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I love this quote of yours! - I'm in line right behind you regarding appropriate retribution and am anxious for it to escalate to more that just talk on this website and begin to raise this sunken ship.

Me too! Red is dead-on although I like to think of it as retribution justice. I am equally anxious for it to escalate. Their wild claims of "Mission Accomplished" will be embarrassing for the City and the Mayor. They had a chance to do it right and be fair and they opted for winning at all costs with any illegitimate process they could dream up. Even though their dirty political maneuvering appears to have gotten the upper hand on the surface, it is just what is on the surface. We just have to be patient, and bide our time. Just a few weeks and the real fun begins because when politicians compromise their ethics for a personal agenda, it rarely turns out well for them.

And those who hitch their wagon to their colleagues in deals like this always end up collateral damage. Parker has said that Ed wasn't a leader and he needed hand-holding. She's got his number, knows he hasn't got a clue and is letting him be the fall guy in this deal. Lovell didn't have any consequences so she got to do most of the heavy lifting but Ed, well he'll have consequences no matter whether she redistricts him out of the Heights or not. In fact, it will be better for us to get him out of our district. He won't have his few minion hysterical preservationists to vote for him and instead will have a bunch of ticked off folks working on his opponents campaign telling his constituents how he was a rubber stamp for Annise Parker during his first term. Too bad for Ed. Everyone says he's a nice guy but being a nice guy won't save him from 1000+ pissed off Heights homeowners who have the motivation and deep enough pockets to impact a small council election. And because of their underhanded tactics, this will be going on long into the election season. We will remember who voted to take away property rights with this fraudulent process and we will vote and (donate) accordingly. They have no idea how committed people are, but they will soon.

But back to architecture - it would be great if someone put together a photo montage of all of the two story original historic homes with second story balconies in the Heights and submit it to Pace and Parker since they stood up at a public meeting and claimed they weren't built here. I suggest presenting it at Council so that they understand that these folks don't have a clue about the original architecture. Their comments about faux Victorians being inappropriate in the Heights along with the comments about Glenbrook Valley and the double front porches were so wrong, it was almost funny. Almost. What was funny was the woman who asked them to stop talking about the Heights and talk about their district - First Montrose Commons. The video shows Parker's facial expressions - hilarious! She was shocked that the residents of FMC could care less about the Heights! Annise needs a better poker face.

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I was here before you "preservationists". It is because of people like me that you thought the Heights was worth moving to. If I were to tell you to go f yourself, would you find that offensive? Becau

This is not a bully and name calling situation so much as forcefully pointing out the callousness of your position. You and others claim that your position and this ordinance protects the character a

http://swamplot.com/houstons-historic-districts-will-remain-as-they-are/2011-01-04/ It is over. All districts surveyed failed to muster the 51% needed to opt out. Yes, I know. You all are going

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Me too! Red is dead-on although I like to think of it as retribution justice. I am equally anxious for it to escalate. Their wild claims of "Mission Accomplished" will be embarrassing for the City and the Mayor. They had a chance to do it right and be fair and they opted for winning at all costs with any illegitimate process they could dream up. Even though their dirty political maneuvering appears to have gotten the upper hand on the surface, it is just what is on the surface. We just have to be patient, and bide our time. Just a few weeks and the real fun begins because when politicians compromise their ethics for a personal agenda, it rarely turns out well for them.

And those who hitch their wagon to their colleagues in deals like this always end up collateral damage. Parker has said that Ed wasn't a leader and he needed hand-holding. She's got his number, knows he hasn't got a clue and is letting him be the fall guy in this deal. Lovell didn't have any consequences so she got to do most of the heavy lifting but Ed, well he'll have consequences no matter whether she redistricts him out of the Heights or not. In fact, it will be better for us to get him out of our district. He won't have his few minion hysterical preservationists to vote for him and instead will have a bunch of ticked off folks working on his opponents campaign telling his constituents how he was a rubber stamp for Annise Parker during his first term. Too bad for Ed. Everyone says he's a nice guy but being a nice guy won't save him from 1000+ pissed off Heights homeowners who have the motivation and deep enough pockets to impact a small council election. And because of their underhanded tactics, this will be going on long into the election season. We will remember who voted to take away property rights with this fraudulent process and we will vote and (donate) accordingly. They have no idea how committed people are, but they will soon.

But back to architecture - it would be great if someone put together a photo montage of all of the two story original historic homes with second story balconies in the Heights and submit it to Pace and Parker since they stood up at a public meeting and claimed they weren't built here. I suggest presenting it at Council so that they understand that these folks don't have a clue about the original architecture. Their comments about faux Victorians being inappropriate in the Heights along with the comments about Glenbrook Valley and the double front porches were so wrong, it was almost funny. Almost. What was funny was the woman who asked them to stop talking about the Heights and talk about their district - First Montrose Commons. The video shows Parker's facial expressions - hilarious! She was shocked that the residents of FMC could care less about the Heights! Annise needs a better poker face.

There are at least 3 examples on Pecore alone, and that isn't a very long street. Although one no longer has a balcony (you can see where the balcony door used to be framed out from the inside of the house though).

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I wonder if I took a book of pictures of the original houses in the Heights, there are a couple of really good ones, we could use them as examples of Historic architecture that we want to replicate. I mean, the whole thing is about Historic preservation, and saving the neighborhood, what could be better than rebuilding houses like some of the ones that originally made the Heights great. I could do 2 story Victorians, 2 story Revivals, 2 story Craftsmen. Pretty much everything that I've been building. I think that would be a pretty valid argument too.

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Here's a house with an original balcony. Looks almost exactly like it does in the picture of my Grandfather standing in front of it in 1915 or so, when he lived there.

231 W 17th

There really are quite a number of them still standing. Corner of 13th and Harvard, 1500 block of Tulane has two, one on 20th occupied by TBW, 1300 block of Cortlandt, 900 block of Cortlandt (on the National Register), 1800 block of Harvard.

