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Everything posted by strickn

  1. From Chron, “In all, the house will take about 220 hours of concrete printing. The remainder of the work is expected to be finished by mid 2023.“
  2. The Karlin Railyard redevelopment proposal was floated in January 2020… is it that one again? https://austin.towers.net/two-towers-at-the-railyard-could-redefine-austins-skyline-twice/ was hoped to be integrated with a podium that would expand the Convention Center itself. That would be excellent design work.
  3. And for some lady who riled up the town when the archive of government documents were being removed back to Houston on schedule. Maybe the pool deck closet in Palm Beach was likewise getting set to become Great America’s new capital! That would be quite the “come and take it” flag / swimming towel
  4. The Fish and Wildlife Service public responsibilities are always by default scoped to the USA, I'd say🙃 Even those numbers aren’t in context until you know the total estimated US population of birds, and the average amount that their population ordinarily decreases annually. If a lot of the million deaths are niche specialists then that is also a bigger deal than wrens, starlings or sparrows. And wind turbines (North Sea or otherwise) for one thing are not killing house sparrows. We can eliminate car crashes into trees by putting guardrails on every road, too, but we don't, for obvious reasons. So making wind farms Hurricane-Alleyproofed and more sufficiently Central Flyway adapted is an important and interesting challenge which engineers can certainly meet; yet each safety improvement is likewise going to increase the cost per kWh of these technologies. It will make them marginally less practical compared to authorizing some other power plant: past some breakpoint, it's a better decision to invest elsewhere. Maybe it will still make sense here when all is said and done.
  5. Wish our street artists were invited to color some of these panels. Houston is colorful. The Menil has been cited as a touchstone for these designers but this feels overdressed where the Menil feels relaxed. This is a tasteful linen seersucker suit where none was required. Seems like it breeds not community-centric, but institutional, activity
  6. overall, they may have built out the site, now -- until a future decision is made to eventually replace some of their surface parking with a new parking garage.
  7. I guess that it's not going to line the River Falls end of the property if it's adding a triangular parking lot (per the project filing). That will probably be added at the opposite grassy end. If it's a concrete tilt-wall building with five equal floor shells, then the building itself will have a footprint of about 135000/5 or 27,000 square feet. I wonder what that will leave available for the site's stormwater runoff detention from ALL that impermeable cover. Seems like they have to store the runoff somewhere.
  8. Good point. Needs to be replaced with another safe blue glass urban midrise post-architectural post-urban investment product. Ferris Bueller's teacher: "Hines? Hines? Hines?"
  9. If your concept is that a public building can perfectly well be a cartoon of a private single-family home if the postmodern style calls for it, then to start with, people need something else from this at the level of artistic license: just asserting it doesn't absolve the artist from picking a more sensible style in the first place. Michael Graves already gave Allen Parkway another cartoon house job in the form of a Federal Reserve sub-branch, and that choice poorly suited both the utility and the dignity of a public-sector institution. This jamatkhana has utility and dignity but the classic criticism of postwar Houston urbanism is that it is too disjointed and hermetically sealed from its surroundings. If your building is open air but treats everything offsite as a blank slate both artistically and urbanistically, it is still disjointed.
  10. Just like Holl's and Lake Flato's recent local arts buildings, or this Dallas palace under construction right now, https://www.archdaily.com/981862/morphosis-designed-new-arts-campus-breaks-ground-in-texas can't help noticing that the architecture has nothing to say to the rest of the city that is its home. How different is this Aga Khan cool textured beauty from say the reserved geometry of the Tampa Museum of Art (2010)? https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tampa_Museum_of_Art Like them, these design renderings could really be clipped from magazine articles about recent climate-minded modernism in Tampa, Atlanta, Phoenix, San Diego, or Tehran just as easily as Houston -- probably more easily. Academic or commercial architects are both equally out of step with Houston's distinctive rhythm and texture.
  11. It is said the building will have the highest pool not only in Texas, but the entire Western Hemisphere. https://atxtoday.6amcity.com/behind-design-sixth-guadalupe-austin-tallest-tower/ I have not read your link because it redirected back to this thread for me, but the 875' top floor of Comcast Center in Philadelphia (974') is the hotel spa, and its indoor pool is higher than this entire Austin building plans to be. I'd be surprised if there isn't an even higher one in Toronto, though probably not an outdoor one either. Maybe Austin will still say it is the highest pool *deck,* but I'd be surprised if there isn't a higher one already in Monterrey, Panama City Panama, etc., that was easily overlooked [sic] by the people who aim to boast in these sorts of pointless things.
