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This coming week's HBJ has an article about the Houston Ballet. They've purchased a full block downtown for a new headquarters. The block is located between Smith, Congress, Preston, and Louisiana. They sold half the block (Louisiana side) to help fund a new headquarter's building. No real info. was given about the size, but it did say a skybridge would connect the new building to the Wortham Theater. The rendering looks like a 13 to 14 story tower. More Filler is good news! Plus, if this is like their current West Gray location, it will house the ballet academy bringing further new life to downtown.

201158-400-0-1.jpg

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Photolitherland

I know this is an old thread, but the recent houston flickrstream shows a lot of good images of this building, I'd say it was a pretty good design that culminated quite nicely. Downtown Houston, Te

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Maps.live still shows the drive-thru, but it was demolished a few months back. They're using that entire block for parking now.

Cool, I work on that end of town so I'll get to see the progress.

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I saw that they removed the rendering from the article on the site, and it isn't in the print edition either.

One of the other interesting pieces that jumped out at me in the print article was the mention of who purchased the Ballet's current building and land at West Gray & West Bell. Dienna Nelson Augustine Company (a local developer) and Novare Group (an Atlanta based Residential developer) were the buyers, though the Ballet is leasing the present building until May 2010.

Wonder what, if any, future plans are for that piece of land...

Edited by ChannelTwoNews
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This coming week's HBJ has an article about the Houston Ballet. They've purchased a full block downtown for a new headquarters. The block is located between Smith, Congress, Preston, and Louisiana. They sold half the block (Louisiana side) to help fund a new headquarter's building. No real info. was given about the size, but it did say a skybridge would connect the new building to the Wortham Theater. The rendering looks like a 13 to 14 story tower. More Filler is good news! Plus, if this is like their current West Gray location, it will house the ballet academy bringing further new life to downtown.

201158-400-0-1.jpg

I hate it! It looksl like something that should have been built in the 80s in a Houston suburb. When is someone going to design something innovative and fresh for Houston. If this 80s box is only going to be 13 floors, they need to do better than this. If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. Maybe I ought to design the building.

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I hate it! It looksl like something that should have been built in the 80s in a Houston suburb. When is someone going to design something innovative and fresh for Houston. If this 80s box is only going to be 13 floors, they need to do better than this. If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. Maybe I ought to design the building.

:rolleyes:

That more than likely isn't it. The image was removed from the site and wasn't even in the print edition.

Considering they've only begun the attempt to raise money within the inner donors' circle donors for anything new, I doubt the building even has a preliminary design, much less something a bit more elaborate like the aformentioned rendering.

Edited by ChannelTwoNews
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:rolleyes:

That more than likely isn't it. The image was removed from the site and wasn't even in the print edition.

Considering they've only begun the attempt to raise money within the inner donors' circle donors for anything new, I doubt the building even has a preliminary design, much less something a bit more elaborate like the aformentioned rendering.

Plus that rendering looks like it is from around 1984...surely they can come up with something more urban than a building that you'd expect to see in a suburban business park.

Edited by shasta
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Plus that rendering looks like it is from around 1984...surely they can come up with something more urban than a building that you'd expect to see in a suburban business park.

You took the words right from my mouth. I can't say I dislike the design, but for downtown? This is the type of design that I would expect in Greenspoint, or the Energy Corridor or even Sugarland......in 1984. :P

I hope this turns out to not be the design.

Edited by VelvetJ
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This building should have the freedom to be a very innovative or radical design for a number of reasons.

1) It is representing the 'art of dance' which could inspire the art or architecture of the building. Most buildings for the arts are a little more symbolic (museums. theaters, performance venues). The more symbolic the better if the Houston Ballet wants to promote itself as one of the countries best.

2) The ballet is steering the ship since they are the main tenant on this project. Which means they don't have to worry about loosing potential tenants because they pushed the envelope a little too far with the design because they are the majority. Compare this with a speculative office building.

3) This building should reflect the synergy of the theater district and not be a sterile building at the street level.

4) The rendering we've seen. That rendering screams 'bank building' or 'medical offices' but definitely not THE HOUSTON BALLET. The need a connection with the two.

