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Houston Pavilions, now Green Street


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I'm taking one of my girlfriends there after the Ottmar Liebert concert on the 8th. I'm sure she'll love it.

Uh... ? Anyway. The bartender at the HOB says that they are still working out their kinks. We'll see.

MisterX strongly disagrees with your post! we should all stop our complaining b/c hey, at least the parking lots are gone! what an ungrateful lot around here.... but that;s exactly what should ha

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Very true. This is essentially a city-funded project, to go with the city-funded convention center, the city-funded convention hotel, the city-funded basketball arena, the city-funded Main Street Square, and the city-funded Discovery Green. If downtown ever becomes a great place, it will be thanks to no one except the city. Private developers just don't seem to have the b***s.

Please. This thing has $200 million in private financing. Care to hazard a guess as to how much incentive the City threw in, to back up your "city-funded project" statement?

While some of the criticisms here may be valid, some are off the wall. As mentioned before, 150 apartments with perhaps 250 residents won't even keep a 7-11 in business, much less a multi-tenant entertainment and retail complex, such as HP. HP will be, and always has been, dependant on shoppers coming in from outside of downtown to survive and thrive. Not having a couple hundred pretentious yuppies living above my bowling alley will not ruin my bowling experience. We should probably get over our obsession with "mixed use", or at least understand what it is and how it is helpful or useful. If a retail market is located across the street or a block away from an apartment building, what goal of new urbanism has been thwarted? Aren't people still going to walk across the street to purchase their goods?

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I agree with the recent sentiments... HP is only good news for downtown. Yes, it would be cooler if there was a nice condo tower, and if the office tower was 24 stories instead of 12 stories. But hell, Houston is one of the few cities that has a construction boom continuing through the recent financial market disruption. City-wise, we're lucky (thanks to energy/oil).

The City "threw in" an "$8.8 million development grant from the City of Houston, and $5.5 million from Harris County" (Source). So about $14/170 million was funded by local government. I think with the additional tax receipts, and indirect future receipts by promoting new development, this will pay itself off in a few years.

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Very true. This is essentially a city-funded project, to go with the city-funded convention center, the city-funded convention hotel, the city-funded basketball arena, the city-funded Main Street Square, and the city-funded Discovery Green. If downtown ever becomes a great place, it will be thanks to no one except the city. Private developers just don't seem to have the b***s.

Private developers start off with oversized balls, albeit not often lots of cash. It only seems that way to people like yourself because a few million dollars sounds like it ought to be a lot, but in the context of a development of this scale, that doesn't get anybody very far. This means that they've gotta get one or more equity partners on board and then go out to find a loan...which means putting one testicle in a vice and signing over the other as collateral (which in the mean time will be surgically removed and held in escrow).

In this most compromising of situations, developers negotiate with other stakeholders with testicular preservation in mind rather than on the basis of testicular wit...which as it turns out often isn't very good to start with.

The end result is a product of collaboration, sufficiently bland as not to offend any of the stakeholders, but at the same time looking like it was designed by a eunuch.

This explanation holds true with HP, just as it holds true for ma & pa outfits that do custom homes in garrish faux styles. It has nothing to do, really, with what the developer wants and everything to do with what stakeholder require.

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very true. johnny dang anyone?

OMG shut up. im all for new retail but i dont see the Pavillions attracting big names. Gap closed the Highland Village store. maybe they should anchor in DOWNTOWN.

i was going to die when i was at the Galleria, heading to the Starbucks on Level 3, steping out of the elavator i saw that theat small store called "Diamond Domani" i belive had a banner saying Johnny Dang!!! please someone tell me im mistaken. :unsure::angry::wacko:

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Really? Giving away tax incentives -- and not getting the promised result-- doesn't have anything to do with accountability? When yet another project ends up being a mere shadow of its original plan --and doesn't provide the revenue the city anticipated in return for the all goodies--that's not about municipal accountability? Entertaining even more concessions to the developer, at the council level, for a project that hasn't yet delivered a single dime of sales tax revenue--that's not about accountability?

You must not have lived here long, have a bad memory, or don't pay taxes.

And how do you assume to know what I have or haven't said to a councilmember or the mayor's office regarding city-funded projects?

