Jump to content

zaphod

Full Member
  • Content Count

    381
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

57 Excellent

About zaphod

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Tear down the bleachers and rebuild shorter ones, and turn it in a multi-sport venue that can also hold conventions, concerts, the rodeo, etc. Imagine having amateur or club sport events like cricket, lacrosse, soccer, etc, there. I wonder if it would be possible to remove the upper half of the walls with slatted operable windows that let in natural air. Then hang large ducted fans similar to those used in highway tunnels to facilitate constant if slow moving airflow. Similar to how you can cool a gaming PC case with only two very small fans and vents that are relatively obstructed, only on a humongous scale. The window shutters could close in the event of rain or high winds, and the direction the fans blow could be adjusted by a computerized system that takes into consideration outside wind. This would essentially lower operational costs of the building by getting rid of the need for air conditioning and help shift things in favor of keeping it. As long as it had moving air to avoid a greenhouse effect, being in the shade should keep it at acceptable temperatures even in the summer. If the inside was going to be gutted and redone, the future seats could have automatic sliding doors to the mezzanine so it could have AC.
  2. I agree with everyone here - I'd favor more independent suburban cities and I don't think landlocking City of Houston is a problem in the year 2019, but on the other hand it doesn't seem like there is political will to create new suburban cities. I do think balkanization could paradoxically help with regional efforts because cities have resources they can contribute to council of governments(COG's), like NTCOG in Dallas. Anyways, to take a step back here, what do we really want? Is it more local control? Is it "municipal lite" level of services and rules, even some simple zoning? I know Counties are very limited in their ability to pass ordinances, so zoning is out. What are some outside the box solutions? What if Harris County was split into districts, which could differentiate somewhat on tax rates and also had the ability to do certain things benefitting the local area, while still cooperating as a whole for things that make sense?
  3. Rule 2 seems too specific to be anything other than a reaction to a certain incident
  4. My stance has always been that the Embassy Suites is the sort of forgettable urban building that will get imploded before its 40th birthday for something bigger. Like the Crown Plaza in the Med Center. It's just filler and welcome investment at a time when downtown really needed it.
  5. I hate this project. 6 million city subsidy is seen as a small amount, but it could pay for so much more, especially when the city's finances are suffering from the property tax revenue cap and ongoing pension debts, etc. 6 million is 10 cops making 60,000 a year for 10 years. 6 million is a community center or a library, or two swimming pools or four city parks. Or a thousand summer jobs for troubled teens. Plus its ugly. What do the developers think this is, Youngstown? There ain't no red brick industrial lofts off I-10. The actual industrial heritage of that area(when there was an MKT spur track going up towards Hammerly Rd) was quonset huts and metal buildings, most of which are still there(Bison materials, Elliot Forklifts, etc). You want industrial reuse? Rent some of those old business suite centers and give them a power washing and there's your startup space right there. It was good enough for companies that pioneered the mapping of the sea floor or calculated the location of oil using seismic data and powerful computers back in the 1970s, so its certainly good enough for tech companies of tomorrow. There is zero need to build this kind of thing in an area that's full of half empty high rises that are brand new. It's no mans land, I was just thinking the other day of how strange the neighborhood off Brittmore is, wedged between the beltway and the levee. Its full of unrestricted townhouse development and light industry. Just leave it alone. Why do startups need some corny fake restored warehouses anyways? What they probably need is cash money and business support. It's a cargo cult IMO. Someone looked at the success of startup culture housed in adaptive reuse locations and completely missed the context and cause and effect(rust belt city with strong eds and meds legacy uses run down structures because they are cheap). Yes it must be the looks of old brick that makes people creative, its what they want! Cringey AF.
  6. Realistically, what are the chances of this happening? Anyways, I also really like the design. It is more classic, sort of like the current crop of new towers going up in Chicago.
  7. I never suggested that we would house the poor next to junkyards and concrete plants. Instead I am suggesting that we buy the land from under the junkyards and ready mix plants and tear them all down. So those things would be gone(their owners would presumably take the city's offer and move to Crosby)Then replace them with affordable housing development. This kills two birds with one stone - it removes blight AND it adds affordable housing.
  8. I love how this tower has a certain kind of symettry and theme, like the older 1980s towers near it. Houston's skyline is very recognizable and this contributes positively to that. I really dislike the current trend in architecture where a lot of buildings are goofy jenga stacks of glass blocks with a weird oversized podium. Those buildings don't look like anything, they are just noise. To make matters worse, that style is associated with the dubious under-occupied condo towers for the foreign mega-rich to hoard or launder their money in cities like Melbourne, Vancouver, etc which often don't have a real economic foundation to justify their levels of real estate investment.
