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Variance Notice 14th/Harvard


heights

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I saw a big variance request notice on the fence of the bungalow on the SE corner of 14th at Harvard. Anyone know what this is about?

I noticed the owners put in a new fence over the past couple of weeks. I believe it sits closer to the street, but I could be wrong.

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I noticed the owners put in a new fence over the past couple of weeks. I believe it sits closer to the street, but I could be wrong.

Don't think you need a variance for that? I thought unless it was over 8 feet or masonry, you don't even need permits.

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Don't think you need a variance for that? I thought unless it was over 8 feet or masonry, you don't even need permits.

Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it!

The 1200, 1500 and 1600 blocks of Harvard have minimum lot size protection, so I would definitely look into it. If it is north of 14th Street, they are probably trying to get a variance on the lot size and/or building line.

Protest it! Protest it! Protest it!

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Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it! Protest it!

The 1200, 1500 and 1600 blocks of Harvard have minimum lot size protection, so I would definitely look into it. If it is north of 14th Street, they are probably trying to get a variance on the lot size and/or building line.

Protest it! Protest it! Protest it!

It's actually on the south side of 14th street and it was lot size that I was worried about, but someone in the know told me that it has to do with a carport they built (without permit I guess).

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When those folks bought the house, they rebuilt the garage and added a carport that covers the driveway. The carport goes all the way to the sidewalk which violates the setback ordinance. They got redtagged by the city but the carport/garage remodel was pretty well complete. They have been steadily cleaning up the property since they bought it. Speculation is that they filed the variance in order to keep the carport.

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When those folks bought the house, they rebuilt the garage and added a carport that covers the driveway. The carport goes all the way to the sidewalk which violates the setback ordinance. They got redtagged by the city but the carport/garage remodel was pretty well complete. They have been steadily cleaning up the property since they bought it. Speculation is that they filed the variance in order to keep the carport.

I personally think carports are ugly and want to have mine removed. Is that something that can be reused or just go to scrap metal? I am willing to give it to anyone that will responsibly and without harm to my property remove it.

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When those folks bought the house, they rebuilt the garage and added a carport that covers the driveway. The carport goes all the way to the sidewalk which violates the setback ordinance. They got redtagged by the city but the carport/garage remodel was pretty well complete. They have been steadily cleaning up the property since they bought it. Speculation is that they filed the variance in order to keep the carport.

Thanks for the info! I walked by it yesterday but didn't even think to read the variance request.

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You've piqued my curiosity so I looked on Houston Planning's website for the variance request. (it's file number 09023786 to the extent you're interested)

It's generally as discussed previously, i.e. Hired a contractor to build or rebuild a carport, contractor didn't pull a permit, without a permit there was not a plan review and the owner was oblivious to the setback requirement, carport gets built/rebuilt in violation of the setback, building gets red tagged, owner gets in a tif with the inspectors, got some more red tags and is now trying to clear it up via variance. Apparently it's the city's fault (according to the variance request).

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You've piqued my curiosity so I looked on Houston Planning's website for the variance request. (it's file number 09023786 to the extent you're interested)

It's generally as discussed previously, i.e. Hired a contractor to build or rebuild a carport, contractor didn't pull a permit, without a permit there was not a plan review and the owner was oblivious to the setback requirement, carport gets built/rebuilt in violation of the setback, building gets red tagged, owner gets in a tif with the inspectors, got some more red tags and is now trying to clear it up via variance. Apparently it's the city's fault (according to the variance request).

By using the permit # you got, I looked at the permit comments and it noted that a citation was issued and scheduled for court. I then plugged the listed citation number into the municipal courts website (you go through the process like you're going to pay a ticket online) and it showed that he not only has fines and court dates outstanding for recent violations but also back to 2007. Look at those fine amounts! Glad I got permits for the work I did on my place (although my old shed did "fall down" during Allison -- but it's not like I didn't TRY to get a demo permit -- they just made it so difficult).