5) They could even break the mold and look to partner up with a developer and design a mix use building with retail or residential units. It has the potential to be a very interesting and creative project. I'm sure they need housing for some of the performers who aren't from Houston....just a thought

OK, I'm sure there are more reasons but I can't think of any right now but of course the amount of funds they raise and secure (or don't raise) will trump of any of this reasoning. Let's hope the don't skimp on the design.

Edited by shasta
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Last I checked, the Houston Ballet is a non-profit organisation. Spectacular buildings cost money. The best way to influence the design of this new building is to help ensure that the ballet has the necessary funds to build something worthy of your praise.

Can we all assume that you guys are contributing to the ballet's building fund to make sure we get a suitably spectacular structure? Shasta? Velvet?

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Last I checked, the Houston Ballet is a non-profit organisation. Spectacular buildings cost money. The best way to influence the design of this new building is to help ensure that the ballet has the necessary funds to build something worthy of your praise.

Can we all assume that you guys are contributing to the ballet's building fund to make sure we get a suitably spectacular structure? Shasta? Velvet?

Lol'd

Maybe I'll go see the Nutcracker again before Xmas.

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This made it into today's Chronicle. Not much new, except to mention that they're trying to lease some space to some of the other Arts organizations who perform in the Theatre District (I'm not sure if that was in the BizJournals article or not).

It's pretty clear from the article that the design is far from finalized. Also, funding seems speculative at this point. I hope it goes forward.

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This made it into today's Chronicle. Not much new, except to mention that they're trying to lease some space to some of the other Arts organizations who perform in the Theatre District (I'm not sure if that was in the BizJournals article or not).

It's pretty clear from the article that the design is far from finalized. Also, funding seems speculative at this point. I hope it goes forward.

For future reference:

Houston Ballet officials have been working with the Houston office of the national architectural firm Gensler for more than a year on the design of the building. The work is still in progress, Conner said.

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So at 120,000 sf, that would make it about 2 stories??

Not quite. A downtown block is slightly more than 60,000 square feet (62,500sf to be exact). The ballet sold half the block to another party. As you no doubt know, few new downtown Houston buildings take up the entire footprint available, so the building's footprint likely would not comprise much more than 20,000 square feet per floor.

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For future reference:

Houston Ballet officials have been working with the Houston office of the national architectural firm Gensler for more than a year on the design of the building. The work is still in progress, Conner said.

Well, if it is Gensler designing the building we are pretty much guaranteed another glass box. Unfortunately, I haven't seen much that they have designed that is very creative. I would love to be wrong. <_<

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Well, if it is Gensler designing the building we are pretty much guaranteed another glass box. Unfortunately, I haven't seen much that they have designed that is very creative. I would love to be wrong. <_<

well if it's gonna be a box, it might as well be a GLASS box ..don't you all think?

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wow.. the ballet must have some coin!.. Are they a non-profit who gets tax exemptions? If so that would at least save 40% off the bottom line..

Could you expound with details about the 40% cost savings for the project if it is a non-profit with particular tax exemptions?

I think the City and a few of our billionaires should toss down some cash to make this building standout.

Although, since no actual performances will occur in the building, that may be a stretch.

Yeah, like the city doesn't have enough it needs to spend $ on that affects most Houstonians. Dan Duncan, Sarofim, Richard Kinder, et cetera give away a lot of money - I'm sure they appreciate your thoughts on what they need to do with their own $.

Not quite. A downtown block is slightly more than 60,000 square feet (62,500sf to be exact). The ballet sold half the block to another party. As you no doubt know, few new downtown Houston buildings take up the entire footprint available, so the building's footprint likely would not comprise much more than 20,000 square feet per floor.

Great info - thanks a lot for that. Would you post something like that in the Development and Real Estate thread so readers who weren't interested in this particular project thread could learn this?

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Yeah, like the city doesn't have enough it needs to spend $ on that affects most Houstonians. Dan Duncan, Sarofim, Richard Kinder, et cetera give away a lot of money - I'm sure they appreciate your thoughts on what they need to do with their own $.

Don't be a ****head, man. I was speaking in ideals.

