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Eggplant

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Eggplant last won the day on January 25 2012

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  1. I can’t imagine how they could shoehorn something so large in that space.
  2. I enjoyed a delicious dinner at Star Fish last night. Appears that everything is back to normal.
  3. That would be Reed’s Key Shop. There’s another shop with the same name at 3601 S Sandman St. I assume, but don’t know, that they’re related.
  4. Whew guys . . . cool it. We're not discussing some life or death issue here. Whether or not MarkSMU chooses to dine at Mexican restaurants has no bearing on, well, anything! I don't give a rat's ass if his comments have some holes in them. The issues are tangential at best to anything seriously being discussed here. Mark - go enjoy whatever meal at whatever restaurant you choose.
  5. You're missing the point of the article. The premise was to pick the best neighborhood in each of the top 10 cities by population in the country, not to pick the best neighborhoods in the country. We can assume the list would have been very different if that were the case; regardless, I'm proud to have been recognized.
  6. The city has been in Heights neighborhoods recently to cut away portions of trees that pose some risk to utility wires. I'm aware that the trees live in the area between the sidewalk and the road where the city can pretty much do what it wants; regardless, the work is done by men who don't appear to know or care about the long-term effects on the tree itself. They cut a large V at the top to enable the wires to swing freely but potentially do serious damage to the tree, and move on to the next house. I know that trees are a polarizing topic around here. I hope, however, that we can agree that one of the things that makes the Heights so appealing is the tree-lined streets that grace the neighborhoods. Has anyone or any group been successful in working out a solution to the problem? Is there an alternative fix that homeowners can do on their own (at their own expense) that would satisfy the city? A couple of neighbors and I were brainstorming and the only thing we could imagine is some sort of conduit that is supported by the tree branches and provides the wires an unencumbered path through the tree. Also, does the city provide any warning before the crews arrive? I tried calling the city 311 line but the person on the other end of the phone, although friendly, wasn't very helpful.
  7. Thanks for the reply. It's surprising they would feature such meaningless values so prominently on the page. In the case of 337 W 22nd, the "rough idea" is a 90K range. Not very helpful if we're trying to get a feel for how listing price and final sales prices compare.
  8. Those are both beautiful homes. I would be lucky to live in either one of them and would enjoy seeing them in my neighborhood. Marksmu - can you please explain the relevance of the "sales price range" that appears in HAR listings of sold homes? Based on the "What is Sales Price Range" blurb on the website, it's a pretty meaningless number. Why do they bother listing it?
  9. Brie - thanks for the clarification. I didn't know or had forgotten that the commission opening was closed. Thanks also for your detailed and thoughtful response to s3mh's questions. Many of us here appreciate solid discussions of the issues unencumbered by personal attacks.
  10. Brie - I am looking forward to your post as well. Your approach has always been reasonable and level-headed. That is appreciated by the many people who read this board daily but rarely post. The board leaves little room for nuance and respect for the other side. Posters often claim that everyone on their block is one thing or another; i.e., pro- or anti-ordinance. I'm sure that's a pile of bullcrap. We all tend to congregate with like-minded people so it's not a surprise they believe everyone is on their side. A while back we saw blue or yellow signs adorning Heights properties signaling the owners' take on the ordinance. It's my belief that while many HAIF regular posters are either all blue or yellow, many Heights residents are shades of green with leanings toward either the blue or yellow corner. My story: I'm a relatively "seasoned" individual (I've been around), have lived in many cities both in and outside the U.S., and have never lived in a place without rules limiting our design choices when building or remodeling our homes. I have loved that aspect of each of these cities because the neighborhood spoke a consistent design language that everyone understood. Sure, there were times my neighbors fought the rulings of the governing boards, but people respected an appeal process that was seen as an extension of the historical commission, not (as it is often perceived here) as proof that the commission members are a bunch of idiots. While many posters here refer to the ordinance as "me telling you what to do", we saw it in a different way; i.e., that it is "we" agreeing to abide by a set of design rules in order to promote a consistent look throughout a neighborhood. And yet I did not have a yellow sign on my lawn. I recognized then that a major difference between all the other places I've lived and Houston is that the design rules were in place for generations. Most people were either born into a home or chose to live there with the rules already in place. I have concluded that the manner in which the ordinance was introduced here was inappropriate and may or may not represent the will of the residents. I am concerned about friends and neighbors who bought homes in the Heights as recently as a few years ago with the expectation of enlarging the homes to provide for growing families but now cannot do so. I felt that the ordinance provisions should have been phased in over a longer period of time and that the rules should have been more accommodating to existing homeowners needing to expand. Brie . . . like anyone running for a public position, you are attempting to appeal to many different contingents. I only ask that you take a firm position in favor or against the commission you want to join, and recognize that a large number of people will be threatened by it. Also, please don't take the comments of the folks on this board (including me of course) as representative of anyone other than the poster. Many of the people on this board who have supported your efforts on-line and at the hearings want only one thing . . . that the ordinance be repealed or the Heights historic designation rescinded. However, many of your supporters in other venues (primarily the Nextdoor discussion boards) are not of that mindset.