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I wonder if I took a book of pictures of the original houses in the Heights, there are a couple of really good ones, we could use them as examples of Historic architecture that we want to replicate. I mean, the whole thing is about Historic preservation, and saving the neighborhood, what could be better than rebuilding houses like some of the ones that originally made the Heights great. I could do 2 story Victorians, 2 story Revivals, 2 story Craftsmen. Pretty much everything that I've been building. I think that would be a pretty valid argument too.

Great idea! And now, thanks to all of our efforts, there is an appeal at City Council (and thanks to Wanda Adams who insisted on the appeal process). If the builders show up with photos of original homes and plans to build something virtually identical, I suspect Council would over-rule the hysterical preservation commission. The David and Sharie Show will undoubtedly be up there arguing against you but they have no credibility with Council anymore. And it will make any of them look ridiculous to argue against homes that are identical in style to the original architecture in the Heights. The number one thing they will fight over is size but my take on Council is that they understand that homes have to be built that are of a size that homebuyers want and lenders will finance. They will be reasonable where the hysterical group is not.

It would be good to submit some plans and see what they will approve (or not) and then see what the Council does with it. The appeal process could also help with the stuff that needs to be torn down. They will fight like heck to prevent any tear-downs but if it isn't economically feasible to do anything with it, supposedly they will approve it. The issue will be the length of time you have to deal with the process but you already were waiting for 90 days for demo and another 90 for incompatible so hopefully the appeals process wouldn't take that long. (hopefully).

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Get Ready Folks! I got an email saying that the Planning Director is going to present her info to Council next week on Wednesday. Now the fun begins.

Swamp lot is reporting no changes to the boundaries will be recommended...SURPRISE!....seriously though its just more bad news....Have they rescheduled the council meeting on this yet?

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Swamp lot is reporting no changes to the boundaries will be recommended...SURPRISE!....seriously though its just more bad news....Have they rescheduled the council meeting on this yet?

Looking at the repeal maps....from City of Houston...its interesting that they did not post Heights South....I believe that is where the most opposition was...I wonder what is holding up that process?

http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/HistoricPres/hist_pres_amend.html

I like that they have shown which properties opted out. Gives you an easy way to judge the intelligence or apathy of your neighbors.

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I attended the HAHC meeting last week, and I have to admit, the approval process is not as bad as I had feared. The bulk of the certificate of appropriate items on the agenda were approved as part of a consent agenda, and the HAHC board was sympathetic towards the remaining projects that were flagged for various reasons. Even projects that had questionable design elements were approved when the owner or architect explained the reasoning and the board discussed the ramifications and benefits to the value and appearance of the property. And looking back through previous meeting minutes, it appears that nearly all submitted COAs are approved. It seems that unless a project is particularly egregious in violating the ordinance, they are willing to consider approval. To be honest, I wish someone had proposed something overtly in violation of the ordinance just to see what would happen.

I do think the process could be sped up for simple COA requests. It requires being added to the schedule, and HAHC only meets once a month. This combined with the permitting process can easily add more than a month to getting a project started. It seems reasonable for larger projects like new home construction, but I think routine projects (like a COA for replacing a front door) could be done quicker. But I suppose it forces the property owner to think long and hard about their project, which is usually not a bad thing.

P.S. - I'm not suggesting that the design restrictions of the ordinance are preferable to everyone, just that the commission is easy to work with and the approval process is probably not worth getting worked up about - they seem willing to work with you and not fight you.

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Looking at the repeal maps....from City of Houston...its interesting that they did not post Heights South....I believe that is where the most opposition was...I wonder what is holding up that process?

http://www.houstontx...pres_amend.html

I like that they have shown which properties opted out. Gives you an easy way to judge the intelligence or apathy of your neighbors.

Or maybe not. I faxed in my "survey" to repeal the district and the little map does not reflect this. How many others had the same experience?

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I attended the HAHC meeting last week, and I have to admit, the approval process is not as bad as I had feared. The bulk of the certificate of appropriate items on the agenda were approved as part of a consent agenda, and the HAHC board was sympathetic towards the remaining projects that were flagged for various reasons. Even projects that had questionable design elements were approved when the owner or architect explained the reasoning and the board discussed the ramifications and benefits to the value and appearance of the property. And looking back through previous meeting minutes, it appears that nearly all submitted COAs are approved. It seems that unless a project is particularly egregious in violating the ordinance, they are willing to consider approval. To be honest, I wish someone had proposed something overtly in violation of the ordinance just to see what would happen.

I do think the process could be sped up for simple COA requests. It requires being added to the schedule, and HAHC only meets once a month. This combined with the permitting process can easily add more than a month to getting a project started. It seems reasonable for larger projects like new home construction, but I think routine projects (like a COA for replacing a front door) could be done quicker. But I suppose it forces the property owner to think long and hard about their project, which is usually not a bad thing.

P.S. - I'm not suggesting that the design restrictions of the ordinance are preferable to everyone, just that the commission is easy to work with and the approval process is probably not worth getting worked up about - they seem willing to work with you and not fight you.

They've been very agreeable lately. They weren't before the spotlight was on them. They were a major pain. Now that the Mayor fired Sharie Beale, maybe they will be better. I wouldn't be surprised of all of their willingness to work with people right now won't be short lived once they get a few months down the road...although this issue won't be going anywhere any time soon so they will be under lots of scrutiny for a long time. Get your remodel requests in now if you want a reasonable process.

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They've been very agreeable lately. They weren't before the spotlight was on them. They were a major pain. Now that the Mayor fired Sharie Beale, maybe they will be better. I wouldn't be surprised of all of their willingness to work with people right now won't be short lived once they get a few months down the road...although this issue won't be going anywhere any time soon so they will be under lots of scrutiny for a long time. Get your remodel requests in now if you want a reasonable process.

