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Downtown Skyline Update


DaTrain

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

I took several of my own downtown skyline shots from different angles.

First up under Elysian St bridge.

QJXNCT4.jpg

Next from near the Sovereign.

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UHD & MKT trail.

iBmnvez.jpg

Edited by hindesky
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Reddit u/Hijack32 posted this pic of a guy that caught a huge gar fish with the skyline in the background. Others have posted pics of alligators here. I guess that is why the UHD mascot is a gator.

rx5LOhC.jpg

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  • 3 weeks later...
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6 minutes ago, arche_757 said:

This view has changed only a little since 2001!  A shame Ballpark Place never was realized 😂 😂 

Everything in that picture is new since 2001 (except for the building across the street and the defunct square concrete jail)?

Plus all the beautiful additional advertisements in the ballpark. 

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I was half-kidding 😏.  That said, one would have hoped that in the 20+ years since opening there would be 8-10 new residential high rises within that view.  There are not.

I would never consider advertising within the ballpark to be a change to the city scape.

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On 7/2/2021 at 10:46 AM, arche_757 said:

This view has changed only a little since 2001!  A shame Ballpark Place never was realized 😂 😂 

I thought I was the only one that remembered that lol. I tried finding the rendering again a while back with no luck. 

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1 hour ago, hindesky said:

bOw1aws.png

I fully remember. I was worried block 98 was going to be a repeat. It all worked out well. The site occupied by 609 Main advertised a high rise apartment which never happened, but look what is there now.

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Posted (edited)

Is it just me or does downtown seem dead? A lot of the tenants at the Rice Hotel are all gone. Minuti Coffee seems to be the only place aside from the pub around the corner. A lot of the bars have been closing early. Local Foods is still closed. Finn Hall and Understory don’t seem to be running very well either. And just about all of Bayou Place is a desert now. Discovery Green is dead. Just feels like the pandemic sucked all the life out of everything. 

Edited by j_cuevas713
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5 hours ago, j_cuevas713 said:

Is it just me or does downtown seem dead? A lot of the tenants at the Rice Hotel are all gone. Minuti Coffee seems to be the only place aside from the pub around the corner. A lot of the bars have been closing early. Local Foods is still closed. Finn Hall and Understory don’t seem to be running very well either. And just about all of Bayou Place is a desert now. Discovery Green is dead. Just feels like the pandemic sucked all the life out of everything. 

Bayou Place has been dead for at least 5 years now 😂. I'll respectfully disagree with Discovery Green tho, weekends its crazy already and weekdays the scooter rentals keep that place alive. Tbh, our parks have been the fastest things to pop back after the pandemic. Everything else you described is indeed operating at a lower capacity than pre-pandemic.

Having been to Austin two weeks ago and Atlanta for a few days now, I gotta say its kind of a theme. Downtowns and the city area haven't been popping off like they were pre-pandemic. Just give it a bit of time, all economic signs point to people spending money on vacations and travel and food/drink again so we'll be back sooner than later.

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Many of the Mole People are still working remotely all or part of the time, but the beginning of each of the last couple months seems to have brought more people coming back in.  My guess is that we're at ~50 - 60% of the usual commuter population, based on how full the parking garage is.  It's growing, though... we now often have to look before jaywalking, some places are reopening, and there are now lines at some of the more popular lunch places.

Part of the issue with bars and restaurants is that the people who worked there have generally gone on to other jobs, and frequently the pay and conditions are better in the new gig. 

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I also got to thinking about the continued progress downtown. We have 3 residential buildings in progress along with Texas Tower, 1550 on the Green, PostHTX, Frost Town Brewery, Wyatt Square, and Trebly Park. So we still have a lot pending to help bring more people downtown. 

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On 7/2/2021 at 1:13 PM, arche_757 said:

I was half-kidding 😏.  That said, one would have hoped that in the 20+ years since opening there would be 8-10 new residential high rises within that view.  There are not.

I would never consider advertising within the ballpark to be a change to the city scape.

I'm glad that building didn't happen, it would have loomed over the field and blocked off the view of most of the skyline. Instead we got a midrise there that will protect the view of the historic district from the upper levels. True no highrises from that angle, but if you were sitting further down the right field line, you would see 4 new residential highrises in your view (Catalyst, Aris, Brava, Market Square Tower).

 

14 hours ago, j_cuevas713 said:

Is it just me or does downtown seem dead? A lot of the tenants at the Rice Hotel are all gone. Minuti Coffee seems to be the only place aside from the pub around the corner. A lot of the bars have been closing early. Local Foods is still closed. Finn Hall and Understory don’t seem to be running very well either. And just about all of Bayou Place is a desert now. Discovery Green is dead. Just feels like the pandemic sucked all the life out of everything. 

This is a bummer. Does not bode well for the post office redo.

 

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15 hours ago, j_cuevas713 said:

Is it just me or does downtown seem dead? A lot of the tenants at the Rice Hotel are all gone. Minuti Coffee seems to be the only place aside from the pub around the corner. A lot of the bars have been closing early. Local Foods is still closed. Finn Hall and Understory don’t seem to be running very well either. And just about all of Bayou Place is a desert now. Discovery Green is dead. Just feels like the pandemic sucked all the life out of everything. 

Local Foods basically died before the pandemic hit. Their hours never made any sense to me and I thought it was going to be the death of them when they first opened.  Finn Hall has had issues with crap food. Downtown is definitely still slower than it should be by a lot but most of the places that you mentioned have/has more issues that the pandemic just made more obvious.