  11. This is the first rendering I've seen. It's hard to imagine how something this size would fit into the existing space, and it's hard to see how the design is "in the Craftsman style to blend in with the neighborhood." What am I missing?
  12. That's an important distinction. The story north of 11th is not as clear as what you described. Take a quick walk and you'll find several recent bungalow renovations for sale on the 1600 block of Columbia and Arlington including 1644 Columbia (listing for $865K) which was discussed on another thread, and 1522 Columbia (listing for $750K) which is in process. Recent sales include 1539 Columbia, 1420 Columbia, and 1602 Arlington. (The HAR iPad app does not show sales prices. My personal observation was that the homes did not sit unsold for very long.) Oxford Street is more schizophrenic. Although there have been recent sales (1401 and 1433 Oxford, both on the historic side), some homeowners on the historic side have complained at HHA meetings that they are unable to sell their properties because potential buyers are restricted in how the homes can be improved. On the other hand, there are older (seemingly abandoned) homes in advanced stages of disrepair on the east side just north of the high school. These lots haven't sold even though, according to the map referenced above, they are not subject to the restrictions. I am not opposed to the idea of historic renovation restrictions. I enjoy areas of our country (Philadelphia, Boston, etc.) that have maintained their beauty and historical relevance due to restrictions that are clearly explained, consistently enforced, and generally respected. I can therefore appreciate what the district cheerleaders are trying to achieve. However, I don't believe that the implementation in Houston achieves the desired results and am unconvinced by a lot of the rhetoric on both sides. I'm keeping an open mind, so keep writing. You're welcome Sonic0boom. It's not surprising that an Oxford St resident would be confused; the street is all over the place on the map. Don't worry. I won't tell.
  13. RedScare - Please clarify those comments. Some (less than half) of the houses in Houston Heights South (I-10 to 11th) on the west side are in the historic district; however, all of the houses north of 11th (south of 20th) on the west side are in the district. I am basing this on the Historic Heights East and South maps found here. Also, which two houses on Oxford/Columbia/Arlington are you referring to? I'm not questioning your count; I just want to confirm that we're on the same page.
  14. I never forget about Pondicheri; it's in my Houston Top 5! Their "Texas Chaat" is a family favorite. I didn't mention it because of the 15 minute driving constraint I used for the post. Although close in distance, the drive to Upper Kirby can be a nuisance for some people at rush hour whereas the trip downtown is relatively painless. Regardless, we do it all the time. That chaat is amazing. (Note to anyone clicking on the link - the actual dish doesn't look very much like the photograph. They've perfected the presentation over the last year.) Back to the Heights . . . one roadblock I encounter when talking to restaurant owners about expanding here is the assumption that the only viable Heights option is Washington Ave. I see Washington in the same way I see downtown or Kirby or Rice Village; i.e., driving destinations with lots of good options, but outside the definition of a neighborhood restaurant from a geographic and walkability perspective. Whether it's the alcohol prohibition or misconceptions about our demographic, it seems that alternatives on 19th, Studewood, 11th, White Oak etc. were not even considered. I suppose my (cautious) optimism stems from the belief that the growth we've seen in the last year and the anticipated (keeping my fingers crossed here) success of Zelko, Liberty Kitchen and the other newbies, will inspire others to follow suit.
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