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Astrodome To Be Turned Into A Movie Studio


citykid09

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I think that it could not only be useful for movies, but also in TV show production. Maybe some shows with live studio audiences. It could be an all around attraction.

Also, the Austin area had studio city going up. Its supposed to be like what Hollywood is to Los Angeles. Does anyone know how that project is going? And One more thing, I think the Dallas area has some sound stage studios, Barney and several other shows are taped there.

I think that Austin studio got canceled, and it moved to SA (where construction hasn't started).

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If you watch tv, you know that the majority of new shows are cheap- to- produce reality shows, CG animation, and other stuff that studios can market without investing huge money, time or equipment in. In order to make a giant sound stage and production facility viable, you have to keep it filled. You also have to attract high-budget production. I don't believe that Judge Judy, an occasional Scary Movie franchise shoot, and Bret Michaels' newest VH1 embarrasment will cover the costs to the county of giving away tax incentives for a facility that is half-filled half the time. I know it sounds really shiny and cool, sort of like jumbotrons downtown, but none of the people promoting the studio have provided any reliable data which says we have a market for this. Again--what are are Louisiana's numbers looking like? They did a very similar thing in Shreveport. They're also a few years in on it. Either they are making money, or not. I'm not saying it's apples to apples, but it would be instructive.

Now, The Astrodome Grow House, on the other hand, would be an all-around attraction. Do you know that other major cities do tiny, simple things like install rooftop vegetable gardens on their municipal buildings, and get press?? Do you know why Houston has hit some recent 'best of' lists? Discovery Green. Green space. Emphasis on green. An 'attraction' is kids coming in from all over the region on field trips to learn about ecological science. Turning a huge, crumbling urban arena bathed in a sea of concrete into a ag-based business in the 4th largest city in the country -- in an oil town nonetheless -- would be an attraction. Foreigners would eat it up. Taping Barney is not an attraction. Sorry.

Not picking on you, City Kid, but I smell amatuer hour with the people promoting this movie studio deal. And I'm completely serious about Dome Grow House. I think it's viable.

I like the green house idea, but Im sticking with the movie studio.

How about turning it into a self sustaining city?

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Now, The Astrodome Grow House, on the other hand, would be an all-around attraction. Do you know that other major cities do tiny, simple things like install rooftop vegetable gardens on their municipal buildings, and get press?? Do you know why Houston has hit some recent 'best of' lists? Discovery Green. Green space. Emphasis on green. An 'attraction' is kids coming in from all over the region on field trips to learn about ecological science. Turning a huge, crumbling urban arena bathed in a sea of concrete into a ag-based business in the 4th largest city in the country -- in an oil town nonetheless -- would be an attraction. Foreigners would eat it up.

I'm not going to bother knocking your idea as one without merit...because frankly, I can't. There's no examples to cite of how a project of similar scope to what you propose has either succeeded or failed. ...so I'm not going to bother with that route.

If a gargantuan grow house is that appealing, why not do it efficiently and construct a 1+ million-square-foot purpose-built facility on cheap land in the suburbs from scratch for $35 per square foot? The opportunity cost of doing it in the Astrodome as compared to a newer, more efficient purpose-built, less expensive facility is ridiculously large. Granted, the symbolism of making it out of the Astrodome would play a significant role in generating press, however that is true of any use for the structure.

Actually, I suspect that no matter what we do with the structure, the moment we do anything, it will create press about Houston. And unless we tear it down, it'll be positive press.

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Whatever it is, it should be a big idea, just like the dome itself was. Something like crunches idea.

I just don't want people to go there and have thoughts of like, "Yeah, this used to be the 8th wonder of the world, the Astrodome, and now it's just _____ [/shrugs]"

Edited by lockmat
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Austin was the perfect city for that.

Yeah but unfortunaetly, Austin City Council rejected the proposal. It would of been a mixed-use development with a 1.5million sq. ft. studio at the cost of 1.5 billion.

