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hmmm, first i think, that's nice.  the generators at food trucks are so noisy.  seems like a great idea provide solar power so that spending time at this food park will be more pleasant.  but then i stop and wonder--they're going to build out all of this solar and battery infrastructure.  wouldn't it make more sense to just supply power from the electric grid.  would require far less of an upfront investment.  you could source 100% of the electricity from renewable sources.  i would argue that not buying the new panels and batteries makes it a more environmentally mindful option.  maybe use some of the money you save to feed the homeless population in this area.  but a power line it doesn't "look" like the more environmentally mindful option...

 

...i don't know that i would call this innovation.

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As someone who works at Ion, the only part about this sucks and appears to have no planned solution - walking from the parking garage to Ion in the rain. It's a problem with the current temp lot, and the garage will be even a block farther away. It also sucks having to cross a busy Fannin twice a day at rush hour. I get there will be a whole campus this garage is servicing, but having it so inconveniently located to your flagship building is kind of a bummer.

Ah well, at least now that things are starting to cool down a bit I can go back to biking.

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5 hours ago, Andrew Ewert said:

As someone who works at Ion, the only part about this sucks and appears to have no planned solution - walking from the parking garage to Ion in the rain. It's a problem with the current temp lot, and the garage will be even a block farther away. It also sucks having to cross a busy Fannin twice a day at rush hour. I get there will be a whole campus this garage is servicing, but having it so inconveniently located to your flagship building is kind of a bummer.

Ah well, at least now that things are starting to cool down a bit I can go back to biking.

At some point I wouldn't be surprised to see them put in a HAWK pedestrian crossing somewhere. Or add a light for the street between the apartment and the garage. The light is a little problematic because its so close to the light by Wheeler. Fanin, as much as I love it for letting me gun it down the street (its my street of choice for leaving Midtown/DT), has a speed problem that I'm sure the Ion group will eventually look to fixing, which should help you when you leave the garage and walk. Can't have high end cars leaving that garage during a special event just to get smashed by an Altima going 55.

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8 hours ago, X.R. said:

At some point I wouldn't be surprised to see them put in a HAWK pedestrian crossing somewhere. Or add a light for the street between the apartment and the garage. The light is a little problematic because its so close to the light by Wheeler. Fanin, as much as I love it for letting me gun it down the street (its my street of choice for leaving Midtown/DT), has a speed problem that I'm sure the Ion group will eventually look to fixing, which should help you when you leave the garage and walk. Can't have high end cars leaving that garage during a special event just to get smashed by an Altima going 55.

I'm sorry, but are you suggesting that highway-style "street" designs are incompatible with dense urban districts??? How dare you. 

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I'm always a fan of high-end cars getting smashed, but pedestrian safety needs to be a priority here. Midtown as a whole would benefit from a light or stop signs at *every* intersection. Nearly every intersection downtown is signalized, and it really helps a lot despite massively wide streets.

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16 hours ago, X.R. said:

At some point I wouldn't be surprised to see them put in a HAWK pedestrian crossing somewhere.

There already is one shortly before Wheeler. It's what I currently have to use. As a pedestrian I can tell you it does very little to inspire confidence. HAWK signals are pretty horrible from an information design perspective. Most drivers are only sort of tangentially aware of what they're really supposed to do with them and I've watched people speed through them countless times.

The placement of that HAWK also causes a bunch of problems as it often conflicts with traffic backed up at the Wheeler light, and together with the fact that parking is allowed on Fannin, turns that whole area into a visibility nightmare.

Edited by Andrew Ewert
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1 hour ago, Andrew Ewert said:

There already is one shortly before Wheeler. It's what I currently have to use. As a pedestrian I can tell you it does very little to inspire confidence. HAWK signals are pretty horrible from an information design perspective. Most drivers are only sort of tangentially aware of what they're really supposed to do with them and I've watched people speed through them countless times.

The placement of that HAWK also causes a bunch of problems as it often conflicts with traffic backed up at the Wheeler light, and together with the fact that parking is allowed on Fannin, turns that whole area into a visibility nightmare.

I knew something was there, didn't know that was a hawk signal. I don't think its ever been activated while I've taken Fanin (usually late, late afternoons or weekends). Probably should be a light if I'm being honest, given the speed people pick up on Fanin. The HAWK by the museums have people complaining on reddit/twitter all the time about people not stopping and that's in an area where people do actually walk so cars at least know there are pedestrians in the area. Can't imagine a HAWK on Fanin would actually work.

The museums have a tunnel, thats a cool idea @Sanjorade. Or the street could lose a lane, which, given how much money the Ion is spending and the business it'll generate for the city I'm sure if suggested would happen. 

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5 minutes ago, X.R. said:

I knew something was there, didn't know that was a hawk signal. I don't think its ever been activated while I've taken Fanin (usually late, late afternoons or weekends). Probably should be a light if I'm being honest, given the speed people pick up on Fanin. The HAWK by the museums have people complaining on reddit/twitter all the time about people not stopping and that's in an area where people do actually walk so cars at least know there are pedestrians in the area. Can't imagine a HAWK on Fanin would actually work.

