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  1. I'm not sure if there's a current thread on this or not, but it looks like they are moving forward with toll lanes on 288. I hadn't heard about this - much less hearing it was delayed. Anyone have any idea what the design is going to look like, particularly coming into downtown & the med center? http://blog.chron.com/thehighwayman/2015/10/texas-288-toll-lane-work-expected-mid-2016/
  2. Noticed a renovation registered with the state this week.
  3. Noticed a demolition permit months ago. Been watching the area since. Today I finally see the demo has started.
  4. Will be a great addition for the neighborhood especially the medical center and UH!!!
  5. I'm pretty sure I saw stories about this tract a couple of years ago, but I cant find it in the third ward section. This was proposed to be a LGBTQ seniors housing project if I remember correctly. There are screened fences up and you can see site work being done.
  6. Does anyone know what's up with those run down houses on the side of 288 around Iowa Colony? They had trucks out there about a year ago and I was hoping they would haul them off but they just moved them around/possibly added more(?). Someone took the liberty of tagging them up with graffiti. They are falling over with front porch awnings hanging down and roofs seemingly caved in. Who owns them/why are they there? They look so bad. I've heard a rumor that about a decade ago the city put them there so their police department could patrol 288/set up a speed trap, but I don't know the truth behind that or what they're still doing there..
  7. This one is opening next month (April 13, 2019), and will be home to Houston's Major League Rugby team, the Houston SaberCats. It's currently in the construction phase (broke ground back in July 2018), and will have a modest capacity of 4,000. Overall project cost is $15.25 million, and was partially funded by a long-term loan from the City of Houston. The location here is city-owned land at a newly-developed addition to Houston Sports Park which will be visible along the South Freeway (SH 288) at its overpass at Sims Bayou. Principal naming rights were sold to current team sponsor AVEVA, who is a British-based multinational software company. Here are some early renderings (from March 2017), a more accurate/recent set of renderings (from July 2018) , and some recent snapshots of construction: Here are some more recent renderings:
  8. I know that TX-288 has a super-wide median and was designed that way, but it was designed for express lanes when it was built. Still, the 100 ft./30 m. space seems to have a lot of potential either way and a lot to the imagination. So, what would you do? While making it a six lane super highway in both directions with two elevated HOT lanes might be the "du jour" way of making highways, I would like to see two HOT lanes in each direction and an extension of the Red Line down to Pearland. Any extra space would be used for shoulders. That said, what would YOU like to see in the median? More lanes? Rail-based transit? HOT lanes? A lane for the daily Pearland/Houston bike commute? (Just kidding. Maybe.) Spare me the blubbering about politics and please don't attack others' ideas...this is mostly for fun.
  9. TxDOT looking into ways to ease congestion on the Southwest Freeway from 288 all the way to Beltway 8. I guess there's already been a meeting on this last year in September 2014. Here's the TxDOT sight: www.mysouthwestfreeway.com Outside of the "lipstick on a pig" ideas, here are some thoughts (not 100% original btw) on how traffic can be eased on 59 / 69 without much ROW purchased: 1.) Configure on ramps / off ramps on top of each other like at 59/69 and Kirby between 610 and the beltway. That way merging and exiting traffic isn't fighting one another 2.) Build elevated two-way HOV lanes in current HOV ROW from Spur to past the beltway. (possible?) 3.) Reconfigure Chimney Rock exit (headed south) by exiting before the 610 traffic merges into 59/69 and have those exiting 59/69 to 610 do so before the Chimney Rock entrance to the freeway. Either that or eliminate the Chimney Rock exit / entrances all together. Ideas that might require ROW purchase and most definitely be more expensive even if no ROW: 1.) Extend Westpark tollway (WPT) past 610 and grade separate at 610 interchange. Possibly grade separate at Newcastle and have tollway end between Newcastle and Wesleyan. If not, have just have it end between 610 frontage and Newcastle. 2.) Direct connector from 610 traffic headed north to WPT headed west. 3.) Direct connector from WPT headed east to 610 headed south. (I don't think a WPT east to 610 North can fit) 4.) 2 lane Direct connector from 59/69 north to 610 south. Current one lane config. is big bottle neck. 5.) Direct connector from southbound 610 traffic to westbound WPT. To limit ROW, the direct connector would have to be after the 59/69 exit and tie into the extended WPT. Ideas that might require significant ROW but not quite to the level of the Katy freeway redesign: 1.) If previous #5 option not available, have a direct connector from southbound 610 traffic to westbound WPT on the north side of 59/69. It would be something like that of the new 290 to I10 direct connector. However this leads me to my next idea... 2.) Purchase land between 59/69 and Westpark rd. and WPT. Shift 59/69 slightly south and decrease the sharpness of the 59/69 curve at the WPT intersection. Katy Freeway clear-cutting option: 1.) Turn single HOV lane into 3 HOT lanes with the middle lane being bi-directional (much like what 290 was supposed to have) 2.) Add a full 5th lane to each direction of 59/69. 3.) Let them eat cake. Anyone else have any thoughts?