I'm looking for a second home bungalow to buy. We will probably rent it out for a while and then after a year my wife's parent's will move in. We are reluctant to consider anything in a Historic district. I don't care that the HAHC is being nice now. The ordinance prevents a reasonable second story addition that looks nice, and the HAHC's track record is not good with for instance many denials being for use of hardiplank. Ask Allison on Courtland about her experience with "too many fenestrations" for her remodel.

We've been in the market for this home for about two months. It's very refreshing to see new construction in Sunset Heights, and NE of Main St. I had no idea that these neighborhoods were progressing so much. There are many instances of dilapidated bungalos being replaced with very nice new construction and the neighborhoods are improving significantly. FWIW, we are fascinated by the creativity of the new construction regarding materials, floor plans, etc. It's fun to go to open houses and the McMansions are the most interesting. Smaller well maintained, and updated bungalows near the new construction are attractive to us because the neighborhood is starting to look very nice. E of Main St and N of Cavalcade is where there seems to be the most recent improvement.

Unfortunately, there is nothing going on in most of Houston Heights. It's already stagnating. There's a bungalow in rough shape (particularly inside) on Courtland near 18th that is listed for $279,000. No central AC, only one bathroom, 1970's kitchen, etc. I doubt they will get more than $200,000 for it. It's been on the market for a while - not sure how long. Before the ordinance, it would probably have sold easlily at $279K for lot value alone. We looked at a few camelbacks in the Heights, but they're all cramped in the camelback second story adddition. Upstairs ceilings are low, floor space is limited and the bedroom closets are very small. The camelback additiion is a design failure, in my opinion. Most camelbacks look stupid from the street too.

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This is why we opposed the ordinance. Adding ugly additions in order to "protect" the original simply ruins the entire house. Unfortunately, we will have to watch our neighborhood decline under the weight of this ordinance, with our only recourse being that we can say, "I told you so." Not the way I wanted to see all of my hard work rewarded.

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This is why we opposed the ordinance. Adding ugly additions in order to "protect" the original simply ruins the entire house. Unfortunately, we will have to watch our neighborhood decline under the weight of this ordinance, with our only recourse being that we can say, "I told you so." Not the way I wanted to see all of my hard work rewarded.

I can't add on to mine in a way that makes sense to fix the objections a homebuyer would have. The ordinance prohibits it. So it will remain historic and I'll quit improving it, live with it the way it is and NOT make it better. It had an ugly remodel in the 80's. I have been working to make it look more period. That stops. I need dormers for my attic master. I need more closets. I need more storage. I need a half bath and a larger kitchen. All were in the plans and now won't happen because the most important things that need to be done won't be permitted.

BTW, this is being circulated today. It would be funny if it were not so tragic.

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I hope at least this aspect of the ordinance can be changed. There are plenty of two-story houses and second-story additions sprinkled throughout the historic districts from before the ordinance, and I personally think additions that are flush at the front are much more natural and functional. Not only that, but less yard space is consumed in a vertical buildup, allowing a back yard and more drainage area. The camelback additions are awkward both in appearance and in terms of the floor plan, and they are particularly unbecoming on a corner lot where the profile contrast is most visible. I don't mean to rain on anyone's parade, as I there are a number of camelbacks under construction right now by folks who are just following the rules in order to add square footage. But I would love to see this rule scrapped before more and more houses are given a humpback.

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Something barracuda said earlier has been bugging me all day. Would I really have to apply for permission just to replace my front door? Really?? I have to replace my own 100 year old door that's been warped, shimmed and planed to death. As it is, I'll need to have a new one custom milled to fit. It's just unconscionable to me I'd have to ask permission from a committee.

Whole parts of the Heights still have open ditches for drainage, and you have to permit a door? Sorry, but Onion Creek, a mac n cheese place and a couple of antiques stores ain't all that. Boy am I glad I chose the east end instead.

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Something barracuda said earlier has been bugging me all day. Would I really have to apply for permission just to replace my front door? Really?? I have to replace my own 100 year old door that's been warped, shimmed and planed to death. As it is, I'll need to have a new one custom milled to fit. It's just unconscionable to me I'd have to ask permission from a committee.

Whole parts of the Heights still have open ditches for drainage, and you have to permit a door? Sorry, but Onion Creek, a mac n cheese place and a couple of antiques stores ain't all that. Boy am I glad I chose the east end instead.

Sad to say but you would have to get permission fromt the HAHC to change EVERY architectural feature except light fixtures and paint. Front doors, windows, trim work, railings, siding, facia board, soffits, all have to have a permit and a Certificate of Appropriateness. Now you see why we fought so hard.

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Something barracuda said earlier has been bugging me all day. Would I really have to apply for permission just to replace my front door? Really?? I have to replace my own 100 year old door that's been warped, shimmed and planed to death. As it is, I'll need to have a new one custom milled to fit. It's just unconscionable to me I'd have to ask permission from a committee.

Whole parts of the Heights still have open ditches for drainage, and you have to permit a door? Sorry, but Onion Creek, a mac n cheese place and a couple of antiques stores ain't all that. Boy am I glad I chose the east end instead.

mac n cheese is all that, luckily I can make it in my kitchen.

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"I suspect Council would over-rule the hysterical preservation commission." "They will be reasonable where the hysterical group is not."

(emphasis added)

It wasn't especially funny the first time. Repetition doesn't help.

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(emphasis added)

It wasn't especially funny the first time. Repetition doesn't help.

It wasn't meant to be funny the first time. And it isn't funny that city council is being lied to about whether they have to vote on this crap or not. The mayor and planning director out and out LIED to council on Wednesday on numerous issues. Some of them called them on it. They couldn't "win" fair and square so they had to cheat and lie and deceive everyone, including city council.

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Something barracuda said earlier has been bugging me all day. Would I really have to apply for permission just to replace my front door? Really?? I have to replace my own 100 year old door that's been warped, shimmed and planed to death. As it is, I'll need to have a new one custom milled to fit. It's just unconscionable to me I'd have to ask permission from a committee.