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  • 3 months later...
There are some additional examples of the new DT Ballet Building on Swamplot today. I must say, I like the designs much better than the one posted here.

the one posted here was some random building in san antonio built in the 80's, i believe... how that became associated w/ the HB building is beyond me

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Two (Apparently) Differing Renderings of Houston Ballet's New Building Downtown:

ballet-glass.jpg

ballet-solid.jpg

(courtesy of Swamplot)

What if, i may be wrong, these are the same building , but are rendered from different views.

Besides it is unlikely that they have two different designs, i mean unless its a contest there should only

be one final design, and even if the architect made 2 designs he wouldnt go public about it.

Seriously when was the last architect that asked our opinion about a project?

But i may be wrong. Also the rendering with the glass part shows a concrete wall, and the

rendering with the concrete(or what ever it is, im not an expert) shows glass. But , my theory

on why the glass isn't portrayed in the same hue is that the 1st rendering is in the sunset..

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What if, i may be wrong, these are the same building , but are rendered from different views.

Besides it is unlikely that they have two different designs, i mean unless its a contest there should only

be one final design, and even if the architect made 2 designs he wouldnt go public about it.

Seriously when was the last architect that asked our opinion about a project?

But i may be wrong. Also the rendering with the glass part shows a concrete wall, and the

rendering with the concrete(or what ever it is, im not an expert) shows glass. But , my theory

on why the glass isn't portrayed in the same hue is that the 1st rendering is in the sunset..

Yeah, I'm not 100% sure about it either. Swamplot speculates that they are different renderings. Giving it a close look, I think, will reveal that the two aren't consistent.

Edited by uhlaw09
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What if, i may be wrong, these are the same building , but are rendered from different views.

Besides it is unlikely that they have two different designs, i mean unless its a contest there should only

be one final design, and even if the architect made 2 designs he wouldnt go public about it.

Seriously when was the last architect that asked our opinion about a project?

But i may be wrong. Also the rendering with the glass part shows a concrete wall, and the

rendering with the concrete(or what ever it is, im not an expert) shows glass. But , my theory

on why the glass isn't portrayed in the same hue is that the 1st rendering is in the sunset..

The top photo is taken of the block from Smith between Preston and Prarie... the left side is on Smith St while the right side is Preston St.

The bottom photo is taken from across Smith st at the park with the circular sidewalk... and you're seeing the Smith side of the bldg.

So the left side of the top photo is the same as what you are seeing in the bottom photo...... so yeah.. I agree that it's 2 completely different design schemes.

I think we would be lucky to have either one though... they're both very nice looking.

Edited by Highway6
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This building looks great and would bring more people into downtown hopefully. I like the top render best. It reminds me of the Bill Clinton Library in Little Rock except that its glass. I hope this gets built, too bad its not taller, but whatever. I still like it. A city needs differing types of architecture and this is a real nice design that will add a lot to the street level on that side of town.

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Very nice. I actually was able to see some preliminary drawings and renderings when I visited the Gensler office a few months back. Sorry, I wasn't able to obtain any "leakable" info. ;)

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Assuming that the skybridge is the same in both renderings, then the renderings are inconsistent.

I like the top one; the bottom looks like a federal courthouse or something.

Not really. The top rendering is looking north up Smith, the bottom one east across Smith.

I like the one on the bottom. The top one looks like a rather unimaginative glass box. The second looks almost like it has a brushed metal facade. In climates like Houston's I'm fascinated by the idea of building with as few outwardly facing windows as possible, which puts me at odds with most of current architecture.

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Not really. The top rendering is looking north up Smith, the bottom one east across Smith.

I like the one on the bottom. The top one looks like a rather unimaginative glass box. The second looks almost like it has a brushed metal facade. In climates like Houston's I'm fascinated by the idea of building with as few outwardly facing windows as possible, which puts me at odds with most of current architecture.

Yes really. I realize the renderings are from different angles. However, if it is the same skybridge in both renderings, then they must be inconsistent, because the facade on Smith in the first rendering (with the sunlight hitting it) is different than the facade on Smith in the second rendering (facing the viewer).

Edited by H-Town Man
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