  10. Per Carroll Robinson's website at the link below, on November 5th, HCC closed on 9.177 acres of land on N. MacGregor at 288 for the new Coleman College of Health Sciences’ Medical Science & Technology Early College Charter High School (what a long name!). http://tinyurl.com/ld5l5md That parcel has been vacant for over 20 years. I think the last thing to be there was an old nightclub, and before that, there were apartments. Old N. MacGregor Way borders the property to the south and was closed and fenced off about 3-5 years ago. It's also one of the few places where you can see Brays Bayou's original path before it was straightened for the first time in the 1920s.
  11. I read sometimes past that 288 will get four more lanes between 59 and CR 56. I've been looking for more info since then but couldn't get anything. Any news, links, timeline on this?
  12. Building projects advance in Pearland area By Karen Zurawski Published 11:43 a.m., Tuesday, July 31, 2012 0 Pearland City Council approved amendments to the performance agreements between the city, Pearland Economic Development Corp. and Kelsey-Seybold to add a 60-day extension to the completion deadline. The $36 million project, including land, construction, all equipment and fees, now is on schedule, said Nicholas Ro, Kelsey-Seybold's chief legal and strategic officer, and that means some 800 employees will be moving to new offices in July 2013. The facility can accommodate another 400 employees, and the 18-acre site at Kirby Drive and Shadow Creek Parkway has room for another building and/or parking garage. Kelsey-Seybold started the design process for the facility in 2008, Ro said, but the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers financial services firm and its impact on the economy stalled the project. Confidence in the economy returned in mid-2010 and Kelsey-Seybold restarted its expansion process. As part of the process, the company discovered that more than 60 percent of its employees live in the southern part of the Houston area - including Friendswood, Clear Lake and Pearland. Pearland stood out as a site for the administrative building for a number of reasons, Ro said. "It has great amenities. There's lots of retail and lots of restaurants." The city also offers a great potential for an employee base with a highly educated work force, he said. Other important criteria on Ro's list include affordable housing, great schools, reduced commute times for employees and lower land costs in Pearland compared to some other areas of Houston. Lower land costs in the Pearland area are a definite draw to developers, especially in the last six to eight months, said Brad Lybrand, broker at TGB Crosswell, which was involved in the land deal for Kelsey-Seybold. In December, the company sold land to Sam's Real Estate Business Trust, which is building a 136,000-square-foot Sam's Club on 16.5 acres at Texas 288 and Discovery Bay Drive. The project will include a fuel station. "I think construction crews are working every night till 9 p.m.," said Lybrand, referring to the Sam's Club site. "They're supposed to have a grand opening in mid-October. I understand they're on target to hit that." No timeline exists for TGB's development of a retail center at Discovery Bay Drive and the Texas 288 frontage road nor for five commercial pads adjacent to Sam's Club. As far as tenants, Lybrand said, "We're talking with several groups right now. We'd like to see sit-down restaurants." Behind Sam's Club at 2500 Business Center Drive is a 370-unit apartment complex, Retreat at Shadow Creek Ranch, which is near the 347-unit Discovery at Shadow Creek Ranch. McCann Realty Partners developed both projects. Mark Wood, McCann Realty Partners director of development, said the goal is to open the new complex around Feb. 1. The project will have units with one to three bedrooms, ranging in size from 650 to 1,478 square feet. Preliminary monthly rents are $850 to $1,400. "We love Pearland. "It's been very good for us," said Wood, citing its proximity to the medical center, schools and shopping centers. The second phase of Residences at Pearland Town Center, 11200 Broadway, opened a few months ago adding 172 units to an existing 62. Square footage ranges from 668 to 1,463 and monthly rents from $1,015 to $1,845 in the Sueba USA Corp. developments. The selection of Pearland by Kelsey-Seybold is part of an evolution in development, said Matt Buchanan, president of the Pearland Economic