Whole parts of the Heights still have open ditches for drainage, and you have to permit a door? Sorry, but Onion Creek, a mac n cheese place and a couple of antiques stores ain't all that. Boy am I glad I chose the east end instead.

You could probably replace it without anyone noticing, but yes, you are supposed to get a COA, per sec. 33-201. This is why I suggested such routine alterations be fast-tracked for approval instead of requiring the full COA process. Replacing a door shouldn't require going through the same review process as the construction of a new house.

Alteration means any change to the exterior of a building, structure, object or site. Alteration shall include, but is not limited to, changing to a different kind, type or size of roofing or siding materials; changing, eliminating, or adding exterior doors, door frames, windows, window frames, shutters, railings, columns, beams, walls, porches, steps, porte-cocheres, balconies, or ornamentation; or the dismantling, moving or removing of any exterior feature.
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It wasn't meant to be funny the first time. And it isn't funny that city council is being lied to about whether they have to vote on this crap or not. The mayor and planning director out and out LIED to council on Wednesday on numerous issues. Some of them called them on it. They couldn't "win" fair and square so they had to cheat and lie and deceive everyone, including city council.

I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

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I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

Sadly, when you point out the specifics and the EXACT wording of the ordinance to the preservationist crowd they call you a liar.

Then you quote the language, show how ambiguous it actually is, and how the HAHC can easily abuse the ordinance and its language, and they call you a liar again.

You can not win with these people...the truth is not persuasive...they do not care how they get what they want, or who they trample to get it...

When the truth, even a very clear bad truth, is not persuasive people naturally start to exaggerate to make their point, and get some attention to their arguments. That is all that has happened here...you get a little crazy to draw attention to your cause....look at the Union protesters....they are only making news because they are acting crazy and not giving up....if it was calm and orderly the news organizations would not care.

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I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

My use of the term "hysterical" rather than historical comes from seeing flyer after flyer full of scare tactics about townhouses, condos and high rises. The ordinance even states that this was an emergency. They have grossly exaggerated the number of demolitions. So, when you see a group that repeatedly talks as if the sky is falling when it's not, sometimes a more descriptive term is required. If the term fits, wear it. It is anything but funny. This is an issue about individual rights and they are being usurped by the city in an illegitimate and undemocratic process. I use the term appropriately as a descriptor for the types of claims these groups are making and are unchallenged.

As far as the lies and misrepresentations go, the list is long. All you have to do is listen to last weeks council comments. And all of these lies and deceptions are going to hit the proverbial fan soon.

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I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

What about the repeated subsitution of the word "preservationist" for "ordinance". If you are against the ordinance, you are called anti-preservationist, even if you have spent a lot of time/money/effort on saving/rehabbing/restoring historical buildings. Just because it is less blatant doesn't make it acceptable.

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I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

My use of that term also stems from emails I have recieved from people I know and know I am opposed to this ordinance. They have made comments like they "nearly lost their mind" regarding a house was torn down in a neighborhood they don't even live in. Or have sent me hate mail telling me we are trying to destroy the neighborhood. I have pointed out the vague language of the first draft of the ordinance which allowed for city control of everything and for that I was called a liar, and continue to be called a liar. But I can read and the complaints made about that vague language were solved by some exclusions in the final ordinance. I've watched this group operate for years but wouldn't have called them hysterical until the last nine months when they have demonstrated they are completely irrational about this issue and appear to be quite hysterical.

Instead of picking at my words however, perhaps you might ask why someone would use those words.

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Sadly, when you point out the specifics and the EXACT wording of the ordinance to the preservationist crowd they call you a liar.

Then you quote the language, show how ambiguous it actually is, and how the HAHC can easily abuse the ordinance and its language, and they call you a liar again.

To be fair they say "that isn't the spirit of the law" and that you are intentionally "making it look worse than it will be"

But in reality, until the law is practiced, no one knows how the law will be enforced, however the wording is there for them to be extremely draconian in their enforcement.

What is very frustrating is to see people who are in vehement support of the ordinance having made it very clear through their misunderstanding that they have never read it, they are just for it. How can someone be for something without knowing what capability it has?

Anyway, the real question that needs to be asked, is: If that isn't within the spirit of the ordinance, why was it written that way?

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To be fair they say "that isn't the spirit of the law" and that you are intentionally "making it look worse than it will be"

But in reality, until the law is practiced, no one knows how the law will be enforced, however the wording is there for them to be extremely draconian in their enforcement.

What is very frustrating is to see people who are in vehement support of the ordinance having made it very clear through their misunderstanding that they have never read it, they are just for it. How can someone be for something without knowing what capability it has?

Anyway, the real question that needs to be asked, is: If that isn't within the spirit of the ordinance, why was it written that way?

The first revision to the ordinance had no change in the language about maintenance/repairs etc. But you all ran around claiming that the City would be able to control paint color, HVAC, and even content of political yard signs under the revised ordinance. This was not based on anything the City had ever done in the past, but pure speculation on reading the ordinance in a vacuum. So there was a case where the law had been practiced, and the anti-preservation people ignored the practice to try to scare people into believing that there was some intent on the part of the City that did not exist. This was largely the reason the anti-preservationists could barely get half the needed votes to do away with the historic districts. They had no good argument for allowing builders to run wild in the Heights and had to resort to scare tactics to try to fool people into believing that the ordinance would do all kinds of things it would not do. As a result, a big opportunity was lost to work together to create a better ordinance. A fast track procedure for minor changes would have been a great idea. But issues like that never came up because the vast majority of the dialog with the City was either all in or all out.