The museums have a tunnel, thats a cool idea @Sanjorade. Or the street could lose a lane, which, given how much money the Ion is spending and the business it'll generate for the city I'm sure if suggested would happen. 

On 8/29/2022 at 5:43 PM, IntheKnowHouston said:

ITCAKG8.jpg

From the renderings it appears that all of blocks through the district will have protected parking lanes on both sides of the street, which would reduce driving lanes to two. Between this traffic-calming feature and increased pedestrian activity, through traffic should slow considerably. Changing the timing of the lights at Cleburne and Wheeler would help as well.

Please no more tunnels.

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4 hours ago, phillip_white said:

Please no more tunnels.

This is the exact type of development that would actually benefit from tunnels. Its large, covers multiple blocks across very busy streets (that will remain busy even if traffic is slowed), and the buildings will probably already have basements, if Ion is any indication. You can still have street facing businesses for people coming off the street. The tunnels are mainly for those that work inside the buildings and commute to the development and park in the garage.

Edited by Big E
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4 hours ago, Big E said:

This is the exact type of development that would actually benefit from tunnels. Its large, covers multiple blocks across very busy streets (that will remain busy even if traffic is slowed), and the buildings will probably already have basements, if Ion is any indication. You can still have street facing businesses for people coming off the street. The tunnels are mainly for those that work inside the buildings and commute to the development and park in the garage.

If that's the case, put the traffic in a tunnel. Seems like that would solve everything. 

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On 6/21/2022 at 11:53 AM, hindesky said:



Same rendering but without the text. It's labeled as the Sears Civic Plaza in the image description. It's also labeled as Ion District Plaza on the Ion District website.

This is part of phase two of the Ion District, slated for delivery in 2023 and 2024.


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Edited by IntheKnowHouston
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On 8/23/2022 at 7:23 AM, IntheKnowHouston said:

A photo of Dock 45 in India is shown on the site as a design inspiration for the look Norcity is possibly aiming for.

Nf7QyjX.jpg
 




In the Ion District retail brochure, there are building models for future phases, including Norcity. The model for Norcity appears to be a structure similar to the inspiration image shared in the above quoted post.

Norcity is the solar-powered food park / container hall coming to the Ion District. It's planned for the 51,924 sf lot at 4001 Main St. Norcity is planned for phase three. Estimated delivery for phase three is 2027.

This is the latest food hall concept from Company of Nomads / Nomads Hospitality (Conservatory, Bravery, and Railway Heights Market).



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Edited by IntheKnowHouston
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Second Draught, a craft beer pub at the Ion, opens Monday. The address is 4201 Main St Suite 130.


More from an article published today by Houston Press:


"Come Monday, it'll be all right when the 2,000 square-foot taproom opens as a comfortable watering hole with 18 beer taps and two wines on draft. Guests order at the bar and then find a seat at one of the 66 indoor seats or a spot on the outdoor patio which faces the Ion Plaza."


Regarding food:

"There isn't a kitchen but owners Sarah Pope and Adam Cryer told the Press that there will be a digital system set up for guests to order food from soon-to-open fellow Ion tenants, Late August and Lymbar."


https://www.houstonpress.com/restaurants/cherry-block-debuts-at-stomping-grounds-north-italia-woodlands-soon-14031392

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On 9/8/2022 at 6:32 AM, IntheKnowHouston said:

In the most recent Ion District retail brochure (updated in July), there are building models for future phases. 


The Ion District is a 16-acre, multi-phase district. It will consist of 3-5 million square feet of retail, commercial office, multi-family residential and hospitality  to be built in partnership with best in class developers over the next 10 years. 

 

  • Phase 1 (2021/2022) 
  • Phase 2 (2023/2024) 
  • Phase 3 (2027)
  • Phase 4 (2030)


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Phase 3 (2027) 
Phase 4 (2030) 

Does anyone know how much of the phase 2 is funded yet? The massive garage they're working on certainly seems ambitious. But what are chances of this actually coming together on this timetable?

If this is more than just a paper project, I can see this spurring a lot more residential development in midtown, which is a happy thought.

Edited by aachor
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10 hours ago, aachor said:

Does anyone know how much of the phase 2 is funded yet? The massive garage they're working on certainly seems ambitious. But what are chances of this actually coming together on this timetable?

If this is more than just a paper project, I can see this spurring a lot more residential development in midtown, which is a happy thought.

The developer, Rice Management Company, control's Rice University's $8B endowment. They're not wanting for funding.

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My understanding is that the plan is to have most of the buildings privately developed under the project urban design guidelines. And last I saw of that, the guidelines are largely aimed at the sidewalk environment (the first 3 floors or so of the building). I don't believe that there are minimum or maximum height requirements (but I'm not sure about that).

And I'm very confident that the endowment will not be throwing around a lot more money for Ion. There has been a significant start up investment and the project will eventually have to start rewarding the University.

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