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...ght=Villa+Muse

My hope in the Astrodome Studios concept is fading, due to the numerous proposals planned for the Astrodome. Astrodome Studios would diversify Houston's economy. Having a large studio would attract artistic type of professionals, directors, actors, set- designers, film makers, producers, writers, etc. plus it would open the door for Houstonians who may want to enter that field and possibly create thousand of Jobs. More money for Harris County and possibly surronding counties. New opportunities for UH, Rice and TSU to teach these trades. It would also possibly bring more developmnt to the Houston metro area. Last but not least, this movie studio would not only help Houston, but the state of Texas as well. Too bad Judge Ed Emmet is not thinking clearly of the pros a movie studio would bring to Houston, Haris Couny and Texas.

Well..... Houston is Houston. :( Lets see what happens.

Edited by UpuPUp!
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Well..... Houston is Houston. :( Lets see what happens.

Don't worry, kid! ;) There's still time for the Astrodome to be used to a better end. Houston should showcase it's history of engineering and technical know-how while contributing to sustainability. The world doesn't need more actors or film crews. It needs solutions that meet the demands of growth and stressed resources. A movie studio is not thinking big. It's not fixing problems. It's very late 90s. Taking out the formica and replacing it with granite countertops. Yawn. No one is thinking big or originally here with the movie studio idea. (Nor can anyone show any credible numbers backing up claims that it would create jobs, or that they could even keep the building leased. )

It's time we kept the spirit of the space age alive. Astrodome Grows!...... Nothing a little asbestos abatement won't fix) :)

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Yeah but unfortunaetly, Austin City Council rejected the proposal. It would of been a mixed-use development with a 1.5million sq. ft. studio at the cost of 1.5 billion.

Could it be that Austin rejected it because they acted with some semblance of fiduciary duty, and decided against committing taxpayer money to a project that was judged a poor ROI?

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  • 1 month later...

www.thedomemovie.com

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?se...cal&id=6834828

Studio plans Astrodome documentary Wednesday, May 27, 2009 | 3:47 PM HOUSTON

(KTRK) -- The company that wants to use the Astrodome as a movie studio has announced their first film project.

Astrodome Studios Productions, a division of Astrodome Studios, the proposed motion picture production facility for the re-use of the Houston Astrodome, has partnered with documentarians Chip Rives and David Karabinas to produce the company's first project, The Dome, a history of the legendary Eighth Wonder of the World itself. A trailer of the work, featuring President George H.W. Bush, Dan Pastorini, Bum Phillips, Nolan Ryan, Dene Hofheinz Anton and former mayor Fred Hofheinz, will debut Thursday evening, May 28, 6:30 PM, at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, 5216 Montrose. The filmmakers will be in attendance.

Astrodome Studios development partner J.L. Trahan was extremely supportive of the company's choice for their first film saying, "When astrodome studios founders Elise Hendrix and Cynthia Neely introduced me to The Dome movie creators, Chip Rives and David Karabinas, I couldn't have been more pleased. Like everyone that sees their trailer, I was moved emotionally and knew we would all work well together. It's a perfect match of like-minded teams working together to not only tell an important story, but also to bring about the best outcome for Harris County taxpayers and their beloved Astrodome."

Rives and Karabinas have won more than 20 Emmy Awards for their documentaries about many of sport's most amazing athletes. Both native Houstonians, currently residing in Austin, Rives and Karabinas have a profound admiration for the building that changed the worlds of both architecture and sports forever. In an age of monolithic retractable roofs, corporate luxury boxes, and multi-story high-definition "Godzilla-tron" screens, it's easy to forget where it all began. The producers and Astrodome Studios Productions will refresh those memories in grand style with "The Dome." To view the trailer on-line visit www.thedomemovie.com.

The May 28 screening of the trailer at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston is part of an exhibition featuring two rarely seen documentaries about the Astrodome. Artist/curator Andrea Grover will present Geoff Winningham's 1975 film "The Pleasures of this Stately Dome" and the 1974 documentary "The Lord of the Universe," which chronicles the guru Maharaj Ji's appearance at the Dome and the much-hyped event, Millennium '73.

Astrodome Studios is a concept to transform the Houston Astrodome into a state-of-the-art film/video/sound production facility that would establish a center of commerce for the creation of moving image products in Texas. The project has been officially presented to Harris County officials and is under review.