Ticket

(I redacted owner name that was displayed on court website cause I'm not sure of this forum's rules on posting names, but it matches the name on HCAD owner records)

ticket no. ticket date court date court time court no.

N21690523 12/31/2007 06/11/2009 08:00 1

(ERECT/ALTER/REPAIR/MOVE/IMPRO $843.00

FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH A STOP $843.00

1346 HARVARD 08N0708583

N22845331 03/17/2009 10/21/2009 08:00 1

(REMOVE DEFACE) (DESTROY) A PL $370.00

(ERECT/ALTER/REPAIR/MOVE/IMPRO $850.00

(CONST./CAUSE)(DRIVEWAY/SIDEWA $850.00

offense location offense number

1346 HARVARD 09N0267807

Edited by heights
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  • 3 years later...

That's the nicest house on 14th St., carport included.

It looks a 100 times better than the monstrosity they keep building up and ever up across the street.

Or the monstrosity next door to it. Seriously, google streetview 1346 Harvard. Look at the carport that faces 14th Street. Then look at the 2 story garage attached to the house at 1342 Harvard. Tell me which is the eyesore.

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tract house n. One of numerous houses of similar or complementary design constructed on a tract of land.

The futility of it all makes this a very entertaining architectural forum. In a 1920's "tract house" (used loosely) neighborhood that endured decades of ill-enforced deed restrictions, minimal zoning and vast swings in cultural and economic demographics, we now have lively discussions about what is appropriate and allowable for current owners. Twenty years ago I had a full-blown tile business being run out of the next-door garage, grinders and all. Now the current owners want to "save their bungalow", whatever that means, and they are still trying to figure out why nothing grows their backyard. Certain factions backed by radical preservationists want to rewrite this history and force reversion to the orignal real estate marketing concept of the initial developers, like those guys wrote the Constitution or something. Other factions want to maximize capital gains on their investment and others wear their homes as a badges of coolness. And yet others want to clear cut and start over with modern green concepts, sustainable living, convert the alleys into heron flyways.

Have you noticed that original Norhill developed by Varner Realty has these crazy-wide streets and River Oaks esplanades but relatively small 50-foot lots? Perhaps maybe they didn't see the Great Depression around the corner and had to change marketing plans just to move inventory. One generation from now it will all be different, again.

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You are absolutely correct. However, you will never inject reason into the debate. Why? Because the radical preservationists are not that. They are simply radical narcissists. They have arbitrarily picked a couple of decades of the Heights (or Norhill) history and proclaimed, "THIS is the history of the area!" Only 1900 to 1930 counts. There is 80 other years of history to the neighborhood, but you'll never convince them of that. Worse, only their opinion counts. Not only do they know better how to preserve my investment, and make it attractive, they believe that their opinion entitles them to move the government to outlaw my opinion. They are the absolute worst neighbors that one can have, HOA nazis in the middle of the city. Luckily, they are small in number (even though they have a friend in City Hall). Most of us do not have to live next door to them. We simply have to live with the havoc they wreak.

One of them will post here shortly. He will explain why his opinion is superior to ours. Then, once again, my point will be proven.

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Meanwhile, in the real Heights, everything is just fine. Builders are building and renovating, the residential real estate market is thriving, new restaurants are pouring into the Heights at a pace never imagined and every month a few dozen COAs sail through the HAHC. The predicted real estate armegeddon never happened. Opponents of the ordinance are back to floating rumors about what the HAHC might do, deluding themselves into thinking that there is overwhelming opposition to the ordinance and griping on message boards about imaginary preservationists who hold opinions and make arguments that no one has ever made.

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Meanwhile, in the real Heights, everything is just fine. Builders are building and renovating, the residential real estate market is thriving, new restaurants are pouring into the Heights at a pace never imagined and every month a few dozen COAs sail through the HAHC. The predicted real estate armegeddon never happened. Opponents of the ordinance are back to floating rumors about what the HAHC might do, deluding themselves into thinking that there is overwhelming opposition to the ordinance and griping on message boards about imaginary preservationists who hold opinions and make arguments that no one has ever made.