As noted above, the HAHC is perfectly reasonable. They have approved three new construction projects in the Heights in the past two sessions (two were 3500 sq ft houses). While lot value for a neglected bungalow will go down, the value of an empty lot looks to be going up ($320k asking price for a lot in the Heights East--probably 40-50k too high, but who knows). In the short run, the building boom in the historic districts will slow a bit as the McVic builders flee to the non-district areas. But that is good for the Heights too. Areas north of 20th and on the periphery of the districts will see more development than they would have without the ordinance. Inside the districts, there will never again be the horrific contemporary odd balls, monsterous fake New Orleans junk packed 4 to a 2 home lot and cruddy, oddball rennovations (closed in porches, goofy circular windows and other oddities that wreck the character of historic homes).

The Heights will be even better than ever under the Historic Ordinance. People looking to buy won't have to worry about what might go up next door anymore. People looking to rennovate won't have to worry about ending up with lot value after being surrounded by McVics. Crow all you want about how Eastwood is now better than the Heights because of the Historic Ordinance. Or about how the Heights are "stagnating" because someone thinks they can still get lot value (just saw a great bungalow on Columbia sell within a week of listing--some stagnation). Just like the claims about paint color and HVACs, the reality is nothing like what the anti-preservationists will ever be able to recognize.

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I understand that you're opposed to this ordinance. If lies have been told or misrepresentations made, the specifics would do a lot towards persuading people to your point of view.

My comment regarded your repeated substitution of the word 'hysterical' for 'historical'; it puts me in mind of people who use terms like "Femi-Nazis".

Surely there are wittier and more convincing ways to make a point.

For reference as to why everyone replaces historical with hysterical...

.....content of political yard signs under the revised ordinance.....

Although it was mentioned once that it was a point that the ordinance as was written gave the capability for this to be governed, and even stated by the person that made the comment that it was not believed that this would be the way the law was interpreted, or enforced.

However, this has been referenced on more than multiple occasions this person I quoted, to create a 'negative hysteria' if you will, and I'm sure it isn't used just in here. I'm sure this person mentions it to every person possible to continue to sow seeds of dissension and confusion regarding the ordinance.

You had mentioned you applaud this person's writing and standing up, I wish I could agree with you. A person who disagrees with something without truths and facts is not standing up at all, they are just blowing hot air (or mashing on a keyboard, as it were). in fact, I would go so far as to state that a person such as s3mh does more to harm their plight than gain support by making false statements, and not even knowing the text of the ordinance in full before making claims about what it does and doesn't achieve, or can achieve.

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The first revision to the ordinance had no change in the language about maintenance/repairs etc. But you all ran around claiming that the City would be able to control paint color, HVAC, and even content of political yard signs under the revised ordinance. This was not based on anything the City had ever done in the past, but pure speculation on reading the ordinance in a vacuum. So there was a case where the law had been practiced, and the anti-preservation people ignored the practice to try to scare people into believing that there was some intent on the part of the City that did not exist. This was largely the reason the anti-preservationists could barely get half the needed votes to do away with the historic districts. They had no good argument for allowing builders to run wild in the Heights and had to resort to scare tactics to try to fool people into believing that the ordinance would do all kinds of things it would not do. As a result, a big opportunity was lost to work together to create a better ordinance. A fast track procedure for minor changes would have been a great idea. But issues like that never came up because the vast majority of the dialog with the City was either all in or all out.

As noted above, the HAHC is perfectly reasonable. They have approved three new construction projects in the Heights in the past two sessions (two were 3500 sq ft houses). While lot value for a neglected bungalow will go down, the value of an empty lot looks to be going up ($320k asking price for a lot in the Heights East--probably 40-50k too high, but who knows). In the short run, the building boom in the historic districts will slow a bit as the McVic builders flee to the non-district areas. But that is good for the Heights too. Areas north of 20th and on the periphery of the districts will see more development than they would have without the ordinance. Inside the districts, there will never again be the horrific contemporary odd balls, monsterous fake New Orleans junk packed 4 to a 2 home lot and cruddy, oddball rennovations (closed in porches, goofy circular windows and other oddities that wreck the character of historic homes).

The Heights will be even better than ever under the Historic Ordinance. People looking to buy won't have to worry about what might go up next door anymore. People looking to rennovate won't have to worry about ending up with lot value after being surrounded by McVics. Crow all you want about how Eastwood is now better than the Heights because of the Historic Ordinance. Or about how the Heights are "stagnating" because someone thinks they can still get lot value (just saw a great bungalow on Columbia sell within a week of listing--some stagnation). Just like the claims about paint color and HVACs, the reality is nothing like what the anti-preservationists will ever be able to recognize.

I honestly didn't read any of what you wrote, I scanned it, but saw no answer to my question, which I really want to hear your answer:

Again, I ask, if the framers of the ordinance had no intention of allowing such overzealous things happen, why is it written is such a way as to allow it? Why don't you answer that one S3MH? I encourage anyone who approves of the ordinance in its current state to please answer that question for me. And for the record, I'm not talking about political yard signs either, you are the only person who keeps bringing that up.

I bet that if the ordinance was written in a much more specific manner that it would have gained even more support than it had, and in addition, they would not have had to resort to such underhanded tactics of getting it approved. But that's just my opinion and I have no way of supporting it as anything more.

I went ahead and bolded the important parts for you, hopefully you won't miss it this time.

Edited by samagon
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The first revision to the ordinance had no change in the language about maintenance/repairs etc. But you all ran around claiming that the City would be able to control paint color, HVAC, and even content of political yard signs under the revised ordinance. This was not based on anything the City had ever done in the past, but pure speculation on reading the ordinance in a vacuum. So there was a case where the law had been practiced, and the anti-preservation people ignored the practice to try to scare people into believing that there was some intent on the part of the City that did not exist. This was largely the reason the anti-preservationists could barely get half the needed votes to do away with the historic districts. They had no good argument for allowing builders to run wild in the Heights and had to resort to scare tactics to try to fool people into believing that the ordinance would do all kinds of things it would not do. As a result, a big opportunity was lost to work together to create a better ordinance. A fast track procedure for minor changes would have been a great idea. But issues like that never came up because the vast majority of the dialog with the City was either all in or all out.