  9. I hate to be that guy, and to be clear I'm not opposed to public owned affordable housing development, but... Isn't it really expensive to build high rise apartment units compared to other forms of housing? Especially buildings like this, it appears to be far more high end than a standard midrise block or concrete slab tower. What kind of factors or variables lead to the decision to put public housing resources into mixed income high rises in one of the ritziest areas of town? If I was in charge I think I would strategically buy up land that's currently occupied by noxious, trash land uses that hurt surrounding communities, like junkyards and concrete plants around Acres Homes and the Northside. Then I would plow all that under and build tidy looking houses and small apartments there, with trees and stuff. The land must be very cheap, and so would the construction methods for that kind of housing. And instead of it all being apartments, I would mix in some housing to sell to specially qualified persons. Create a real neighborhood.
  10. Google Earth pro has aerial imagery for almost all of Harris County from 1953 and 1978. What I'm seeing is that from the 50's through the 70's, the KISD appendage would have been majority rural with some then-new middle class subdivisions. The poor areas in that part of the district seemed to have emerged later. In the 1953 imagery, Recreation Farms was an actual "buy a lot in the country" type of community, and not just a collection of large, deep lots full of trailers and shanties as evidenced by the ratio of normal looking houses to other structures. Is it possible that the district was trying to gerrymander its way towards some source of property tax revenue like oil wells or towards a large new subdivision?
  11. The big empty areas I am referring to: NE: The area around Generation Park and Lake Houston Pkwy E: Huffman. How much would it cost vs. other options to expand the Crosby Fwy instead SW: The Missouri City antenna fields along Fort Bend Tollway S: Manvel, which is closer to downtown than Katy. Once Pearland builds out it is next in like down 288. SE: Alvin, if TXDOT built an SH 35 Tollway This is more sprawl, but it's no worse than building pushing the suburban edge to touch Brookshire and Waller next. All of these things are less than 25 miles from Downtown, which is approximately the distance from Katy to the city center.
  12. The opposition has a bigger picture in mind. Expanding freeways induces sprawl outward in certain directions at the expense of others while leapfrogging areas of the city where there is a lot of vacant or underutilized land. Houston has a lot of room to grow to the northeast. It has big empty areas all over the place, including inside the Beltway. There are other highways that don't get a lot of traffic. There are other highways which could facilitate growth elsewhere, like a toll road to Alvin. Big picture, my friend. The Houston metro is growing. The Houston metro is a big place. Infinitely expanding the already overcrowded highways in the parts of the city that already sprawl out to the limits of what normal people are willing to commute is the highest cost lowest return option there is.
  13. Honestly, I would just tear the entire thing down and coordinate with the city to realign the streets by the bayou. Franklin could probably arc out a little bit, allowing restoration of the bayou's banks and make room for steps that go down to a waterfront patio or plaza. If the freeway reconstruction happens, most plans ive seen suggest that I-10 will shift north and the I-45 loop will be reduced in size, making the site more open and less constrained on its northern half. Then subdivide it into multiple blocks and gradually fill them in with conventional mixed use development. Over the long span of time it will just feel like an extension of downtown. IMO there's nothing special about that post office. Houston is full of buildings that look like that and they aren't endangered.
  14. Where were these people before they were homeless, or when they were not homeless or in shelters or institutions or jail? Did they live with relatives or friends? A dilapadated motel? Also where do we expect them to go if/when they become clean? Seattle doesn't have an equivalent to Aldine or Cloverleaf, so where are the kind of people living in those wrecked trailers clustered together in the woods living? Also giving them housing doesn't mean we give them full sized apartments. What about some kind of dorm with on-site security? I don't think institutionalization is necessarily the right answer because taking away a person's freedoms is not a casual matter. Think about what it takes to put someone in prison, and those are criminals who actually hurt someone. You want to give someone a life sentence behind bars just because they were a public nuisance? How would you enforce these rules and apply 'strikes' against a person leading to them being locked up? Sounds like something that could be abused or subject to bias. If we are going to put people in institutions then their liberties must only be restricted by the absolute minimum degree necessary, with frequent reviews where the restrictions would be lifted. Instead of imprisoning people in mental wards what about hybrid outpatient options where people aren't locked up?
  15. I don't know many details but I have an ancestor who was an oilfield foreman and stayed at a camp in that general area around that time period. Maybe it was West Columbia.
×
×
  • Create New...