Development Corp. The city experienced tremendous growth in housing first, he said. In "Growth, Pearland Demographic Overview," published by the Pearland EDC, the U.S. census reported the city grew 142 percent to 91,252 between 2000 and 2010. This growth means that Pearland was the 15th fastest-growing city in the United States and the second fastest-growing city in Texas, says the EDC. The overview reports more than 16,000 single-family homes and more than 4,000 multifamily units were built between 2000 and 2010. Retail growth followed the residential growth. In the last four to five years especially, strong retail growth has occurred in the city, he said, and now, companies like Kelsey-Seybold are coming. PEDC encouraged Kelsey-Seybold's move by providing up to $413,000 in assistance for the development of the infrastructure that supports the headquarters facility. Other incentives relate to new jobs created over a 10-year period and 60 percent refunds by the PEDC in the half-percent sales tax and by the city in the 1 percent sales tax over the same time period. And growth continues. Last October, for example, the EDC announced that Utah-based Merit Medical Systems Inc., a global medical device company, would build a research, development and manufacturing facility on 12 acres at 14646 Kirby Drive, just north of Shadow Creek Ranch. The two-story, 118,000-square-foot facility will employ more than 200 employees. "We have a high concentration of medical providers," said Buchanan, adding that the city's proximity to the Texas Medical Center is a factor. "It does seem a natural lure for companies in the medical field - manufacturers and providers of health care and life sciences." The city also is targeting energy companies. Ref-Chem, an engineering firm in the energy field, broke ground in June on 11 acres at Beltway 8 and Tom Bass Parkway, he said, and will have 100 employees. http://www.chron.com...rea-3750181.php
  13. This just in... Please note that this thread is for discussing the 288/South Freeway project. There's a different thread to talk about the 290/Northwest Freeway/Hempstead Tollway project.
  14. Proposal would add toll lanes to U.S. 290 and Texas 288 Commissioners will soon vote on deal to jump-start project By Mike Morris Updated 11:41 p.m., Thursday, April 5, 2012 Projects to widen U.S. 290 and Texas 288 with a mix of free and toll lanes in an attempt to ease congestion in the traffic-choked corridors would get a jump-start under a proposed agreement between Harris County and the Texas Department of Transportation. The deal, scheduled for a vote by Commissioners Court next Tuesday, also foresees the state building a direct connection from Texas 288 to the Texas Medical Center, as well as improving nearby Almeda and Cullen. TxDOT spokesman Bob Kaufman said work on U.S. 290 could start early next year; he declined to say when dirt could turn on Texas 288, but said environmental work is under way. "This is an important step that says we're going to work on this program together, we're both going to bring funding to it, the toll road authority will collect tolls to help pay for it, and it's going to address in an aggressive way the congestion on 290," said Art Storey, the county's director of public infrastructure, who oversees the Harris County Toll Road Authority. Storey said the details of each project still need to be worked out. 2 commissioners wary County Judge Ed Emmett called the agreement exciting, and said it was the product of months of negotiations between state officials and court members. "It's a lot of projects at a time when everybody else is wringing their hands going, 'Gee, what are we going to be able to do?' " he said. "To finally tell people who use 290 and 288, 'Here's a definitive plan and it's going to start sooner rather than later,' I think is a big plus." Precinct 3 Commissioner Steve Radack, through whose precinct a large part of U.S. 290 passes, was more wary. The county, he said, has not been repaid for $77 million it spent developing Segment E of the Grand Parkway before turning the job over to the state. Radack said he would like that back before the county contributes a proposed $400 million to help build U.S. 290, which is under the state's jurisdiction. "What they're asking the county to do is participate in order to get something done," Radack said. "So, we're saying we'll look at participating, but let's look at what y'all are proposing and is it a good plan for