Currently, Texas does not have a mega-sized soundstage facility. New legislation was recently passed that will be driving more production business to the state. If approved, the Dome's famous ball field would become the world's largest soundstage, an indoor "back lot," vast enough to build sets of whole towns unaffected by weather or time of day or night. Former concourse areas would be used for smaller soundstages, production offices, and offer tenant space to companies with industry-related services and equipment. Divisions of Astrodome Studios include Astrodome Studios Productions and museums for the histories of the Texas film industry and the Astrodome.

Edited by UpuPUp!
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More info

FORMAL PROPOSAL SUBMITTED TO COUNTY OFFICIALS

Astrodome Studios partners met with representatives of the Harris County Sports and Convention Corporation (HCSCC) Thursday, May 7th, to present their official response to the County

Edited by UpuPUp!
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  • 1 month later...
The Astrodome has served as a backdrop in a several major motion pictures. But it's about to play the starring role."The Dome" is a documentary film2.gif about the first modern domed stadium, which opened with much fanfare in 1965.

The film is currently in production and should be completed by the end of the year.

***

The documentarians are aligned with another group, trying to convince Harris County to build a set of movie soundstages in the vacant sports stadium.

"If Houston can provide a world-class unmatched facility for filmmakers to come and use," said "The Dome" producer David Karabinas, "there's no reason to think that all that money, all those filmmakers wouldn't come here and use it."

A proposal to turn the Astrodome into a 1200-room hotelmag-glass_10x10.gif and retail outlet failed to take root when financing could not be found.

Meantime, Harris County continues to pay the note on the dome. The debt currently stands at $19.3 million and is scheduled to be paid off in August of 2012.

http://www.myfoxhouston.com/dpp/entertainment/090713_astrodome_documentary

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  • 4 weeks later...
Hollywood at Home in the Dome

By Kim Hogstrom

Updated: 08.11.09

With a strong background in the production business, these two entrepreneurs have assembled a team of specialists and investors they say are prepared to save the Dome — facade, field, and all — by converting the space into a Hollywood-style movie studio.

Working with the Irvine Team, the same design and construction company renowned for the conversion of the Compaq Center into Lakewood Church, plans have been rendered for the new “Astrodome Studios.” Under this umbrella, the facility would host a massive sound stage, recording studios, two museums and movie industry-related tenants, all under one giant roof.

The plan calls for the conversion of the 600,000-square-feet of old concourse space surrounding the field into office space to be leased to production support companies and offering the equivalent of about an 18-story office building.

The ball field in the Dome would act as the indoor sound stage. This will allow for large-scale, round-the-clock, environmentally controlled motion picture production, saving companies time and money over outdoor shoots.

It’s a fun idea, but do the taxpayers win?

“The economic impact that a major production facility has on its community is mind-boggling,” Neely states.

“The average production budget of a movie is $53 million. The amount of money left behind in the community is around 1/3 of the budget. That’s $17 million for everything under the sun — from car rentals, hotels and restaurants, to hardware stores. If you sell a product or a service, chances are someone in the production company is going to need it.”

Neely also reminds us the Texas Legislature recently passed three bills providing financial incentives for the industry. These new incentives are designed to seduce movie business away from other states such as Louisiana and New Mexico, which are reportedly making a killing in movie production, to Texas.

“Over the next three years,” Neely said, “by capturing only 20 percent of the business generated by the new incentives, Harris County could experience more than $.5 billion in out-of-state money injected into our economy. And if we don’t build a major studio, Dallas or Austin will!”

Neely’s sense of urgency is palpable.

Can it really work? National Emmy-Award-winner Allen Morris is a long-time member of the Texas production community. This professional thinks is just might.

“Houston has a lot of talented people who work on the fringes of the industry. We need to make this production facility happen and get this community to work. Astrodome Studios, while ambitious, could be just what we need,” Morris concluded.

Emmett insists that he and the commissioners are keeping their options open.

“There might be another solution.” Emmet said. “The question is this … ‘Does the entire dome have to be just one thing, or can it have multiple uses?’”

Neely and Hendrix have an answer for that too. The flexibility of the studio plan allows for other uses between productions; the space could easily host galas and speaking events. Additionally, some local colleges a have indicated an interest in satellite campuses in the structure.

http://www.hcnonline...2_astrodome.txt

Edited by UpuPUp!
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So turn a former public arena into a private studio, right?

