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zaphod

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Everything posted by zaphod

  1. The shorter of the two light gray office buildings on the south side of 610 North, 2727 North Loop, has no windows and appears to be gutted save for construction lighting. Is it being remodeled or dismantled? This building: https://www.google.com/maps/@29.805516,-95.4458515,3a,75y,96.02h,99.63t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sH7y25Ox3E8m28Ldfq51wwA!2e0!6shttps:%2F%2Fstreetviewpixels-pa.googleapis.com%2Fv1%2Fthumbnail%3Fpanoid%3DH7y25Ox3E8m28Ldfq51wwA%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D268.28018%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i16384!8i8192
  2. This of course makes me think they should hang on to and polish it rather than toss it. Having a recognizable brand that people associate with trust and longevity you'd think would be desirable nowadays. Like people like nostalgic hometown stuff, they like Whataburger's branding for example.
  3. I love these eclectic smaller buildings.
  4. Agree with the points above. These days a huge "trophy" building wouldn't do as much as something residential/hotel to bring in foot traffic that has nice lower floors to make the street level atmosphere more appealing.
  5. Let's be fair though, the areas that FM 1960 passes through are really a lot more representative of the majority of our nearly 7 million person metro area than being in the western half of the loop. Greater Houston continues to grow unabated while the population of the city proper remains flat and is its share is shrinking down to become a little more than 1/3 of the region. I'll just say it, despite being the person to you know, post on the forum, I've always kind of had a mixed love/hate relationship with this place. The City of Houston proper is cool and some outlying places are cool but the bulk of where most people live in the metro as a whole are really disappointing to me. I also don't really want us to grow so fast anymore, because any growth from now on is going to take the form of the schlock that's expanded out along the Grand Parkway between Katy and 290 and that doesn't add anything good for those of us already here except more traffic and making the attractions or public places we do have more crowded. It's not just walkability, it's everything. These insular McMansion subdivisions keep the residents inside. They have one way in and out so the commercial development that follows is just a crust around the edges of free standing Chick Fil A's and car washes and nail salons, Ctrl+C Ctrl+V. Then the service industry peasant class moves into apartments kept neatly out of the way. The only parks are kids baseball fields or whatever the Precinct 3/4 people can justify mowing once a month. Since we are now in the retail apocalypse new growth isn't spawning new town centers or malls that act like places or anchors for development. The outlying towns in the growth direction like Katy and Tomball decided not to capitalize on it or annex the stuff around them. I realize that you will say Houston has always been like this, but that's just not true. Older areas developed up through the 70s and 80s were "ugly" with stuff like gas stations and billboards but most older neighborhoods do have kind of a community vibe. Like if you go to Garden Oaks or Sharpstown they have streets with sidewalks that all join up, there are city of Houston parks and public schools embedded in them. These places are also a lot denser than more modern suburbia. Also back in the day there were developers with interesting visions like George Mitchell and The Woodlands and all sorts of clusters of shiny office towers and shopping centers and stuff that was exciting. Nowadays its just filling the prairies with KB Homes the Landing at Mustang Bend 70" 90" whatever the hell those numbers mean. The FM 1960 area is sort of like the transition zone or prototype of the newer wave of suburbs versus the older ones. Eventually Greater Houston is just going to be this massive behemoth with no character whatsoever. The boosters will go "oh look at this ethnic restaurant in this skanky strip mall from the 80s we are so diverse" as being the only thing of note in a whole swath of blah. Yeah I get it, me living in Houston complaining about our sprawl is like moving to Phoenix and saying its too hot or moving to New York and saying people are rude in the subway. But its my honest opinion.
  6. Instead of doing that I-45 widening project, just extend the Hardy. It would displace fewer people. Though I don't know if would impact more people with car exhaust pollution.
  7. What would it take to just get a bus from Galveston to Houston up and running? Seems more attainable and a better fit for the likely ridership at this point.
  8. So they are going to paint part of the street green and not much else then? Still see above ground power lines and skinny sidewalks.
  9. This is a crazy idea, but Seabrook and Bacliff seem to have a critical mass of stilt houses to make it viable and so do areas of Galveston Island... A private pay parking lot that's elevated on reinforced concrete piers bored deep into the ground, above the highest known storm surge level. Catering to residents who live in stilt houses whose homes will survive a flood but whose cars won't. It would be located in neighborhoods like this so people could walk home after dropping off their car a few hours before the storm hits. Alternatively buy a lot in Montgomery or Willis or somewhere that's usually OK during a Hurricane and people can subscribe to move their vehicle and schedule courtesy shuttle van pickups whenever there's a storm warning.
  10. I think it depends on what you are accustomed to buying. Kroger seems to have more national brands and better selection of things like microwave dinners or canned soup or string cheese and yogurt or whatever. HEB has more sundry items like laundry detergent, store brands for ice cream, junk food, etc. It's a tossup on produce IMO, some HEB's have great produce areas and others have undersized ones whereas Kroger tends to be consistent. HEB does have more beer selection, usually. Regardless, I am glad we have both chains. I would hate for one or the other to knock off the competition. It's nice having two mainstream grocery chains, not just a major chain and some upscale or downscale or ethnic alternatives(Whole Foods or Food Town or El Rancho). That's how it is for most of central Texas, Austin is almost strictly HEB save for a few remaining Randall's. Kind of sucks.
