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Geoff8201 last won the day on July 16 2013

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About Geoff8201

  • Birthday 06/13/1982

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    Houston, TX

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  1. Thanks for the info! Does the Royalton have no basement so the standpipe runs under the slab of the first floor (which I presume sits on deep footings) off the fire pump? If so, I wonder why the builder elected to run the pipe under the floor and not through the ceiling of the first level? Last time I was in this building was 2005 so it’s been a while, I thought they did have a basement for mechanical. The break in that standpipe should have triggered the fire pump to turn on, along with flow switches indicating to the front desk and fire department water flow and a potential fire. The pump run would have increased the pressure under the floor even more. This should have occurred just prior or simultaneously to the break in the floor and the water flooding. I would assume while their wet pipe fire suppression system is crippled, that their alarm system would be working fine. Typically a building would implement a fire watch consisting of multiple people walking the building on shifts with 24/7 coverage. This is critical during an alarm outage. The loss of sprinklers and fire hose connections do not seem like reason enough to evacuate the entire building for a month or more, so what’s missing? Sprinklers in a condo with privately owned units are required in common area only. Lease properties are different where they do have to be in each unit.
  2. It’s a question whether the broken pipe caused the structural issues or the structural issues caused the broken pipe. I had a colleague work here during construction back in 2002 time frame (we are stationary engineers, whom work in high rise buildings performing & supervising maintenance). He had told me during construction a large water pipe burst and flooded down to the lowest floor, but the building was still being built and no finishes we’re even close to going in. I recall he said they used schedule 40 pvc pipe for the water risers. Interesting it happened again with much more dire effects. Again which caused which. Structural failures for a 20 year old building are very alarming.
  3. I heard today that they intend to transplant the trees within the site, or at least attempt it. That’s why the dirt lines were placed, something about it and the trees root system… makes it easier somehow to transplant them? I’m not sure how it works, I’m no arborist. I also heard the residential tower will end up being 12-14 floors of occupancy… but on top of a multilevel parking garage. Much shorter than the 37 floors originally proposed but this was expected. I found the following on Emporis listing the first building as 17 floors, which makes sense with the 12-14 floors on top of several levels of parking garage. https://www.emporis.com/buildings/1400038/the-ro-tower-i-houston-tx-usa We will likely see a 2023 start to the construction, but the site will still be divided into 8 parcels which means we should still see offices, a hotel and lots of retail in multiple phases. Edit: The Emporis site lists the 17-floor building use as commercial office. So some clarification is lost as I thought they were referring to the residential tower. We shall see.
  4. I saw the same thing. Took some photos but until I see heavy equipment in droves and a crane foundation getting built I’ll hold my excitement. Also in curious searching I found 1. Spear Street Capital is no longer on board as the have listed the RO as a sold asset (https://spearstreetcapital.com/portfolio/sold/) and 2. Transwestern still has listings for leasable space at the RO. These listings have been there for a while. (https://transwestern.com/property/the-ro-3120-buffalo-speedway). (attached photo was taken on July 13th)
  5. This discussion on boundaries got covered on the previous pages of this thread. The RO doesn’t fall within the boundaries of River Oaks, Upper Kirby or Greenway Plaza. Google any one of those with “Boundary Map” and you will see the borders. Some maps are more accurate and detailed then others. Take Realtor provided boundary maps with a grain of salt. With the boundary of River Oaks being a block away, and the name “The RO” not being used elsewhere it’s no surprise they used it. Maybe the initials RO don’t actually even stand for River Oaks? 🤔 Centerpoint has been doing work along W. Alabama replacing poles and aging equipment. Sanitary Sewer updates have taken place along Buffalo Spdwy and W. Alabama is supposed to get updated in the coming years on the Upper Kirby (Buffalo to Shepherd) and COH (Buffalo to Weslayan) sides. Both plans would replace storm sewers, replace the streets, add sidewalks and add bike lanes. As for the RO, last I heard they were looking for more Capital. Bears the question if Spear Street is still on board. I’m just hoping in the short term, they fix this leaking valve that has been pouring water since the freeze last year. That’s it. That’s all I know for now.