On the face of it my reaction was to say this is a bad idea, but pride is always the last shoe to drop so I think this is really the best choice on the table. My disclosure is that I absolutely loathe vacant buildings, especially significant buildings that make me feel like I'm living in the dark ages and the enlightenment simultaneously as I see Reliant stadium and the Astrodome from the south loop. I wish we had the stuff it takes to make that jump from neglectful inevitability to former spirit of it's construction. It's future is also connected to the former astrowolrd lot, such sad shape these two, like forgotten dreams as a faded background to bulky absorbed newness of the Reliant complex.

Will the people accept the sacrifice of the Astrodome? To learn that if nothing happens and it remains vacant, and eventually demo'd, that finally it may be time to reflect upon having some teeth for local historical preservation laws.

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This is a much better solution than a convention center hotel or casino. This will help spawn an entire industry as well as much needed diversity of talent into the city. Imagine how diverse the economic foundation of Houston will become with one of the largest sound studios in the world in our backyard, you will have Medical, Oil & Gas, Energy and Film Industry within a 5 mile radius.

If the County Commissioners do not see the potential of this idea, then they are on the take with some other private developer.

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I've always thought the Astrodome should be turned into a world class athletic stadium... track & field, cycling, running, skateboarding, tennis, endurance training... whatever..... good for training and conditioning too... one on one training.. all sports.....

... I've just always envisioned skateboarders and cyclists racing up and down the ramps... riding the walls around the curves..... around the upper levels....

Now a world class grow house is a brilliant idea.

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I've always thought the Astrodome should be turned into a world class athletic stadium... track & field, cycling, running, skateboarding, tennis, endurance training... whatever..... good for training and conditioning too... one on one training.. all sports.....

... I've just always envisioned skateboarders and cyclists racing up and down the ramps... riding the walls around the curves..... around the upper levels....

Now a world class grow house is a brilliant idea.

Finally!!! Support for my grow house idea!!

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Finally!!! Support for my grow house idea!!

I mean hell... instead of walking up to the ticket window to buy tickets... you'd walk up and buy an ounce of MILF Weed.

You could even have IRA agents inside the place to make sure all the income taxes are paid and up to date.

And it's close to the Medical Center... patients could take their Cannabis Prescription and pick it up on the way home. Just pull up to the drive thru, scan your bar code on your Cannabis Prescription, and wah-lah...... you get your medication, Global Growhouse USA gets their revenue, the IRS gets their taxes, AETNA gets the patient's claim, and the Insured gets their FSA check in the mail within a week.

Edited by spiderroller
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This is a much better solution than a convention center hotel or casino. This will help spawn an entire industry as well as much needed diversity of talent into the city. Imagine how diverse the economic foundation of Houston will become with one of the largest sound studios in the world in our backyard, you will have Medical, Oil & Gas, Energy and Film Industry within a 5 mile radius.

If the County Commissioners do not see the potential of this idea, then they are on the take with some other private developer.

Yes. Amen!! I agree +1

Thank you for sharing!?!?! unsure.gif

Your Welcome! biggrin.gif

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I mean hell... instead of walking up to the ticket window to buy tickets... you'd walk up and buy an ounce of MILF Weed.

You could even have IRA agents inside the place to make sure all the income taxes are paid and up to date.

And it's close to the Medical Center... patients could take their Cannabis Prescription and pick it up on the way home. Just pull up to the drive thru, scan your bar code on your Cannabis Prescription, and wah-lah...... you get your medication, Global Growhouse USA gets their revenue, the IRS gets their taxes, AETNA gets the patient's claim, and the Insured gets their FSA check in the mail within a week.

How about it being a growhouse... but for small business? Instead of Philip Morris or Minute Maid owning the joint (get it.. 'joint'... lol)....... you and I purchase the Dome.... and sublease it all out to individual growers..... what a boom for new small business.... that way we create a crapload of jobs.... promote competition... and Big Business doesn't control what we get to get lit on (er... what medication we can have...)....

Julio may want to rent out a 20' x 30' space to open his small business.... while Tyrone would like to rent out a 100' x 100' "primo" suite.