Prove it.

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One of them will post here shortly. He will explain why his opinion is superior to ours.

DING! DING! DING! And we have a winner in Today's Predict What Will Happen Shorty Contest! Your prize is an annotated History and Future of the Heights by Joseph Goebbels, abridged.

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Meanwhile, in the real Heights, everything is just fine. Builders are building and renovating, the residential real estate market is thriving, new restaurants are pouring into the Heights at a pace never imagined

Especially in the areas outside of the Historic Districts. And guess what, we imagined it. This is why I bought in this neighhorhood, to reap the benefits of a rapidly growing/gentrifying neighborhood. I would appreciate it if you and your friends would get your hands out of my cookie jar and stop trying to slow things down.

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The quantity of new construction in the areas outside the Historic District out paces anything I have seen since I moved in 2007. Driving the streets in the Historic District there is relatively little construction/improvement going on.....get even on block outside of the historic district....say on Waverly or Nicholson and you have more homes being built than ever....The ordinance killed new profitable investment, whether or not someone got a COA to change the siding on their well maintained shack or not....The areas outside the ordinance are booming....the people who can afford to eat in the new restaurants are generally purchasing new construction - not a fixed up well maintained 1920's shack.

The shacks are still selling just fine b/c there are still plenty of folks who want a smaller house closer in to the city and the Heights is all they can afford, but they are not appreciating & selling b/c of the ordinance...they are doing so in spite of the ordinance.

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Much to my surprise: some good news! Here is an actual relevant fact - My neighbor across the street just sold his 2-1 bungalow for $270 per square foot. This is in the Heights East district.

My biggest concern about the HD's was that people would not want to buy 2-1 bungalows because they will be forever stuck with a tiny house. This one was only listed for 3 days before it was under contract.

Give it's just one house - but a relevant data point.

Cheers

James

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Much to my surprise: some good news! Here is an actual relevant fact - My neighbor across the street just sold his 2-1 bungalow for $270 per square foot. This is in the Heights East district.

My biggest concern about the HD's was that people would not want to buy 2-1 bungalows because they will be forever stuck with a tiny house. This one was only listed for 3 days before it was under contract.

Give it's just one house - but a relevant data point.

Cheers

James

They aren't forever stuck with a tiny house. But they are limited in how they can expand the house (e.g. - awkward HAHC-approved camelbacks and rear additions). Also, some folks do actually prefer updating smaller homes and keeping a yard rather than building lot-hugging monster homes.

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There is a good chance the buyer was probably also told how "easy" it is to get approval. I feel sorry for those that don't fully grasp what the Historic Districts mean that buy in them. (what do you mean i can't modify my house without approval, my next door neighbor has a brand new 3,000 sq. ft mcvictorian...)

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Prove it.

Already have in another thread. But it is fun to do it. So, here it goes again:

HAHC:

All the meeting minutes are on the web. Look it up and see for yourself.

Currently on the market:

1643 Arlington: 3800 sq ft renovation/addition

1644 Columbia: 3700 sq ft renovation/addition

1519 Arlington: 3400 sq ft new construction

1822 Cortlandt: 3600 sq ft renovation

1522 Columbia: 2900 sq ft renovation/addition

1537 Harvard: 3300 sq ft new construction

444 Harvard: 3600 sq ft new construction

529 Oxford: 3600 sq ft new construction

627 Harvard: 3200 sq ft new construction

604 Cortlandt St.: 3400 sq ft new construction

440 Harvard: 3400 sq ft new construction

602 Cortlandt St.: 3200 sq ft new construction

621 Arlington: 3300 renovation/addition

409 Cortlandt: 3000 sq ft new construction

1019 Arlington: 3200 renovation/addition

1235 Tulane: 2725 sq ft renovation/addition

(also saw Bungalow Revival starting work on Allston on what would have easily been a tear down w/o the ordinance)

All of the above are on the market for $600k and up.