  12. Just leaving this (vertical office tower addition) here... https://www.historicaugusta.org/properties/2016-the-penthouse-at-the-lamar-building-753-broad-street/
  13. The wicker basketweave skyscraper was stale in the 1960s. Now, wrap it around a more random design to cross Flintstones with Jetsons and voila... something that will be stale for the 2020s.
  14. I vote that we have a local artist paint a friendly Quaker on the silos and we name this East End neighborhood River Oats.
  15. Enjoyed your post, thank you. Do you think Austin’s highway and housing limitations have also made greater San Antonio more favorably positioned for broad middle class economic growth this decade in what had traditionally been a military/tourism/eds and meds kind of family town? Do you think South Florida’s and Sarasota-Ft Myers’ price booms have made the Orlando-Tampa corridor a similar middle class 2020s hub? I could see them beating Houston because they’re more coastal than Houston and a lot of Easterners want to remain in the east.
  16. Dominion Post Oak's classical villa penthouse was a far cry from 1661's. Thanks for the fine update. Do you think there might be any way to increase the colonnade's height (not necessary to increase the interior ceiling height) by 15' or so, masking more of the black box's vertical faces, so that it doesn't look undignifiedly short underneath the visual mass of the tophat?
  17. Presenting the Houston Slimes and their animatronic mascot Young Marvin Zindler
  18. Well, after twenty lost seasons, we should at least hang up the Texans moniker, and with it our unsuccessful attempt to grab some loyalty from statewide NFL fans…
  19. Kind of a waste of time trying to make your point this way, since you clearly knew enough to know that that’s not the actual upshot of the situation https://www.dmagazine.com/frontburner/2022/01/four-seasons-to-step-away-from-las-colinas-resort/
  20. Essentially the beef is that it’s a ped tunnel with better daylight but it robs the urban street of people’s presence no less than tunnels would. However, the eye doctor doesn’t want people getting run over between the operating room and their hotel room, so it is part of the program for the hotel to be in the project (as a convenient place for patients to stay, not only the general public) that they not have to be part of the street life every time they move between buildings.
  21. Hi N De Sky, Is Superman going to be the operator in the cab of that crane?
  22. I forgive you and yes, I also agree that you went needlessly below the belt :P A self-sustaining neighborhood is not something I was trying to rant about. I simply take it to mean a neighborhood that is able to repair its building stock… — unlike a neighborhood that is losing investment via failure of its products and services; or through redlining policies that deny mortgage investment; or through a shortage of new resident replacement as neighbors age — …and also to mean a neighborhood that doesn’t export its density. For a concrete example: services provided to West U or to River Oaks homeowners, from lawn care to law and accounting, have been provided by both upper-middle-class young professionals and by the working poor who are housed in other neighborhoods; the desirable character will stop coexisting with a desirable range of local service offerings unless it either uses space within Fourth Ward, the Montrose and the Heights, and finally places like Gulfton, Denver Harbor, Eastwood and Magnolia Park, to satisfy its housing needs, or tears down parts of River Oaks and West U to invest in denser building stock. — Because it was a premise of this thread that the character of the self-sustaining neighborhood would not significantly be erased, I take that as given, and I am fine with local trade, except that to overly rely on paying other neighborhoods can include needing them to absorb things our neighborhood regards as threats to its self-sustenance. If that has to go somewhere nearby, then we cannot be a bunch of self-sustaining neighborhoods, since in this model of neighborhood investment processes, the buck is still stopping somewhere that needs to keep erasing its own sustained character qualities. It might still be a good economic model for a tournament but not for families’ place to live. Within these options, then, a neighborhood can try to attract surplus investment for as long as possible through economic success — in which case almost every building will eventually be replaced with greater density due to increasing land value — inevitably changing its character. Or the neighborhood can attempt to resist any runaway success, and in that case investment will either begin to dwindle compared to nearby neighborhoods, or it will still grow more desirable and some other neighborhoods will have to take up its slack. The successful 19th and 20th century examples you cite may have developed that way, and still be fine-grained residential/commercial neighborhoods at this time, but what paths will allow them to keep self-sustaining? Thanks for thinking about it publicly together. My essay was a point of departure to explore what that question is really asking, if you will. What actual issues are forming the levels (or limits) that in fact need to be understood before we can do something? It’s pointless to do something if we don’t know that it levels out the desired path and makes it easier to remain on such a path. Have the lessons of those 19th and 20th century successes shown us anything lasting — or mostly kicked the can down the road? Or were they offroad? That is a form of clarifying one’s understanding which my comment saw as its goal, but not a form of ranting or of salesmanship — not an essay to tell the public what idea they should now be sold on. I apologize for doing a poor job of communicating that and for making it a frustrating use of time. I do know Houston’s worth the effort to constructively converse about this, so that non-mental action is as effective as possible. To whatever extent I HAIF in the future I’ll try to do better.
