have been in the municipal courts. Trying to park downtown would be a pain, with conflicting demands from the County courts.
  5. The last time I was in Baltimore was 1976. I have no real desire or need to go there. People have to live somewhere, and all of you folks keep thinking it's not in Katy. Where would you have them live? Are you going to take large quantities of Inner Loop land by eminent domain and build social housing high rises? That's what I mean, no one proposes any alternatives in any sort of practical detail. Do you have actual evidence that Afton Oaks residents were motivated by racism? Or is it some sort of meme you dreamed up? Very few of the people who live in Katy would be willing to buy a house where I live in the Greater Heights, because they aren't willing to pay $400k for a 2BR 1 bath house when they have a couple of kids and need more room. It's not all about the school district, it's more about lifestyle, separate rooms for all of the kids, a yard where kids can play, at a price that's affordable. My parents bought in Katy in the early 80's because they wanted a new house, and it was not a bad commute to where my Dad worked off of San Felipe. That's a very common desire today as well. Baltimore, Portland, etc are different geographically. The fact that Inner Loop Houston has the same density, population, and other characteristics is irrelevant because Houston is surrounded by miles of empty, flat land, and those other places aren't. They are hemmed in by waterways, mountains, and other natural features. Most of the proposals for transit over the past few years have been for light rail running on existing streets. Which makes sense, because there's no place else for it to run. All of those rail lines would make travel more difficult if the rail doesn't go to your destination. The current light rail lines show that in painful detail. We can get from the greater Heights to where my in laws live without too much interference from the North extension to the Red Line, but getting back home requires a 20 block detour from the old route because the rail blocks all of the turns we used to take. And the times I've seen trains go by over there, they are empty.
  6. The updated Katy carries a huge amount of traffic compared to the old road. I've seen all sorts of claims about induced demand, but no evidence that the new residents in the Katy area wouldn't be there regardless of the freeway. After all, where else are you going to put several hundred thousand new residents if not in the vast open areas on the West side of Houston.Without the Katy Freeway update, congestion would be even worse. I also haven't seen a shred of evidence that all of those new residents would be willing to take the train to their destinations. The general comment I get when I ask about trains is that "they are for other people, and to make my drive easier". "Urban" Houston is nothing like Baltimore, Portland, etc. Where would you run rail in "urban Houston" without also destroying the ability of people to get around the areas near where they live? I am not totally opposed to more transit, including rail, but I've seen nothing that gives a warm fuzzy feeling that it would actually work here. I know there are lots of folks who have no problem with transit making it hard on the people who live between them and their destination, but that has to be considered. In other words, the folks who live in Afton Oaks have to be considered when you want to build rail along Richmond, since it would make getting in and out of their subdivision very difficult.
  7. I've seen a reference to the soil issues somewhere, but can't find it. There's a reference on this page https://facilities.rice.edu/construction/the-first-100-years that says the building suffered from rapid deterioration in the 1990's, and was demolished after New Wiess was built.
  8. Possibly for cities that have similar attributes. Not for Houston. Houston is very different from the so called great cities Speck mentioned. Speck provides no idea on how to make his "dreams" happen. He says Houston needs better transit, but doesn't say what he means by better. He doesn't mention that Houston has multiple downtown equivalents, that make transit harder to implement. There's nothing on how disruptive construction of any sort of rail would be, with similar land taking as the freeway expansion if it's done right. Nothing on where, and how, new residents would live.
  9. The points he makes are stupidly simplistic. He's a man on a mission to reshape Houston, a city he apparently hates, to fit a mold that will never work here. The outer suburbs are going to grow, there's little to be done about that, since the people who buy homes there can't find what they want at the price they are willing to pay, in the central area. Speck implies that if you make the highway suck enough, people will move closer to Downtown. Just where does he think the million plus people who moved to the area recently would live? How many people would be displaced to build Inner Loop housing acceptable to new arrivals?
  10. I was looking for some more information on the Jester Lounge, and came up with some additional info that might be interesting to others. Here's an interview with Judy Clements, who sang there http://digitalprojects.rice.edu/houston-folk-music-archive/judy-clements-oral-history Here's a map project link with locations of some venues https://www.arcgis.com/apps/MapJournal/index.html?appid=9bd32ff712c445e188c62c446b01911c Some songs from Jester performers(about mid page, before the song list) https://aquariumdrunkard.com/2018/02/07/present-of-the-past-houstons-folk-underground-a-medley/ While looking at Google Earth historic aerials I noticed that the West side of Highland Village on the North of Westheimer, next to the railroad tracks, was a skeet shooting range in 1943. The area from Mid Lane West towards what is now 610, was bought up by developers Harvey Houck and Charlesd Swain in the early 70's from a number of sellers, including the Udemi family.
  11. Sid Richardson doesn't meet any ADA regulations, as each of the elevator landings serves two floors with staircases. That makes it unsuitable for modern student housing. It's also not really suited for renovation due to the layout of the rooms and construction techniques. Wiess was demolished because it was falling apart from structural issues related to soil conditions. The RMC isn't a super usable space either, with a weird basement layout to make things worse.
  12. Brutalist buildings seem to require demolition with a ball. I wonder if the amount and thickness of the concrete makes implosion impractical. The old Exxon campus on Dacoma was taken down with a ball and excavators, and some of the concrete looked many feet thick.
  13. That would only cost $80 million at fair market value.
  14. Ross

    1336 N Shepherd Dr

    There are 2 signs up on the cleared site, 1310 and 1324. I haven't seen a sign for 1336.
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