So much for the Heights being reduced to a slum of neglected rental homes.

As Jamesw noted, the bungalows are selling well. I have not see very many move-in ready bungalows on the market for under 300k since the beginning of this year. Prices are back up to where they were before the market crash in 2008.

Sure, the areas outside the districts are getting plenty of new construction. But that new construction is a lot of cruddy patio homes, cheap faux-victorian/New Orleans boxes and the odd monster property line to property line "custom home" that looks like it was built in the wrong neighborhood. In the short run, these areas may see stronger growth (though given the fact that many of the districts are already more built up than the outlying areas, it very well may be that there is no difference in growth). In the long run the districts will have better property values and appreciation because there will be some integrity to the architecture of the neighborhood. Only on message boards do people claim to like the "architectural diversity" of having a spanish mission style house on the same street as 1920s bungalows, patio homes on 2-3000 sq ft lots and a 4400 sq ft monster custom victorian meets gothic meets Italianate thing.

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Sure, the areas outside the districts are getting plenty of new construction. But that new construction is a lot of cruddy patio homes, cheap faux-victorian/New Orleans boxes and the odd monster property line to property line "custom home" that looks like it was built in the wrong neighborhood. In the short run, these areas may see stronger growth (though given the fact that many of the districts are already more built up than the outlying areas, it very well may be that there is no difference in growth). In the long run the districts will have better property values and appreciation because there will be some integrity to the architecture of the neighborhood. Only on message boards do people claim to like the "architectural diversity" of having a spanish mission style house on the same street as 1920s bungalows, patio homes on 2-3000 sq ft lots and a 4400 sq ft monster custom victorian meets gothic meets Italianate thing.

This is your opinion, based on no facts. What is factual is that these "cruddy patio homes, cheap faux-victorian/New Orleans boxes and the odd monster property line to property line "custom home" " are selling at a high price and if they are as bad as you say, that just proves that people are willing to pay for new construction.

All those 3,000+sq. ft homes you so proudly claim are the biggest joke in the entire neighborhood. Sure they are nice (some of them downright amazing and I would love to own) but they are so far from historic or any resemblence to it it is amusing. Essentially you are saying in order to actually get people to buy in the Historic Districts, you have to so dramatically change the house (in the cases you provided most likely tripling in size) just to get people to buy them. Preservation of what? Would have been a tear down??? If the old house accounts for ~33% (most likely much less) of the materials what is the difference?

Any home that is remodelled in a way that more than doubles it's sq. footage should no longer be considered a "contributing" property.

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Silver - stop using logic to arrive at logical conclusions.....What S3MH fails to see is that all of those properties are "for sale" while all but one of the 13 properties that she calls McVics or cheap faux boxes are SOLD (all for between $599,000 and $620,000)....I know, I know, its a tiny distinction, but it is a distinction most builders do care about! I live in a brand new historic home just outside of the historic district. What makes my brand new home historic you say? I reused the survey stakes that were placed in the 20s! Yes - I retained 100% of the original survey stakes!

Every evening I can sit on my front porch and wave hi to my neighbors knowing that I have contributed to the history of the area by not removing or altering them....I mean, ya I did put new ones that do a better job in but I left the old ones there!

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"1643 Arlington: 3800 sq ft renovation/addition"

Did anyone go look at this one on HAR.com? $895,000, and apparently s3mh thinks this is a tasteful redo of a 1925 bungalow. At 3875 square feet, it is now triple the size of the original structure. None of the windows, walls, floor, roof, plumbing, or electrical, lights, front porch, or doors are original.

But, GUESS WHAT? They kept the original 117 siding! Well, kinda. The original 117 siding remains intact on the front of the house, and perhaps 12 down the sides. However, the brand new addition is clad in Hardie. Yes, that's right. s3mh is bragging about a hideous redo with two different kinds of siding on it. No wonder he thinks the HAHC does a good job.