And there will be QUALITY CONTROL - any julio can't just come in and plant some dirt weed. If you don't pass muster your lease is revoked and your product burned (or it can be shipped with a tariff to any Louisiana connection).

Wow.. I can really see it now... on Ultimate Houston.com........ "Best Weed".... voted #1 is Romello's Blue Iguana #4.................

Edited by spiderroller
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Just imagine for a moment how many thousands of people said, upon hearing of the proposal for building the Astrodome: "An indoor, air conditioned baseball stadium makes absolutely no sense whatsoever."

I've imagined that. Okay.

Now... just imagine what % of people questioning a stupid idea ended up being right that the idea was stupid?

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why not? what would?

besides a sports team, does anything else make "sense?"

In the sense that the end result provides some sort of utility to the users (in this case people who like the sporting events taking place inside this structure) then the product would make perfect sense. This is because it is what the visitors of this place expect. However, if there occurs something that is not expected, one cannot reasonably be upset that things did not turn out the way they were expected. If they make this a movie studio, I believe it will be a good thing for the local economy and for the movie industry as a whole because now one would not have to rely on the things coming out of Hollywood these days. Clearly, it would also be a good thing because as was demonstrated before (several posts above), diversifying the base industries in any given statistical region, to use a term popularized by the US Census Bureau, would also mean we would be more resilient to downturns in the economy.

For even though we would like to ban together to make this happen, what would it take to get it done? Can we prevent this from going the way of the Ashby Highrise? Surely, we can get this done. :)

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A movie studio makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

how could you think this isn't a good idea? It will create a totally new industry to not only Houston but all of Texas. I'm so sick of cities like Austin and Dallas acting like they're the King cities in Texas. Austin almost had the opportunity to bring film to Texas but if this goes through, it will blow their plans out of the water. Like the article said, if Houston doesn't take up on this, Austin or Dallas will... and believe me they will do it.

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I think the idea of this would not be to blow either Austin or Dallas out of the water, but to work with those cities.

I think we should do both. Work with them at first. And then stab them in the back, gloat and ridicule them when Houston becomes the Hollywood of Texas.

It's the Texas way! There's no room for #2 in this land.

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In the sense that the end result provides some sort of utility to the users (in this case people who like the sporting events taking place inside this structure) then the product would make perfect sense. This is because it is what the visitors of this place expect. However, if there occurs something that is not expected, one cannot reasonably be upset that things did not turn out the way they were expected. If they make this a movie studio, I believe it will be a good thing for the local economy and for the movie industry as a whole because now one would not have to rely on the things coming out of Hollywood these days. Clearly, it would also be a good thing because as was demonstrated before (several posts above), diversifying the base industries in any given statistical region, to use a term popularized by the US Census Bureau, would also mean we would be more resilient to downturns in the economy.

For even though we would like to ban together to make this happen, what would it take to get it done? Can we prevent this from going the way of the Ashby Highrise? Surely, we can get this done. smile.gif

Yea... I'm sure the Hollywood foke would love to come to Houston to film. I mean, the scenery, history and weather in Houston is something every American should experience at some point in their life. Can you imagine Angelina Jolie down here filming a movie... she can take some "getaway time" and head down to the beaches in Galveston.

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Yea... I'm sure the Hollywood foke would love to come to Houston to film. I mean, the scenery, history and weather in Houston is something every American should experience at some point in their life. Can you imagine Angelina Jolie down here filming a movie... she can take some "getaway time" and head down to the beaches in Galveston.

The weather in Houston is perfect -inside the dome. Anyway if Houston is good enough for the rest of the nation to seek their fortunes, it should be good enough for ugly lipped weirdos like Angelina Jolie.

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The weather in Houston is perfect -inside the dome. Anyway if Houston is good enough for the rest of the nation to seek their fortunes, it should be good enough for ugly lipped weirdos like Angelina Jolie.

The only "movie studio" concept that could work out in the Astrodome would be if the porn industry wanted to move from Southern California.

I say we turn it into a Coliseum of sorts... for criminals.... Gladiator Dome.