A mere shadow of of its original plan???? Dial it down a notch already. The only thing that was in the original plan that is not being produced is the residential portion. The focus of the city's attention and assistance was on getting more retail in downtown, not on the residential portion of the project. Plain and simple. And that focus appears to have been the appropriate focus, as we have seen a large unsibsidized residential project go up in the same neighborhood. (One Park Place)

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Wow, alot has been talked about since i've been away. Video Screens? Cool. Bring em on!

I don't know what some people's problem is. Houston could really use something that can entice people to come to a certain area. I'm not saying that video screens and lights do it by themselves, but they are attention grabbers. Look at Vegas. I don't think Vegas would be so well known like it is today if it didn't have the attraction of the well-lit up strip.

And i agree with the above statement. The few residential isn't going to make a huge impact on the success of H/P. One Park Place was made available to fall back on. It will probably end up causing spurring up more residential development or conversions. Some of you need to quit trying to hold this city back in yesteryear. Times are changing. For Houston to become a world class like the leaders want, it needs to keep up with the times, not itsef.

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Look at the renderings from post #1, then look at what's been built. That would've been a big deal. This is puny.

How much did the City give the developers of HP, again? That was really the only thing that allowed for so little density to have been built here. Not teetering upon the precipice of death, I myself would have rather just patiently let the properties sit as is until market forces dictated that they be properly (i.e. densely) developed.

Totally agree with this post, but again, it is STILL WAY BETTER than water was sitting there before. I too wish the original plan panned out too. :(

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Would like to see some national retailers lineup on Main Street.

I don't think you'll see much of that as it's still a pain in the ass to shop downtown - epsecially on Main St.

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Times Square NY, NY..hmmm - how many of you have been to Tokyo?? Do you realize that the entire Times Square Area is just a fraction of the size of the entertainment district in Tokyo? I'm wondering if the people in NYC visit Tokyo and then come home and complain about the small area of Times Square? There is always someplace bigger and better.

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I don't think having one tiny little "glamourous", Vegas-like spot will hurt Houston any. Bring on the jumbotrons. Those who object to them have about a trillion other blank, non-flashing walls to look at all over town. With all those other ordinary, non-electric sign fitted buildings everywhere in Houston to keep you happy, I think you nay-sayers can spare one or two (hopefully more) flashy signs for the rest of us to look at when we go DT.

Are jumbotrons tacky? SURE! so what. Just like I said about victory fort up in little d, they are kind of tacky but they DO add an element of excitement. Add a few people into the mix (unlike victory due to that isolated, dead end location) and DT Houston might actually have a little buzz going on after 7pm. Wow, it could change the universe as we know it. Or maybe not. But anyway the lights will make us all feel important for a little while like they did for our buds to the north.

We all know that HP is not going to change Houston into anything that it isn't anytime soon and neither will a bunch of blinking lights. But what's wrong with making the downtown shopping/dining/bowling/entertainment/live music experience a little more special and memorable than going to the 99 cent store, the steak and shake, and the bowlarama out in the burbs? Nothing, that's what!

BTW, those of you spreading that loser mentality crap can point out and cling to all the negatives about HP you want, (future roaming gangs, pain in the butt location, leasing issues, no residential element, whatever city govt concessions had to be made to land HP in the first place, ect) but HP is one of the most special things to happen to DT in decades - as is. Need proof? How many other threads at HAIF made it to 65 pages? HP has already caused a big splash in this city - and it isn't even finished yet.

Edited by Mister X
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What will happen to this thread once Pavilions opens and is no longer "Going Up?" Will it disappear or move to another section? I don't think I've ever paid attention to a thread long enough to see what happens to it once the project it's representing is complete.

Anyways, if this place is having trouble with leasing retail, I imagine "retail" is waiting to see if people will actually come before they decide if they want to open a location at Pavilions or not.

Edited by NewMND
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What will happen to this thread once Pavilions opens and is no longer "Going Up?" Will it disappear or move to another section? I don't think I've ever paid attention to a thread long enough to see what happens to it once the project it's representing is complete.

This vid might explain it. . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBGIQ7ZuuiU

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Look at the renderings from post #1, then look at what's been built. That would've been a big deal. This is puny.