I can't wait to see what his renovation looks like. Please post pice, s3mh. We'd love to see it.

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"1643 Arlington: 3800 sq ft renovation/addition"

Did anyone go look at this one on HAR.com? $895,000, and apparently s3mh thinks this is a tasteful redo of a 1925 bungalow. At 3875 square feet, it is now triple the size of the original structure. None of the windows, walls, floor, roof, plumbing, or electrical, lights, front porch, or doors are original.

But, GUESS WHAT? They kept the original 117 siding! Well, kinda. The original 117 siding remains intact on the front of the house, and perhaps 12 down the sides. However, the brand new addition is clad in Hardie. Yes, that's right. s3mh is bragging about a hideous redo with two different kinds of siding on it. No wonder he thinks the HAHC does a good job.

I can't wait to see what his renovation looks like. Please post pice, s3mh. We'd love to see it.

I like the heavily wooded lot! I bet some of those trees were planted back in 1925. Man that really does look like it's original in a historic neighborhood!

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Currently on the market:

529 Oxford: 3600 sq ft new construction

Be careful with your choice of evidence. You'll only see new construction at 529 Oxford if the builder's variance request to tear down the historic garage apartment currently there is approved by the city and the Historic Committee.

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"1643 Arlington: 3800 sq ft renovation/addition"

Did anyone go look at this one on HAR.com? $895,000, and apparently s3mh thinks this is a tasteful redo of a 1925 bungalow. At 3875 square feet, it is now triple the size of the original structure. None of the windows, walls, floor, roof, plumbing, or electrical, lights, front porch, or doors are original.

But, GUESS WHAT? They kept the original 117 siding! Well, kinda. The original 117 siding remains intact on the front of the house, and perhaps 12 down the sides. However, the brand new addition is clad in Hardie. Yes, that's right. s3mh is bragging about a hideous redo with two different kinds of siding on it. No wonder he thinks the HAHC does a good job.

I can't wait to see what his renovation looks like. Please post pice, s3mh. We'd love to see it.

Of course you now change the subject because I have more than proven my prior statement that real estate market in the Heights is doing just fine under the ordinance despite the idiotic predictions of slums, diving property values and mass exodus by the anti-ordinance zealots.

I never said that HAHC is perfect. You always have to straw man an argument for me when you get beaten down. I would love to see them be more restrictive. But, 1643 Arlington is actually a huge improvement over a demo and new build (just look at the two houses to the north). The original bungalow architecture is well preserved at street level. No preservationist has ever insisted on retaining plumbing, electric, etc. Another straw man argument. The whole point of the commission is to get builders to work with the existing craftsman and victorian architecture instead of tearing down and building new big boxes with all sorts of incompatible architectural elements. So, the HAHC is doing what was intended. And everything is still fine in the Heights real estate market.

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S3MH, how about if I want to live in the Heights, but don't like bungalow architecture? Why shouldn't I be able to tear down the ugly bungalow, and build something pleasing to me? Like the two houses North of 1643 Arlington. Those are great houses, and I'm sure the owners are very happy with them. And really, as long as the owners are happy, why would you care what the houses look like?

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Of course you now change the subject because I have more than proven my prior statement that real estate market in the Heights is doing just fine under the ordinance despite the idiotic predictions of slums, diving property values and mass exodus by the anti-ordinance zealots.

I never said that HAHC is perfect. You always have to straw man an argument for me when you get beaten down. I would love to see them be more restrictive. But, 1643 Arlington is actually a huge improvement over a demo and new build (just look at the two houses to the north). The original bungalow architecture is well preserved at street level. No preservationist has ever insisted on retaining plumbing, electric, etc. Another straw man argument. The whole point of the commission is to get builders to work with the existing craftsman and victorian architecture instead of tearing down and building new big boxes with all sorts of incompatible architectural elements. So, the HAHC is doing what was intended. And everything is still fine in the Heights real estate market.