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Studios will film anywhere that makes sense 1) within the context of the story and 2) where it makes financial sense to do so. I'm not saying this Astrodome plan is a guaranteed success - far from it. However, if Houston can find a way to work with the current film incentive money offered by the state and with the established film industry in Austin, then there is a chance this could be feasible.

Film making is a business and no business every came to Houston for scenery, weather or history. They came to make money.

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The only "movie studio" concept that could work out in the Astrodome would be if the porn industry wanted to move from Southern California.

I say we turn it into a Coliseum of sorts... for criminals.... Gladiator Dome.

Like you can predict the future. You don't know what you are talking about. On the other hand, it wouldn't take a lot of modifications to the Astrodome to make it look like a giant boob. The Astrodome would be a great capitol for the porn industry. They could rename it the Assholedome.

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Like you can predict the future. You don't know what you are talking about. On the other hand, it wouldn't take a lot of modifications to the Astrodome to make it look like a giant boob. The Astrodome would be a great capitol for the porn industry. They could rename it the Assholedome.

I can predict the future as well as those who are predicting movies will be made in the Astrodome.

I say we melt it down to the ground, and call it "art".

Better yet... let's blow up Minute Maid Field and move the 'Stros back to the Astrodome where they belong (as long as I can bring my own food in there).

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I can predict the future as well as those who are predicting movies will be made in the Astrodome.

I predict you will live an extremely empty, dull life with that attitude.

I say we should only melt it down and blow it up if we can round up all the nay sayers, people with no imagination or vision, Houston haters and all the rest of the losers who would try to stop progress from coming to Houston because they are incapable of 'thinking big' or don't have the balls to take a chance on something that really could turn out to be huge for the local economy.

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Like you can predict the future. You don't know what you are talking about. On the other hand, it wouldn't take a lot of modifications to the Astrodome to make it look like a giant boob. The Astrodome would be a great capitol for the porn industry. They could rename it the Assholedome.

Or the Astroglidedome? :o

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I say we should only melt it down and blow it up if we can round up all the nay sayers, people with no imagination or vision, Houston haters and all the rest of the losers who would try to stop progress from coming to Houston because they are incapable of 'thinking big' or don't have the balls to take a chance on something that really could turn out to be huge for the local economy.

I too think the film facility is a bad idea. (see posts 41-61).

I can post a dozen more times on why that is so, but as usual, some people are more attracted by shiny new things than economically viable (but unsexy) thinking. Big Traditional Hollywood is struggling. Why commit future precious tax dollars (in the form of incentive give-aways) to a 20th-century idea like a giant sound studio? Only a small portion of film can afford huge production. TV can afford even less production. The film business will go the way of the record business. And the newspaper business.

A state-of-the-art, indoor agricultural venture is in line with the type of REAL vision that suits Houston. The site around building is already big enough to accommodate operations like processing and shipping. We have nearby technology and ag partners in the universities. I'm willing to bet that a Texas-based retail grocer like HEB would sign on for marketing and distribution.

Stop thinking like someone who wants to consume 'innovation', and start thinking like someone who wants to contribute to the 21st century!

Edited by crunchtastic
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I too think the film facility is a bad idea. (see posts 41-61).

I can post a dozen more times on why that is so, but as usual, some people are more attracted by shiny new things than economically viable (but unsexy) thinking. Big Traditional Hollywood is struggling. Why commit future precious tax dollars (in the form of incentive give-aways) to a 20th-century idea like a giant sound studio? Only a small portion of film can afford huge production. TV can afford even less production. The film business will go the way of the record business. And the newspaper business.

A state-of-the-art, indoor agricultural venture is in line with the type of REAL vision that suits Houston. The site around building is already big enough to accommodate operations like processing and shipping. We have nearby technology and ag partners in the universities. I'm willing to bet that a Texas-based retail grocer like HEB would sign on for marketing and distribution.

Stop thinking like someone who wants to consume 'innovation', and start thinking like someone who wants to contribute to the 21st century!

While your idea is terribly interesting and technologically advanced, if you cannot get on board with wishing and hoping that Hollywood celebrities come to Houston so that we can gawk at them and squeal like little girls when we see them at the Galleria, then you will forever be assigned to that group of Houstonians that "don't care that Houston sucks and is ugly and hot and humid".

Welcome to the club.

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