As noted above, the HAHC is perfectly reasonable. They have approved three new construction projects in the Heights in the past two sessions (two were 3500 sq ft houses). While lot value for a neglected bungalow will go down, the value of an empty lot looks to be going up ($320k asking price for a lot in the Heights East--probably 40-50k too high, but who knows). In the short run, the building boom in the historic districts will slow a bit as the McVic builders flee to the non-district areas. But that is good for the Heights too. Areas north of 20th and on the periphery of the districts will see more development than they would have without the ordinance. Inside the districts, there will never again be the horrific contemporary odd balls, monsterous fake New Orleans junk packed 4 to a 2 home lot and cruddy, oddball rennovations (closed in porches, goofy circular windows and other oddities that wreck the character of historic homes).

The Heights will be even better than ever under the Historic Ordinance. People looking to buy won't have to worry about what might go up next door anymore. People looking to rennovate won't have to worry about ending up with lot value after being surrounded by McVics. Crow all you want about how Eastwood is now better than the Heights because of the Historic Ordinance. Or about how the Heights are "stagnating" because someone thinks they can still get lot value (just saw a great bungalow on Columbia sell within a week of listing--some stagnation). Just like the claims about paint color and HVACs, the reality is nothing like what the anti-preservationists will ever be able to recognize.

are you just a troll, or do you actually believe in what you just said? "barely get half the needed votes" Are you serious? If it would have been the other way around, where the card had to be signed and returned for the ordinance to stay, do you really think think it would have did as well? Take off the blinders and work with your neighbors. The ordinance is in effect already, why not work with the anti-ordinance folks (quit calling them anti-preservation) on coming up with a solution that more people will tolerate? Do you really not care about 1/4 of your neighbors?

You are the same person how said "we will remember who opposed us" and made your threats about preventing people from getting COAs, so yeah I would say the speculative vacuum reading was warranted. Keep on spewing your worthless rhetoric though.

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The first revision to the ordinance had no change in the language about maintenance/repairs etc. But you all ran around claiming that the City would be able to control paint color, HVAC, and even content of political yard signs under the revised ordinance. This was not based on anything the City had ever done in the past, but pure speculation on reading the ordinance in a vacuum. So there was a case where the law had been practiced, and the anti-preservation people ignored the practice to try to scare people into believing that there was some intent on the part of the City that did not exist. This was largely the reason the anti-preservationists could barely get half the needed votes to do away with the historic districts. They had no good argument for allowing builders to run wild in the Heights and had to resort to scare tactics to try to fool people into believing that the ordinance would do all kinds of things it would not do. As a result, a big opportunity was lost to work together to create a better ordinance. A fast track procedure for minor changes would have been a great idea. But issues like that never came up because the vast majority of the dialog with the City was either all in or all out.

As noted above, the HAHC is perfectly reasonable. They have approved three new construction projects in the Heights in the past two sessions (two were 3500 sq ft houses). While lot value for a neglected bungalow will go down, the value of an empty lot looks to be going up ($320k asking price for a lot in the Heights East--probably 40-50k too high, but who knows). In the short run, the building boom in the historic districts will slow a bit as the McVic builders flee to the non-district areas. But that is good for the Heights too. Areas north of 20th and on the periphery of the districts will see more development than they would have without the ordinance. Inside the districts, there will never again be the horrific contemporary odd balls, monsterous fake New Orleans junk packed 4 to a 2 home lot and cruddy, oddball rennovations (closed in porches, goofy circular windows and other oddities that wreck the character of historic homes).

The Heights will be even better than ever under the Historic Ordinance. People looking to buy won't have to worry about what might go up next door anymore. People looking to rennovate won't have to worry about ending up with lot value after being surrounded by McVics. Crow all you want about how Eastwood is now better than the Heights because of the Historic Ordinance. Or about how the Heights are "stagnating" because someone thinks they can still get lot value (just saw a great bungalow on Columbia sell within a week of listing--some stagnation). Just like the claims about paint color and HVACs, the reality is nothing like what the anti-preservationists will ever be able to recognize.

So if the Ordinance was not originally designed to control paint color, why then did they have to go back and SPECIFICALLY EXCLUDE IT?? Paint color control was allowed in the original draft and specifically excluded in the version that became law.

The anti-ordinance crowd is the only reason that was modified. If it were not for them, it would now be law that you have to ask some donkey's permission to change your house color! The government has an extremely poor track record on abuse of power and use of power for personal gains....I want them to have as little control over myself and my property as possible.

You support the ordinance because you perceive it to do what you want. But when there is a new government in power who does not agree with you any longer, how do you think you will feel when an ordinance is passed requiring you to tear down your old well maintained shack if any repair requiring a permit ever has to be made? After all a very good case can be made that the older well maintained shacks are huge fire hazards, and a danger to the public. Many have extremely old wiring without grounds, many have uninsulated aluminum wiring, they are old dry wood just ready for a match, none of them have the newer fire retardant drywall or other features that make the PUBLIC safer....you see where I am going? It does not take a huge imagination to come up with a reason that we the public can create to cause you to lose the rights on YOUR home....You got your way this time...but power is fickle...those who abuse it lose, and then the next administration comes in and usually goes to far in their efforts to undue the previous administrations problems.

Look to Washington. Everyone hated Bush, now we have something far worse, a polar opposite.....wait till 2012....if you are an Obama lover you are very likely to HATE the next president.....going too far always has repercussions.

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They had no good argument for allowing builders to run wild in the Heights and had to resort to scare tactics to try to fool people into believing that the ordinance would do all kinds of things it would not do.

I don't have time to address the rest of the nonsense from this post at the moment but this is a perfect example of the appropriate use of the term "hysterical" preservationist. Really - allowing builders to run wild?? The builder boogey man running wild through the Heights is deserving of the term hysterical. This is the typical language of these people.