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Oh, I know!  I was for it at the time because it would be a positive to have any high rise residential tower in downtown - almost regardless of location!  The fact it never came to be did bode well for MMP and the skyline view in the long run; and yes, sitting further East does afford a better view of newer buildings.  The other place @Twinsanity02 mentioned resembled something you would have expected to see in Vegas at a King Arthur themed casino-hotel.  If I am remembering correctly there were some on here that expressed some level of discontent at lone freestanding McDonalds getting demolished to make way for it…?

As for downtown being “dead”… I guess several things are in play.

 1) The pandemic is not over.  People are still getting sick, and only 1/2 are vaccinated, so many are likely hesitant to go and venture out into the world. 2). There are still a lot of people who are working from home I will wager.

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Yeah and people are just now getting back to normal. It’s going to take some time to see the regular businesses back up and running at full strength. The Local Foods isn’t permanently closed. I think they haven’t decided when to reopen just yet. Either way I don’t see downtown slowing down any time soon. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 7/10/2021 at 7:40 PM, twisterhunt said:

Sharing a time lapse of Brava and TX Tower going up since late 2019, viewed from Woodland Heights. Unfortunately the view of 609 Main gets blocked, but it's been fun to watch these two go up at the same time!

Construction Photo_edited.jpg

It is a bummer that TX Tower had to go up so close to 609 Main. It was more of a distinctive addition to the downtown Houston skyline when it wasn't being overshadowed by the Texas Tower. Now it just looks like another hump AKA Penzoil Place Part II.

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I think what @scarface is saying that it would have been better for the skyline -at least from the north approach- if Texas Tower had been built in a location that didn’t completely hide 609 Main.

Conversely, the skyline from the south approach is much more interesting than just a few years ago.

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Agreed @scarface....coming in from the north side the same holds true for Brava, it looks like an extension of Market Square. Fortunately, both buildings make a huge difference on the skyline viewed from the west side! Much more balance to the north of Chase Tower....

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  • 1 month later...
1 hour ago, hindesky said:

Houston reddit/u rush posted this under 1983? Is that metal frame going up the future Heritage tower?

SwIS2GT.jpg

Yes, that's the skeleton of Heritage Plaza. I think this may be a bit later than 1983. Just before Alicia hit in August of that year, the Allied Bank Tower (now Wells Fargo) had almost completed installing the glass, except where the construction elevator had been. It took quite a while to repair the damage (the exterior was a checkerboard of plywood during this process). 
Heritage Plaza was still under construction when Jean Michel Jarre performed "Rendezvous Houston" in April of 1986. A screen had to be mounted to show the projected images. According to Wikipedia, it was completed in 1987. 
I'm guessing this picture dates from circa 1985, not 1983.

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Might it have been summer 1984? Is it possible Heritage Plaza was that far along by that point?  He says that his family left Houston in 1984, and I didn't think he moved back to this country until much later so it seems unlikely it was after 1984. But maybe he's remembering wrong when he moved away, because it doesn't seem likely it would be that far along by even the middle of 1984.  TC Energy Center, Wells Fargo Plaza, 1400 Smith Street, and the JPMorgan Chase Tower are all complete in this photo, but all of those were finished in 1983 so it's really hard to date this, because I can't identify anything other than Heritage Plaza that was completed over the few years following 1983.

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11 hours ago, rechlin said:

Might it have been summer 1984? Is it possible Heritage Plaza was that far along by that point?  He says that his family left Houston in 1984, and I didn't think he moved back to this country until much later so it seems unlikely it was after 1984. But maybe he's remembering wrong when he moved away, because it doesn't seem likely it would be that far along by even the middle of 1984.  TC Energy Center, Wells Fargo Plaza, 1400 Smith Street, and the JPMorgan Chase Tower are all complete in this photo, but all of those were finished in 1983 so it's really hard to date this, because I can't identify anything other than Heritage Plaza that was completed over the few years following 1983.

600 Travis was completed in 1981. As @samagon mentioned, the visible heat plumes off the buildings rooftop HVAC is a feature in cold weather. This is somewhere between December 1984, or as late as mid February of 1985. According to the almanac February 15th was the last big cold front to make the air close to freezing. And it looks like the first big cold front in December 1984 was around the 5th. The rest of the month heats up almost to the 70s, in true Houston fashion. 

Heritage Plaza began construction in 1984, the same year 1600 Smith & 1301 Fannin were completed which both appear freshly in the photo.

If the OP is correct and they left 1984, this was around December 5th, 1984. Why do I care so much about dating this photo? And why did the Almanac get mad at me for refreshing the dates so many times? 

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46 minutes ago, Montrose1100 said:

Why do I care so much about dating this photo?

I ask myself the same question. 
It's a way to test my memory, and my powers of observation and deduction.  And it's fun. 

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1 hour ago, dbigtex56 said:

I ask myself the same question. 
It's a way to test my memory, and my powers of observation and deduction.  And it's fun. 

You and maybe others might enjoy this piece of history on Heritage Plaza. I've never seen a rendering for a previous design, but I think I'll take the pyramid over whatever KPF thinks this is.

Anyway, found it while trying to nail a construction date on the building. 

Edit: And to steer completely off-topic, in the link, it mentions a project on 1212 Main which is what bankrupted the original developer - not this project.

Capture.JPG

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