The first rendering in post #1 is of an entirely different project that was envisioned by different players/developers. Has nothing to do with Houston Pavilions. The HP renderings in post #1 show that what is being built is hardly puny compared to what was initially planned. The development that is being built is as pictured in the renderings minus ONLY the residential element (which actually was never all that large anyway).

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Sorry but i doubt the East End will ever be a highly desired part of town. That's unless they decide to move the factories in Pasadena and Baytown further east toward Beaumont. Oh and there's also the pollution from the boats ariving at the Port of Houston.

But how did we drift on topics about oil and retail to the east side? This is about Houston Pavilions and retail for downtown.

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The first rendering in post #1 is of an entirely different project that was envisioned by different players/developers. Has nothing to do with Houston Pavilions. The HP renderings in post #1 show that what is being built is hardly puny compared to what was initially planned. The development that is being built is as pictured in the renderings minus ONLY the residential element (which actually was never all that large anyway).

OK, if not the first, then one of the middle ones. My point being that this is puny, totally out of scale with what ought to have been built there at some later date, and without public subsidy.

One more time: Be polite to other readers - keep it on topic.

...and I don't know what Tierwester is talking about. Nobody has mentioned the East End (which for his information is not inclusive of Pasadena/Deer Park/La Porte/Baytown) for a good long time on this thread.

Perhaps he meant to post this on another thread?

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OK, if not the first, then one of the middle ones. My point being that this is puny, totally out of scale with what ought to have been built there at some later date, and without public subsidy.

Just a thought, but if that is what you meant, maybe that's what you should have said, instead of telling us that it would have been a "big deal" as originally proposed, but is now puny, when, in fact, the only thing missing from the original proposal is a fairly small residential component.

As for your amended "point", in our dreams, of course, downtown Houston will be far too dense for it to make sense to build anything as low-rise as three, or even two stories. But it should be fairly obvious to even the most casual observer, that that day is indeed a few years (decades?) in the future. In the meantime, we still have plenty of surface lots available for more high-rise development.

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Just a thought, but if that is what you meant, maybe that's what you should have said, instead of telling us that it would have been a "big deal" as originally proposed, but is now puny, when, in fact, the only thing missing from the original proposal is a fairly small residential component.

As for your amended "point", in our dreams, of course, downtown Houston will be far too dense for it to make sense to build anything as low-rise as three, or even two stories. But it should be fairly obvious to even the most casual observer, that that day is indeed a few years (decades?) in the future. In the meantime, we still have plenty of surface lots available for more high-rise development.

If I haven't made it sufficiently clear yet to the impatient masses, let me be more succinct:

I DON'T CARE HOW LONG IT TAKES TO BUILD DOWNTOWN THE RIGHT WAY.

If it takes a decade, fine. If it takes my lifetime, fine. If it takes longer than that, fine. I really don't give a ____. What the Pavilions represents is the government-sponsored underutilization of land. It is utterly ridiculous, wasteful, and irresponsible.

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If I haven't made it sufficiently clear yet to the impatient masses, let me be more succinct:

I DON'T CARE HOW LONG IT TAKES TO BUILD DOWNTOWN THE RIGHT WAY.

If it takes a decade, fine. If it takes my lifetime, fine. If it takes longer than that, fine. I really don't give a ____. What the Pavilions represents is the government-sponsored underutilization of land. It is utterly ridiculous, wasteful, and irresponsible.

Just a question, it you don't care if downtown is built right during your lifetime to where you might not be around to see it, why should you care at all? Especially about a puny developement like H/P.

I'm so glad you don't run this town. Houston would be in serious trouble.

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So glad I am one of those individuals who can just be happy and excited for how things are... i am excited about HP... it's better than 3 surface lots... even if it's not going to be great as first thought or have the best tenants to begin w/... it's better than 3 surface lots!! :D

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Just a question, it you don't care if downtown is built right during your lifetime to where you might not be around to see it, why should you care at all? Especially about a puny developement like H/P.

I'm so glad you don't run this town. Houston would be in serious trouble.

Because "RIGHT" isn't a destination. "RIGHT" is a journey.

This is why I'm not much of a fan of master planned communities that try to build idealized town centers from scratch which are intended as permanent and that are considered in the moment to be the end-all-be-all of quality real estate. They're inflexible, presumptuous, not at all adaptable to future needs. And on top of it all, they're fashionably boring.