  11. This is an old post, but what does this mean exactly by "pay a premium"? In my real-world experience living in close proximity to HEB, a Kroger Marketplace, and a Walmart Neighborhood market, it is that the Walmart is actually the most expensive on many items and it requires a lot of compromising as they lack a lot of selection or brands the other stores have. Aldi is hit and mess and the quality of what they sell is usually low and makes you compromise even more. Kroger is the most consistently reasonably priced option, IMO HEB is a little bigger and a little better but costs slightly more.
  12. Blah, so why did they start on the Elysian viaduct then? From what I can tell, the proposed Hardy extension would only lead to the removal of maybe 4 or 5 houses and a couple of likely to be disused industrial structures. Given the concerns about the I-45 expansion the Hardy extension would have lesser impacts but still achieve similar goals.
  13. I noticed that there was a mult-story steel framed building going up in downtown Conroe the other day, and didn't see anything about it posted on HAIF. Not a huge project or anything but very interesting to see a "urban" type of construction happening in the old part of Conroe. I always thought it would be cool if downtown Conroe grew. Woodforest Bank tore down its small branch in old downtown Conroe and is replacing it with a larger 3-story office block as pictured below: Article from courier/your conroe news: Woodforest Bank building a downtown Conroe landmark of the past, beacon for the future Rendering of the planned building, courtesy of the CEDC website article: Downtown Conroe Prepared for Major Growth
  14. Does anyone know why it is necessary to widen I-45 North AND build the Hardy Toll Road extension? I assume planners and engineers took the completion (or non-completion) of either project into consideration in their traffic forecasts, right?
  15. I don't know if this was the intent behind building them in the first place, but a benefit of the trolleys is that they would encourage beach tourists to park in the strand/downtown in the parking garages there. People think the trolleys are cool and unlike a bus they seem safe and will take them where they want to go, which is down to the seawall. This is a graceful and fair solution to the problem that is tourist parking near beaches, it is better than either building huge surface lots by the seawall or alternatively not having enough parking and excluding visitors from Houston who have been coming to Galveston since the early 1900s. Another thought is that when tourists park in the strand area they are more likely to eat and drink and buy stuff from local restaurants and shops that in between. Also if people's cars are parked in a parking garage a mile from the beach they won't take coolers full of beer in glass bottles or whatever else... Now there needs to be a train from Houston to Galveston again. It would make going to the beach a lot more accessible while reducing weekend traffic congestion from the island and during storm events the train would be a high capacity evacuation shuttle.
  16. That Walgreens was there when I was a kid in the late 1990s and also its architecture looks similar to some other Walgreens or former Walgreens I've seen, are you sure it was a hobby shop? I think there was a Ben Franklin Crafts somewhere in that shopping center. I vaguely remember the little Walmart that was the Big Lots, it moved across the road into the building that's now a self storage warehouse. The Hobby Lobby and Dollar tree further to the west was a Kmart. What a blast from the past though. That shopping center had a bunch of neat things. There was a pet store called Wet Pets, the owners came to our elementary school and brought snakes and other critters for us to touch. Across the road in that old Randall's was a Marco's mexican restaurant our family ate at a lot, those used to be a big thing but now seem to have vanished. Also next to that Randalls was a video store that rented/sold NES games which was pretty awesome. Late 90's our family moved out of state and to other various places and even though I live in Houston again I honestly never venture to that area of the metro.
  17. I hope this place does well. It's really unbelievable how well its turned out architecturally speaking.
  18. But "Puppies for Breakfast" got your attention and you remember it. Hope those events do well and it doesn't turn into Coffee with Cars. I guess the equivalent would be trashy people with aggressive dogs coming and ruining it for everyone.
  19. Well they did announce about 5 locations and seem to be expanding in outer suburban areas so Rosenburg fits the bill. I imagine they'll build a few more in Cypress, Katy, maybe Kingwood or Conroe or something.
  20. What, aren't you familiar with Mount Houston? Back in the day the postal workers had to use mules to ascend it's treacherous slopes using a well beaten path we now know as Aldine Mail Route.
  21. I'm sure Werner Herzog approves. Probably.
  22. That's a pretty hefty building compared to the more basic 2-3 story clinic design they have all over the city(Porter, Baybrook, etc) Where is this going to be built, exactly? The Memorial Villages makes me think it's literally in Hedwig or Spring Valley along 10 by Bingle or something?
  23. The first Houston area location will be in Spring and will open this summer: https://communityimpact.com/houston/spring-klein/impacts/2021/04/30/dutch-bros-coffee-to-open-first-greater-houston-area-location-in-spring-this-summer/
  24. Kind of wish they had waited a few more months. Now we may have to wait another year to see even the dirt being moved on new stuff around the TMC, etc.
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