None of what you said is evident in 1643 Arlington. It is not an improvement over the two houses next to it. The materials in those homes at least match. The bungalow architecture is not preserved. Original bungalows did not have concrete and brick porches...at least that one didn't. Besides, at "street level", everyone can still see the mismatched monstrosity behind it. You act as if no one sees the elephant on the lot. I'll be blunt. If that is what you and HAHC prefer, I'll take the new McVics.

And, no, you proved nothing with that list...except your lack of architectural taste. I still look forward to your renovation. It will be a hoot.

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the HAHC is a joke and it needs to be disolved.

The historic ordinance is destroying the historic fabric of the Heights (culture is way more important that architecture). One of the main features that drew me to the heights was the eclectic mix of homes/people. We are still going to have that (despite the ordinance) because of the non historic district areas, but it is going to break up the heights into micro neighborhoods (these already existed, the ordinance will just make them more pronounced. People living in the historic districts will think they are better than those that don't, people living outside of the districts will think they are better than those living in the districts. The pro district people will try to force their agenda down others throats, the anti district people will try to get rid of the districts. That is a lot or neighborhood turmoil caused by an ordinace that was never voted for, majority supported, or clearly explained to what it means (it seems the HAHC is still unclear what is and isn't acceptable).

Why are you such a bad neighbor?

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I've been following this discussion on and off for a little while but haven't seen all the posts. However, there is much more construction going on between Oxford and Harvard south of 11th than between Oxford and Studemont, which isn't in the historic district. If the historic districts are pushing activity away, then there should be a rush of construction in the latter area. There isn't.

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I've been following this discussion on and off for a little while but haven't seen all the posts. However, there is much more construction going on between Oxford and Harvard south of 11th than between Oxford and Studemont, which isn't in the historic district. If the historic districts are pushing activity away, then there should be a rush of construction in the latter area. There isn't.

The area between Oxford and Studemont is much smaller than between Oxford and Harvard. And on the few streets I've walked (near Antidote), they also seem to be fairly built out already. Maybe there's an argument to be made about the cause and effect of the historic district on this area, but i don't think this is evidence of it.

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I live in one, and drive through the other daily. I do not see what NYC Texan2 claims is going on in my neighborhood. For instance, on my street, I can look up and down it from my house and cannot see a single home under construction. In the last year, there has been one remodel of a previously remodeled house, and one new home constructed in a 4 block stretch. I'd hardly call that gangbusters, especially compared to the construction that went around me prior to the historic ordinance shutdown in June 2010.

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Time will tell on property values and activity. But one thing I know for SURE is if living outside the districts means I don't have to stand in front of that collection of self-annointed priests/priestesses and beg for permission to improve my house as best suits me economically and aesthetically, then I am better off. Catch a bad day at the wrong time of the month, er, I mean the week, and you're hosed because there is no rhyme or reason to it. Just watching those videos makes me want to puke. Hiring someone to do it for me makes me want to puke. Going up there my self.....they'd be hauling me off in handcuffs, I'd be screaming for marksmu to come shoot his way in and rescue me.

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I've had a renovation ready to go since last year. It still hasn't started, simply because I refuse to put forth the effort to ask those morons for permission. Eventually, I'll probably do it, but my own small addition to the Heights economy has not occurred, specifically because of the board. And, I am not the only one. Roadblocks to participation lower participation (see the voter ID fight for an explanation). Limiting renovations by this board cannot have a positive effect on property values. When investment goes into a neighborhood, values rise. When it is choked off, values drop (or rise slower). Remember that the person bragging about how bustling things are in the Heights never even lived here when things were really booming. He only moved here at the start of the historic district process. He has nothing to compare it to.

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I've had a renovation ready to go since last year. It still hasn't started, simply because I refuse to put forth the effort to ask those morons for permission. Eventually, I'll probably do it, but my own small addition to the Heights economy has not occurred, specifically because of the board. And, I am not the only one. Roadblocks to participation lower participation (see the voter ID fight for an explanation). Limiting renovations by this board cannot have a positive effect on property values. When investment goes into a neighborhood, values rise. When it is choked off, values drop (or rise slower). Remember that the person bragging about how bustling things are in the Heights never even lived here when things were really booming. He only moved here at the start of the historic district process. He has nothing to compare it to.