  23. Once an area starts being proven up for commercial purposes, it's hard to stop the flipping of passive-income-producing residential properties to directly-income-producing business. The burn rate of viability for that ecosystem is higher but the risk/reward metabolism is higher too. So it's not just Triton who is conflating them [edit: that is, linking neighborhood 'character' redefinition to housing stock stability and tenancy] -- the free market also conflates the signals that link those processes. We don't love urban growth boundaries, but NAFTA legislation made Texas towns and smaller counties struggle to compete against Mexican labor while a few of the richest Texas cities have been able to place more economic bets and get more of them to pay off. Is that to those cities' credit? Was it their competitiveness and resilience? Or is it a steep new fiscal slope on the playing field that has funneled labor and jobs inside the metropolitan areas, just as a costly change to windstorm laws (or a hard urban growth boundary) would start to artificially funnel them away from us regardless of our fundamental business competitiveness? So in my view y'all are not talking past each other at all, because Texasota too talks about pre-WWII neighbors and blended "missing middle" housing. They then had a range of both de jure and de facto limitations on participation in the free market for real estate, limitations which mostly don't socially control our viral CRE [edit: commercial real estate and how it's financed, permitted, developed and marketed to investment managers and investors, as well as to architects] now. You each are referencing states where the market plays second fiddle to social expectations of what a city should be like. In other words, y'all agree that when the market was held in check, neighborhoods could be self-sustaining. The fact that some of those social checks were predatory and discriminatory doesn't negate the general point: outside, nonmarket checks could and did override the bidding and sale that was internal to the market forces. Compared to the participants in those prewar neighborhoods, we have relatively more red tape but less cultural legitimacy for boxing in the market forces in favor of the vernacular these days. Those we do have, we often ask to play second fiddle to the price dynamics that are given us by the market. For instance, pity even the poor preacher who shares a meal with the homeless; he's not respecting them but enabling them to avoid bettering their lot (by getting off the street and into the housing market). The example is not the point; I only illustrate my impression that Houstonians have arrived at mainstream endorsement for the theory that unfettered market math will slice up reasonable shares of a steadily expanding risk/reward pie when we allow that pie reasonable authority to stretch most other social contracts, preferences, priorities, so that it might benefit everyone as long as possible. The free market can also efficiently slice up a pie that is not changing in size. Unfortunately neither of those theoretical states exists. When factors are instead speeding up or slowing down, and additionally both affect and depend on nonmarket externalities, the price information doesn't efficiently price in those feedback loops (and therefore people's real decisionmaking priorities), which is part of why the discipline of economics has been taking such a 'psychological turn' in the past couple of generations -- to try to stop their hypotheses from generating policies that produce real-world nonsense. The bottom line is this: the question is whether self-sustaining neighborhoods are actually possible in a free market. Has it been shown that they practically exist in an unchecked market anywhere outside of the utopian test tubes of indefinite growth on the one hand and an indefinite local steady-state balance on the other? If that's where the free market allows self-sustaining neighborhood processes to continue, then that's a big oops for a city of pragmatic can-do people. If we're hitching our wagon to a longterm misconception it's not good news for Houston. thanks for reading and considering!
  24. drcross.com can put the crosseye of Sauron atop that one *rimshot* because like the song says, there's no business like strabismus business *rimshot with cymbal*
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