An urban core should not be planned. It should be totally adaptable, dynamic, chaotic. The only ingredient in its recipe ought to be 'opportunity', with eyes set upon the future, and not upon cheap imitations of the past.

Another thing, I find it outright insulting that government would subsidize the development of retail which caters to wealthy people. And on top of that, that the city is so ready and willing to subsidize the development of nice new retail downtown but nothing at all anywhere near where I live. In my view, government ought to equitably distribute its subsidy among neighborhoods and business centers so as to best serve the residents (or not subsidize at all)--instead, they invest disproportionate gobs of capital downtown to best serve visitors. But I don't care about visitors; those that do have serious self esteem issues and are a contributing factor to our city's lack of coolness.

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So glad I am one of those individuals who can just be happy and excited for how things are... i am excited about HP... it's better than 3 surface lots... even if it's not going to be great as first thought or have the best tenants to begin w/... it's better than 3 surface lots!! :D

Surface lots are an opportunity to grow. These prime lots have been underdeveloped, and thus have undercut that opportunity.

What would've gone there had the project failed and those lots were still available in today's office market? Just think of all the highrises, all the new employees brought downtown.

Heck, even Bill Denton remarked last year that if they had known things were going to improve this much, they would've dramatically expanded their office component....and things have gotten even better since then. Had the City just left this alone, to die like it should've in the first place, we could've gotten something better.

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Another thing, I find it outright insulting that government would subsidize the development of retail which caters to wealthy people. And on top of that, that the city is so ready and willing to subsidize the development of nice new retail downtown but nothing at all anywhere near where I live. In my view, government ought to equitably distribute its subsidy among neighborhoods and business centers so as to best serve the residents (or not subsidize at all)--instead, they invest disproportionate gobs of capital downtown to best serve visitors. But I don't care about visitors; those that do have serious self esteem issues and are a contributing factor to our city's lack of coolness.

Amen. We have plenty of malls. If a downtown mall makes economic sense then there's no need for a subsidy.

Edited by memebag
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Because "RIGHT" isn't a destination. "RIGHT" is a journey.

This is why I'm not much of a fan of master planned communities that try to build idealized town centers from scratch which are intended as permanent and that are considered in the moment to be the end-all-be-all of quality real estate. They're inflexible, presumptuous, not at all adaptable to future needs. And on top of it all, they're fashionably boring.

An urban core should not be planned. It should be totally adaptable, dynamic, chaotic. The only ingredient in its recipe ought to be 'opportunity', with eyes set upon the future, and not upon cheap imitations of the past.

Another thing, I find it outright insulting that government would subsidize the development of retail which caters to wealthy people. And on top of that, that the city is so ready and willing to subsidize the development of nice new retail downtown but nothing at all anywhere near where I live. In my view, government ought to equitably distribute its subsidy among neighborhoods and business centers so as to best serve the residents (or not subsidize at all)--instead, they invest disproportionate gobs of capital downtown to best serve visitors. But I don't care about visitors; those that do have serious self esteem issues and are a contributing factor to our city's lack of coolness.

I can appreciate your passion on this subject, but I think that its worth considering how similar projects have played out in other cities.

Early on, I saw a lot of comparison between this project and Denver Pavilions. I have not been to that development, but based on what I see from their website it seems to be a reasonably similar project in its scope and tenants. Denver is considered to have built their downtown the right way and has the tourism and convention numbers to back it up.

I would also compare this to the Metreon Center in San Francisco. I happen to think that center is completely underwhelming as a project, but it helped to revitalize SOMA.

I agree that something of greater scope would have been desirable, but I still see this as a positive.

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Amen. We have plenty of malls. If a downtown mall makes economic sense then there's no need for s subsidy.

memebag, You really don't know the economic impact a retail mall can do for the CBD? Conventions?

Edited by Subdude
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Darn you, I was just about to quote this post and provide another link, saying This vid explains it even better. Then I happened to click on your video, only to see that it was the very video I was going to provide.Darn you.

Bow down.

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If there is such a huge demand and/or potential for higher end developments along main their is about a dozen other surface lots that can disappear. I guess next time a developer has a 100 million + to invest DT they better ask "The Niche" or "memebag" for advice first.