  6. Heard through the grapevine not to expect anything happening here all through 2021. A big scale back may happen cutting the building heights in half, or potentially combining their functions and cutting the number of buildings down. But in the age of Covid, for a giant site that was going to house restaurants, a hotel and an office building, is anyone surprised. I personally hope the wait and see method pays off, and post covid the demand for everything comes roaring back.
  7. Correction, the groundwater cleanup online meeting I was referring to is for 3509 Texas Street. The digging goes and is progressing slowly. I’ll post a photo from atop the Lamar Tower when it looks more progressed. Feel like I’ve posted enough pics of an empty lot for now. Highrises’s photos nailed it.
  8. So there is some activity, but I believe it has to do with groundwater cleanup.... They are digging towards the south end of the property. A notice went out to residents nearby indicating a Microsoft Teams meeting in the near future concerning groundwater contamination.
  9. For a project that was originally “Coming in 2019” and hasn’t even shown signs of breaking ground now at the end of 2020, no it doesn’t look good. But.... it is 2020, which has not been the best year for anyone. It’s disappointing to hear about the office listings being pulled and the trailers being used for the sewer project... oh which btw I observed the very first trailer on the west end of the lot was actually being used for the Christian Community Service Center construction a block over. Saw people going back and forth and then the light bulb went off that this trailer has nothing to do with the RO either. I still feel this project would do very well, with exception to the office building portion, based on how things are right now. I hope this doesn’t go the way of River Oaks District which had three towers in the first rendering and got built as a midrise, granted it was a huge improvement form what existed before. Hopefully whatever gets value re-engineered, or changed, or whatever is a huge improvement from what was there before and currently. Right now it’s a big dark lot at night, and it’s attracting homeless people.
  10. All the land to the north of The RO lot up to The River Oaks Condo Building belongs to St. John’s. There is a giant multi use field, parking garage, and temporary buildings with a parking lot the Urban Harvest Farmers Market currently uses on Saturday mornings. It is my understanding that eventually this will become new buildings and athletic facilities for the school.
  11. After taking some time to observe the area, it looks like the two trailers and equipment are for the Buffalo Speedway sanitary sewer project I mentioned a few posts back, and has little to do with the RO.
  12. Aside from small activity (utility work, generators getting fueled up, desks and furniture moving into the trailers) not much has happened (Yet). Re-examining the groundwater impacts a few posts back; the areas marked would be the Phase 2 section of the project. The old gas station sat on where Phase 1 is going. If this was the cause of contamination it migrated south. I'm unsure if they would address this first, or go ahead and begin removing trees, busting up the old Exxon Training Center and parking lot concrete and begin setting footings for the new buildings. Also Buffalo Speedway from West Alabama going North is undergoing the start of a Capital Project to replace wastewater facilities. Crews have been out this past week setting up, and big machinery is out ready to dig. The plan I heard, is to tunnel under the street to do the work without disturbing the esplanades and most of the trees that sit on them. The project will take 16 months to complete. https://www.publicworks.houstontx.gov/sites/default/files/assets/001-project_Information_notice_r-000035-0012-4.pdf https://www.publicworks.houstontx.gov/sites/default/files/assets/construction_phasing_map.pdf Source with more informative PDFs: https://www.publicworks.houstontx.gov/node/342 Furthermore, The project to improve West Alabama is still alive. The Upper Kirby info I've found for Buffalo Speedway - Shepherd is outdated, but hopefully there will be a new timeline. Eventually this Alabama Street improvement will go all the way east to Almeda. Source: https://communityimpact.com/houston/heights-river-oaks-montrose/transportation/2020/07/07/improvements-are-coming-to-west-alabama-street-in-river-oaks-area-in-2021/ This intersection is going to look very different in just a few years. Edit: I rechecked the Upper Kirby District site and the West Alabama reconstruction from Buffalo Speedway to Shepherd is listed to happen in 2021/2022 for $22 Million. http://www.upperkirbydistrict.org/index.php/the-district-at-work/district-projects/coming-soon
  13. Question/Theory: With this new location coming, what happens to the San Felipe/610 location? Does it remain to serve the Galleria area as is... or does it become so valuable with the multiple high rises on one side of it and River Oaks District to the South, that it gets snatched up for more future development? At the very least I could see the large surface lot trading up for a multistory parking garage. Look at it on the map, that parking lot is the same size as the Arabella and Sky House combined.
  14. I posted this last year, it’s a virtual tour of the new portion of the school. The gym and pool are shown towards the end of the video.
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