the county. It's not Harris County's fault that the state of Texas doesn't have the money to do what is their responsibility." Precinct 2 Commissioner Jack Morman also expressed skepticism, but for a different reason. TxDOT must not neglect Texas 146, the widening of the southeastern portion of Beltway 8, or the expansion of the Ship Channel bridge, he said. "We need a funded plan for all major Harris County projects," Morman said. "So far the focus has been on Grand Parkway and 290. That's fine, but I won't let the east side take a back seat." In 'striking distance' The proposal envisions a free lane being added in each direction on U.S. 290 between the 610 Loop and the Grand Parkway, and two to three managed lanes in the center. There is disagreement about which directions those lanes should flow at what times. The plan for Texas 288, according to the agreement, would see two toll lanes added from U.S. 59 to near the Brazoria County line. TxDOT's Kaufman said it is too early to discuss details on either project. Alan Clark, head of transportation planning for the Houston-Galveston Area Council, said the agreement puts long hoped-for improvements "within striking distance." Both stretches of U.S. 290 and Texas 288 are among TxDOT's 100 most-congested road segments. "None of this would be possible if it weren't for our ability to use toll financing on some of these projects," he said. "The funding shortfall is still very much present when we're talking about adding or constructing lanes that would not be tolled." Cautionary note Citizens Transportation Coalition board chairwoman Marci Perry and advocacy chairwoman Carol Caul said they support improvements to the congested section of U.S. 290 inside Highway 6, but said population statistics do not support such an investment much beyond that point. Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle, whose district is home to a large section of U.S. 290, said there is no question that both projects are needed. "If we want to continue the economic growth and the prosperity that we have, we have to address mobility," Cagle said. "If this agreement is signed, it'll be a signal to everyone, not just within our region but … to the entire nation, that 'Houston is ready to do business - come on down.' " http://www.chron.com...and-3462888.php
  15. METRO Investigating Fatal Morning Bus Accident METRO is placing all necessary resources at the disposal of safety and police personnel who are investigating a fatal accident that occurred on State Highway 288 at MacGregor. Based on preliminary information bus operator David Sayers appears to have lost control of the vehicle after it struck a dump-truck that was also headed south on the same stretch of road. He was returning the bus to the Hiram Clarke Bus Operations Facility at the end of his shift around 8:30 a.m. when the accident occurred. There were no customers on board and no reports of other injuries. METRO president and CEO George Greanias reached out to employees saying, “This is a tragic day. Our first thoughts are with David’s family and co-workers. We will do all we can to support them through this difficult time. We are deeply committed to a safe transit system for customers, operators and our community.”
  16. Everyone knows of the tremendous growth of Pearland and the traffic headache of working commuters it causes on 288. If youve ever driven down 288, you are aware of the huge gap of grass between the North and Southbound lanes. Ive often looked at it sitting in traffic and thought a rail line going from dt all the way down to pearland would be beatiful and ease a lot of congestion. So if not a rail line at least a 2 way HOV.
  17. It looks like the expansion of 518 west of Kirby Dr is making slow but steady progress. I am not sure, but it seems like this might be done in stages. For example, the current activity seems to be going on between Kirby and Half Moon Bay/Southern Trails Drive. Not much west of that yet. What I'm seeing is the big drain pipes are laid and buried, and a line of new power poles now stand about 30-40 feet behind the existing ones. Maybe when they hook those up and take down the old poles, we can expect to see the actual widening begin. The widening can't start too soon, in my opinion. I've only been driving west on 518 steadily for a couple of weeks now, and I'm already weary of the Speed Racer mentality, as folks race and jockey to see who can be first to the narrow part of the road.