I agree with what you have said about the ordinance and the way it is enforced in principal...however the response I actually want to make requires a new thread - as my response to your voter id analogy would be the threadjacking of all threadjackings....much like this thread has devolved into a historic thread ordinance.

Overly cumbersome and restrictive rules definitively lower participation in renovation and new construction. Not only does it lower the participation but it adds significant cost...S3MH, and her ilk, would have you believe the additional costs are negligible, and if the materials and builders who used them were plentiful, she may be right...but they are not. That materials are not plentiful, builders who work with them even less so, and in the end the homeowner who builds/renovates is the one who is stuck with the interest on a construction loan that never ends because they have not gotten the permission or approval from the glorious all knowing HAHC.

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"Definitively"? You can say that regulations like zoning raise costs, but that doesn't change the fact that zoning is used by every master planned community and incorporated suburb in Houston, in addition to every major city in Texas including Beaumont and Galveston. It apparently is effective. The predictability is a huge asset to the community and encourages further development.

There are two houses under construction on the western side of Oxford. There are not any under construction on the eastern side of that street. The two blocks from Oxford to Studemont saw new construction commence after the area between Oxford and Heights, so it definitely is not fully redeveloped by any stretch of the imagination. The sampling is small, but there is dose of overstatement going on in this thread.

BTW, a realtor was quoted in a recent Chronicle article saying 77008 was a "seller's market". Doesn't sound like a negative comment.

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The biggest difference between zoning and what has happened here is that the zoning went into effect before construction started and homes existed....In this case a minority of owners were able to change the rules and force their beliefs on everyone retroactively......People had owned homes they planned to renovate as they saw fit for many years and had the rules changed overnight and without any form of compensation.

Zoning does give predictability in an area knowing it will remain residential but it does not control the quality of the homes....this ordinance is bad all the way around for everyone who wanted to purchase property to live in and eventually sell at a premium, or upgrade to live in themselves. It only benefits those who have a small house they want to keep the property taxes down on.

And as was stated above - 77008 is a large area code....but the properties that are selling like hot cakes are the $500,000-$650,000 new construction homes (not the faux McCamelbacks). Even though people have their own opinions, I know of nobody who actually believes a McCamelback is an improvement on a small well maintained shack.

Drive down Waverly or Nicholson between 11th and 12th. Look at the quantity of new construction there...13 houses in less than a year...ALL sold. 2 currently under construction, 1 of which is owner building...then drive between 9th and 11th on Waverly and Nicholson....I have not counted but I believe its in the neighborhood of 11 houses completed & sold in the last year - and those have sold DESPITE being located across the street from and next door to an inpatient mental hospital.

The areas West of Yale outside of the district are BOOMING - there is no comparison at all that can be made anywhere inside of the ordinance area. Its not an exaggeration, just drive the area- you will see it yourself. Half the properties never make HAR as the builder is able to sell them without a realtor listing just by putting his sign out front....most of these homes dont list until they are half complete and not already sold.

"Definitively"? You can say that regulations like zoning raise costs, but that doesn't change the fact that zoning is used by every master planned community and incorporated suburb in Houston, in addition to every major city in Texas including Beaumont and Galveston. It apparently is effective. The predictability is a huge asset to the community and encourages further development.

There are two houses under construction on the western side of Oxford. There are not any under construction on the eastern side of that street. The two blocks from Oxford to Studemont saw new construction commence after the area between Oxford and Heights, so it definitely is not fully redeveloped by any stretch of the imagination. The sampling is small, but there is dose of overstatement going on in this thread.

BTW, a realtor was quoted in a recent Chronicle article saying 77008 was a "seller's market". Doesn't sound like a negative comment.

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