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I don't have time to address the rest of the nonsense from this post at the moment but this is a perfect example of the appropriate use of the term "hysterical" preservationist. Really - allowing builders to run wild?? The builder boogey man running wild through the Heights is deserving of the term hysterical. This is the typical language of these people.

Here is some hysterical language:

http://blogs.chron.com/houstonpolitics/2011/03/the_gestapo_at_city_hall.html

Maybe CM Jones will be the anti-preservationist candidate for mayor.

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Here is some hysterical language:

http://blogs.chron.com/houstonpolitics/2011/03/the_gestapo_at_city_hall.html

Maybe CM Jones will be the anti-preservationist candidate for mayor.

Looks like you found another place to post your sob story about lot value and having your view ruined. It also appears there are quite a few people who would rather suffer Jolanda Jones' antics than than your social engineering agenda masquerading as preservation.

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Here is some hysterical language:

http://blogs.chron.com/houstonpolitics/2011/03/the_gestapo_at_city_hall.html

Maybe CM Jones will be the anti-preservationist candidate for mayor.

Anyone know how much historic preservation costs the city? How much to run the commission? How much for the historic preservation staff? Did MAP cut anyone there? I'm sure we could save hundreds of thousands of dollars by eliminating this department entirely. Randy Pace, Thomas McWhorter, Courtney Spillane, Diana DuCroz, probably others, would save us plenty. Without having the cost of managing the commission, we could save a bit more.

Were there any cuts to that department? Then there is the big salaries of the directors. Without preservation to manage, maybe we would only need one, not two. Or maybe they could focus on the real job of planning instead of this nonsense. My guess is there will be no cuts to the historic staff. The Governor saw fit to slice the budget for the Texas Historic Commission. Why can't our mayor?

Maybe our next mayor will? What do you think?

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Looks like you found another place to post your sob story about lot value and having your view ruined. It also appears there are quite a few people who would rather suffer Jolanda Jones' antics than than your social engineering agenda masquerading as preservation.

Did anyone watch the council battle yesterday over not just preservation but redistricting. The knives were out for Parker. She is very unpopular with her own council. Several of them, Clutterbuck and Adams in particular went for the jugular yesterday.

I think its item 18:

http://houstontx.city.swagit.com/player.php?refid=03022011-3

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Here is some hysterical language:

http://blogs.chron.c..._city_hall.html

Maybe CM Jones will be the anti-preservationist candidate for mayor.

I think you mean *anti-ordinance*

nice use of hysterical language while attempting to call out... hysterical language.

now for my hysterical language rant...

I suppose CM Jones is one of your right wing conservative teabaggers you constantly imply are the only ones against the ordinance?

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I think you mean *anti-ordinance*

nice use of hysterical language while attempting to call out... hysterical language.

now for my hysterical language rant...

I suppose CM Jones is one of your right wing conservative teabaggers you constantly imply are the only ones against the ordinance?

He always uses "anit-preservation" instead of anti-ordinance" which is yet another fine example of why we use the term hysterical preservationist. Everything is the extreme. We can't be for preservation and against the ordinance because he can only conceive of preservation in terms of giving the city control. Extremism earns you extreme description hence the reference by Jones (not that I advocate use of that term).

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Here is some hysterical language:

http://blogs.chron.c..._city_hall.html

Maybe CM Jones will be the anti-preservationist candidate for mayor.

I have a feeling that you and Jones have more in common than you have differences. Just because she is on the right side of an issue for once in her life does not make her a viable candidate for anything other than a Democrat controlled district.

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Did anyone watch the council battle yesterday over not just preservation but redistricting. The knives were out for Parker. She is very unpopular with her own council. Several of them, Clutterbuck and Adams in particular went for the jugular yesterday.

I think its item 18:

http://houstontx.cit...efid=03022011-3

Its the Mayor's report, not item 18.

Wong at 15:00 makes a great argument...that gifford, or whatever her name is makes it crystal clear....quoting roughhand, not exact...Gifford: "we do not need any of the property owners support to start a historic district"

That is truly a sad statement, and reflects the true arrogance of this administration.

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He always uses "anit-preservation" instead of anti-ordinance" which is yet another fine example of why we use the term hysterical preservationist. Everything is the extreme. We can't be for preservation and against the ordinance because he can only conceive of preservation in terms of giving the city control. Extremism earns you extreme description hence the reference by Jones (not that I advocate use of that term).

No, anti-preservation is accurate. This thread alone is full of posts bashing on bungalows as not being deserving of preservation because they are too small for modern families and have no architectural value because they are out of a Sears catalog. Then there are the arguments about diversity of housing being something that is better for the Heights than preserving historic structures. And tons of talk about how new construction in the Heights is the reason the Heights has been successful instead of the work of preservationists. The argument that people who are anti-ordinance are actually pro-preservation is based on the fake argument that deed restrictions are all you need to preserve the historic character of the Heights. That is like saying that regulating emmissions from the ship channel is a bad way to control air pollution in Houston because people who want clean air should just drive less and use fewer petroleum products. And as I have said numerous times, if the people who were against the ordinance were really for preservation, they would have come forward with ways to make a better revised ordinance rather than sending fliers out trying to kill off the historic districts altogether. The fact of the matter is that there is nothing extreme about the ordinance. There is no great imposition on property rights. People are still building in the Heights. People are still selling their homes for a nice profit in the Heights (although there is a bit of a glut of high-end overbuilt houses). People are still rennovating their housing in the Heights. Thus, the anti-preservationists are forced to make outlandish claims about due process and constitutional law, and find themselves in the company of CM Jones and her extremely ignorant Gestappo comment.

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Its the Mayor's report, not item 18.