  18. I hadn't been there in a while, but the southbound feeder road is now open. The north appears to still be under construction. Now 288 has a continuous feeder from BW8 to Broadway. I know some of the commuters will enjoy the whole thing once it's complete.
  19. I noticed the signs going up Wednesday. http://apps.dot.state.tx.us/apps/project_t...mp;dist=Houston Traffic's gonna be a bear in the morning, they've got the feeder road at that location down to one lane.
  20. Let me preface this by saying I do not live in Pearland or any other suburb for that matter. I just travel in this direction quite often. What is the deal with the 288-Beltway interchange? I've heard absolutely no talk of upgrading it to a full interchange or even just adding a few flyovers. It's ridiculous that two freeways are joined by a series of traffic lights, and as the Pearland area has grown exponentially the traffic situation at the interchange has only gotten worse. Has anyone heard anything about upgrading the interchange? Forgive me if this topic has been discussed before but I didn't see anything.
  21. I think this was mentioned before, but the development on 288/FM2234(S.C. Parkway) that is being anchored by Kroger will have a Starbuck's, Luby's, and a Cracker Barrel. Do folks like Cracker Barrel? It sounds so "country" to me. See link for site plan: http://www.gulfcoastcg.com/gulfcoastcg/doc...Marketplace.pdf
  22. fire up the grill! things are looking mighty fine here in the lone star state. Texas' Growth Continues By Connie Gore Last updated: March 21, 2005 DALLAS-Retail developers and the shops that support them are circling wagons all across Texas, where economic growth and population projections have created a dense and intense marketplace. "We are seeing activity the strongest that we've ever seen," Herbert D. Weitzman, president and CEO of the locally based Weitzman Group and Cencor Realty Services, confirms to GSR. "The Texas economy and the growth is so exciting that many companies are coming in. The guys coming to Texas are looking at the growth. Many other states are stagnant." Texas' Big Four--Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin and San Antonio--are seeing new names and familiar ones unroll formats to cash in on a fashion-conscious consumer market that helped lead the way for making shopping a national pastime. Several restaurant chains, both fast food and high end, have staked claims in Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston. Cabela's Inc., building its first store in Dallas/Fort Worth, also has staked out a spot in Austin in a no-fear move to take a corner at an Interstate 35 intersection that will pit it against a Wal-Mart Supercenter. Meanwhile, Sears Grand, a freestanding format ready to due battle with Kohl's and J.C. Penney, has roped off an I-35 spot in another part of the state capital while Ikea, with one store in Houston and one rising in Dallas/Fort Worth, is shopping sites in Austin. And San Antonio, long considered the red-haired stepchild of Texas metros, has gotten its blessing as a high-end destination with the planned arrivals of Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Bass Pro Shops. "Texas is cruising," Weitzman says. "Consumers are spending...It's a young market because so many people come here for the corporate growth. And, it's fashion oriented." For the first time in years, DFW's occupancy has crossed the 90% threshold, hitting 90.5% in a 153.1-million-sf inventory, of which 4.4 million delivered last year. There isn't a week that goes by without another retail groundbreaking, mostly unanchored specialty venues instead of the grocery-anchored mainstays that once dominated the news. Meanwhile, mall and lifestyle center proposals are cropping up all across North Texas, with three alone seeking municipal abatements for the Interstate 35W and US Highway 287 intersection in Tarrant County. But, Weitzman says, don't put too much stock in all the mall planning because Texas history shows they all aren't likely to make it out of the ground. And if they do, it's not likely that deliveries will come anytime soon or the plan will stay the same. The one-million-sf Firewheel Town Center in Garland, was conceived 12 years ago as an enclosed mall and is delivering in the fall as an open-air product of the Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group. Weitzman says the only sure bet on Tarrant County's dance card is the Shops at Circle T, a 1.6-million-sf lifestyle resort planned by the locally based Hillwood and the Chicago-headquartered General Growth Properties Inc. The groundbreaking has been pushed a couple times, but planners say it will happen this year. Houston's 130-million-sf inventory might be