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memebag, You really don't know the economic impact a retail mall can do for the CBD? Conventions?

Dang it, I was going to use that quote in my sig!

(Google says that word is used 191 times on this forum, btw.)

I think I know the economic impact of a retail mall. Why does that mean taxes should subsidize this one?

If the mall will make money, then why does it need a subsidy?

If the mall won't make money, then why are we subsidizing a mall that can't show a profit?

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If there is such a huge demand and/or potential for higher end developments along main their is about a dozen other surface lots that can disappear. I guess next time a developer has a 100 million + to invest DT they better ask "The Niche" or "memebag" for advice first.

:lol:

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Surface lots are an opportunity to grow. These prime lots have been underdeveloped, and thus have undercut that opportunity.

What would've gone there had the project failed and those lots were still available in today's office market? Just think of all the highrises, all the new employees brought downtown.

Heck, even Bill Denton remarked last year that if they had known things were going to improve this much, they would've dramatically expanded their office component....and things have gotten even better since then. Had the City just left this alone, to die like it should've in the first place, we could've gotten something better.

I doubt it. It would have been another reason for people to whine and dog it ( no matter what that project would have been) just like this HP project is being dogged now. I mean you are never going to make everybody happy. Unhappy people always find something to bi*ch about. Nothing is ever good enough, and then they complain when nothing is ever done, go figure. Coulda, woulda, shoulda. Time to take action and stop talking, that's what the city has done. Hey it's like a guy or a girl always waiting for something better, in the end they end up by themselves, with no one, or wishing they hadn't passed up on someone earlier that should have been appreciated. This is a good start (HP) and i have a feeling it will spur other developements. The subsidizing has other intangibles. If it spurs other projects, it will raise value and pay for it self.

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I doubt it. It would have been another reason for people to whine and dog it ( no matter what that project would have been) just like this HP project is being dogged now. I mean you are never going to make everybody happy. Unhappy people always find something to bi*ch about. Nothing is ever good enough, and then they complain when nothing is ever done, go figure. Coulda, woulda, shoulda. Time to take action and stop talking, that's what the city has done. Hey it's like a guy or a girl always waiting for something better, in the end they end up by themselves, with no one, or wishing they hadn't passed up on someone earlier that should have been appreciated. This is a good start (HP) and i have a feeling it will spur other developements. The subsidizing has other intangibles. If it spurs other projects, it will raise value and pay for it self.

Well, if it's true that these new towers are going up will have retail on the first floor, the retail we want is coming, just not in mass like HP.

So in a way, niche could be right. A couple huge towers could have been built there with retail on the bottom and the only thing missing from each might be an extra floor of retail/entertainment. It's just that HP gives us what we want in one chunk, but it's not necessarily by demand (subsidy).

The towers with retail are coming, slowly but surely.

But I'm happy with HP, but I see what niche is saying.

Edited by lockmat
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Who is this "we" that wants more retail? Am I the only citizen who has way more retail than I need?

Meme, is that you on my lawn?

Good grief. Niche is right. I give up arguing. It's about density, and how much the City is stupidly subsidizing land that's not seeing its best use.

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Who is this "we" that wants more retail? Am I the only citizen who has way more retail than I need?

It's not that meme bag just doesn't get it, it's just that he likes to argue. Unfortunately, that is starting to make this forum kind of annoying, for me at least...

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It's not that meme bag just doesn't get it, it's just that he likes to argue. Unfortunately, that is starting to make this forum kind of annoying, for me at least...

Was it different before I arrived? Did everyone here belong to the "we" that wants more retail?

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Who is this "we" that wants more retail? Am I the only citizen who has way more retail than I need?

A lot of people want more retail downtown. It encourages street life. In the case of HP, it gives convention visitors something to do.

It's not that meme bag just doesn't get it, it's just that he likes to argue. Unfortunately, that is starting to make this forum kind of annoying, for me at least...

Arguing makes this forum annoying? Why should arguing make this forum annoying? Do you have a problem with arguing? Or do you have a problem with things that are annoying?

Please cite logical reasons why arguing would make this forum more annoying for you.

;)

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Who is this "we" that wants more retail? Am I the only citizen who has way more retail than I need?

We all have enough retail to fill our NEED, but a fair amount of us WANT more retail options DT.

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