Wong at 15:00 makes a great argument...that gifford, or whatever her name is makes it crystal clear....quoting roughhand, not exact...Gifford: "we do not need any of the property owners support to start a historic district"

That is truly a sad statement, and reflects the true arrogance of this administration.

it isn't arrogance, it is the truth, unfortunately...

Sec. 33-221. Designation.

(a) The city council may designate buildings, structures, objects and sites as

landmarks and protected landmarks, may designate areas as historic districts, may

designate sites as archaeological sites, and may define, amend and delineate the

boundaries of any landmark, protected landmark, historic district or archaeological site

as provided in this article.

Unfortunately, S3MH hasn't gotten back to me on why things like this are written in the ordinance, if there are no intentions to use the ordinance that way.

Obviously, from Gifford's quote there, the intention was absolutely to use it in the way it was written (at least by some).

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No, anti-preservation is accurate. This thread alone is full of posts bashing on bungalows as not being deserving of preservation because they are too small for modern families and have no architectural value because they are out of a Sears catalog. Then there are the arguments about diversity of housing being something that is better for the Heights than preserving historic structures. And tons of talk about how new construction in the Heights is the reason the Heights has been successful instead of the work of preservationists. The argument that people who are anti-ordinance are actually pro-preservation is based on the fake argument that deed restrictions are all you need to preserve the historic character of the Heights. That is like saying that regulating emmissions from the ship channel is a bad way to control air pollution in Houston because people who want clean air should just drive less and use fewer petroleum products. And as I have said numerous times, if the people who were against the ordinance were really for preservation, they would have come forward with ways to make a better revised ordinance rather than sending fliers out trying to kill off the historic districts altogether. The fact of the matter is that there is nothing extreme about the ordinance. There is no great imposition on property rights. People are still building in the Heights. People are still selling their homes for a nice profit in the Heights (although there is a bit of a glut of high-end overbuilt houses). People are still rennovating their housing in the Heights. Thus, the anti-preservationists are forced to make outlandish claims about due process and constitutional law, and find themselves in the company of CM Jones and her extremely ignorant Gestappo comment.

As an owner of an original bungalow who has been forced to stop renovations in midstream due to this ridiculous ordinance as well as the diminished value of my home, I am uniquely qualified to call you out as a pathological liar. An ordinance that causes me to stop renovations because the renovations approved and permitted in 2009 for my garage are now outlawed on my house is the very definition of extreme. I hope you stay in your crappy house in your district, because I'd give you an earful if I ever saw you on my block.

And, no, my wonderful half-renovated bungalow is not historic, though that doesn't mean I don't care for it dearly, and don't want architecturally ignorant morons telling me what I can't do with it.

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Its the Mayor's report, not item 18.

Wong at 15:00 makes a great argument...that gifford, or whatever her name is makes it crystal clear....quoting roughhand, not exact...Gifford: "we do not need any of the property owners support to start a historic district"

That is truly a sad statement, and reflects the true arrogance of this administration.

I was refering to the redistricting issue, where the knives were really out. That is item 18. The preservation issue was in the Mayor's Report and was tame compared to the redistricting issue.

And it's Gafrick...LOL!

Edited by Heights Homeowner
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No, anti-preservation is accurate. This thread alone is full of posts bashing on bungalows as not being deserving of preservation because they are too small for modern families and have no architectural value because they are out of a Sears catalog. Then there are the arguments about diversity of housing being something that is better for the Heights than preserving historic structures. And tons of talk about how new construction in the Heights is the reason the Heights has been successful instead of the work of preservationists. The argument that people who are anti-ordinance are actually pro-preservation is based on the fake argument that deed restrictions are all you need to preserve the historic character of the Heights. That is like saying that regulating emmissions from the ship channel is a bad way to control air pollution in Houston because people who want clean air should just drive less and use fewer petroleum products. And as I have said numerous times, if the people who were against the ordinance were really for preservation, they would have come forward with ways to make a better revised ordinance rather than sending fliers out trying to kill off the historic districts altogether. The fact of the matter is that there is nothing extreme about the ordinance. There is no great imposition on property rights. People are still building in the Heights. People are still selling their homes for a nice profit in the Heights (although there is a bit of a glut of high-end overbuilt houses). People are still rennovating their housing in the Heights. Thus, the anti-preservationists are forced to make outlandish claims about due process and constitutional law, and find themselves in the company of CM Jones and her extremely ignorant Gestappo comment.

As is so typical of your posts, you are full of inaccuracies and lies.

First, there are very few Sears catalog houses. Mine wasn’t. Get informed. And they are too small for most modern families. One of my good friends just put their house on the market for that reason – it’s even a 3 bedroom, 2 baths but the rooms are small and there is no storage. They have toddler and want another soon. They are busting at the seams…their words, not mine.

Second, the reason people are now willing to sink big bucks into renovations is because the builders got rid of so many of the structures that would never get renovated and the property values went up enough to warrant the extra costs in renovation vs. new build. But again, you know nothing about that industry. And clearly you know nothing about the Heights. I was around when very few wanted to live here – you weren’t. You are clueless and just believe the nonsense the extremists spew constantly.

Third, plenty of people involved advocated for many changes to the ordinance that made it better and were called anti-preservation. And it is a bold faced lie that we didn’t want the changes to the ordinance. We want it where there is support for it. Broad Acres loves it and we are happy for them. They also have huge houses which makes it easy to love. And not a single person has made the argument that deed restrictions preserve the historic character but they do prevent townhouses and condos and high rises that were the proponent’s lies about why we needed the city to control our property.

And lastly, every single lawyer we talk to, involved in this or not, thinks this won’t hold up for a second in a courtroom, particularly in Texas and most especially in Houston. And Parker is risking your precious ordinance over some bungalows – not all – that should be demolished. The process that she used is going to get overturned in court and it will open the door to killing the whole thing. If she had any sense, she would let these contested districts go and not run the risk of losing it all – but clearly she doesn’t. And council is so furious with her that she might just lose a lot more over this.

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