second in size, but it's dead last in occupancy, according to Weitzman's research group. The 86.9% occupancy, though, certainly isn't a deterrent for construction. Last year, 3.4 million sf delivered, including the first phase of the 493,000-sf Market Street in the Woodlands, with the balance coming this spring. The city and its suburban spokes are building grounds for a plethora of projects like the 350,000-sf first phase for the 625,000-sf Crossing at 518; 1.3-million-sf Katy Town Center, a mix of office, retail and entertainment space; and a number of power center projects pushing the size of yesteryear's malls. The state's third largest market, San Antonio, has a 89.9% occupancy. The 32-million-sf inventory picked up 900,000 sf last year and will get far more than that just with the opening of the Shops at La Cantera, a 1.2-million-sf Simon project that took a decade to bring to fruition, according to Weitzman. The project, with its high-end retail concept and names, is San Antonio's mark of maturity as a retail marketplace. The San Antonio project docket has several large developments on the horizon: the 400,000-sf Legacy, set to open by year's end; 500,000-sf North Rim Market, now in the design stages; 327,000-sf Dellview Marketplace, a big-box play; and scores of others, including freestanding stores from a trio of furniture stars. Ashley Furniture Store, opening its first store in the city last year, has bought two more tracts while Haverty's has grabbed a location for a second store at the Forum at Olympia Parkway, and Basset Furniture Direct has marked its first spot at the Village at Forum Parkway. In Austin, its 95.5% occupancy and 28.5-million-sf inventory are magnets for development. The 750,000-sf Wolf Ranch, another Simon project, delivers this year as will the 500,000-sf Shops at the Galleria and the Triangle, a mixed-use, "New Urbanism: project with 700 apartments and 125,000 sf of specialty retail in the city's central core. The pipeline holds the 780,000-sf Domain, which has local firm, Endeavor Real Estate Group, teaming with Simon for a late 2005 groundbreaking, and the 1.5-million-sf Hill Country Galleria in the preleasing stage. "The envelope is always being pushed in Texas," Weitzman says. "I've never seen it that it's not being pushed." But the amount of development isn't cause for alarm because the bulk of the rising space is preleased. And, he adds, the occupancies of each metro are clear signals that there's no reason for a red flag to rise. Whether it's Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Austin or San Antonio, Weitzman says "the new blood of the market" is keeping all markets dynamic. "When you see really good restaurants from New York come here, you've got to take notice," he stresses. "They are nice touches. It says you're arriving."
  23. Another topic on old airports got me interested in this one. I used to know where there was an old Houston map online showing this small airfield located along Holmes Rd near Sunnyside. Now, I can't find the link to the map, or remember the name of the field. I believe it sounded like it was named after a female person. I asked someone about it on an aviation forum a few years back, and according to them, it was the "colored" air field in Houston. I think it closed down in the 50s or 60s, and I don't think any trace of it exists since 288 goes right over Holmes Rd. where it was. Does this airport description ring a bell for anyone?
  24. Hey folks I really enjoy reading this forum. I was curious if anyone had any info on the SH 288 Corridor Feasibility Study that DOT began in 2003. Brian
  25. The Houston Fire Department will be building a new fire station at Highway 288 and Reed Road, Houston City Council Member Wanda Adams announced Tuesday. The City will break ground for construction Thursday. "This new fire station is in keeping with my commitment to the safety of District D residents," Council Member Adams said. "Anyone who has been in an emergency knows that every second counts, and with this new station, South Houston residents will see marked improvements in the City's response times." The new station, Station 24, will serve an area that has long had a gap in service. It will not only improve response times in the areas served by the new station, it will also improve response times at nearby stations, which will no longer need to respond to emergencies in the new station's area. Station 24, which will house one fire engine and one medic unit, has been on the Fire Department's five-year plan since 1991. It will be built with $5 million from a Community Development Block Grant. Construction is scheduled to be completed in October 2010.
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