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The only thing anyone can do is speak with their voice. Several have spoken against me, and if you think I would be a benefit to the community, please speak with your voice to show support of me. If they only hear one side, they have no incentive to act any differently.

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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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Let your voice be heard, this is not the Obama administration so don't worry about reprisals.  So many times I watched one or two misguided fools on the HAHC hold sway over that group.  All it would take is one or two normal people on the HAHC willing to explain in simple terms the consequences of some of these idiotic votes, and we can take back our neighborhood.  I need some help.

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I finally was able to call Council Member Cohen back since my last post (I was in mtgs all day).

 

CM Cohen has been shocked/impressed with all of the support that has flooded her office today for nominating me to the HAHC. Therefore, please keep it up and thank you!! Also, please send your emails and phone calls to other City Council members as well. It can be short and sweet: literally a phone call with a message to the admin and a 2 sentence email. This does spades in showing how many people think that I would be good for the neighborhood. 

 

Bradford, Christie, Gonzalez and Cohen are all very supportive of me. During my appeal process, Costello and Pennington were supportive too, although I'm not sure if this is a big topic for them today (it might be, I just don't know if they are aware of these recent happenings, but I know the first 4 are very involved). Therefore, please send your emails to everyone copied below. If you have a couple of short minutes, please call too - you will only leave a voicemail or message with the admin, which takes ~30 seconds. If you are prioritizing (b/c I know we're all busy), I'd recommend the following order:

 

Cohen: 832.393.3004

Bradford: 832.393.3012

Christie: 832.393.3017

Gonzalez: 832.393.3003

Pennington: 832.393.3007

Costello: 832.393.3014

 

If you're still reading, here is the update since talking to CM Cohen. Even though I was vetted and approved through the system (but not voted on by City Council yet b/c they didn't have a public meeting this week), they are likely going to withdraw my nomination. This is because they received a "legal opinion" yesterday from the city attorney that the citizen who's position I was going to fill, is not at his term limit and can serve another term. She was embarrassed and sorry that things have turned out this way, and I truly believe that she was blind-sided by all of these events. She does not conduct business this way, and I believe her. My hunch is that this certain citizen representative was going to step down, and then somebody who doesn't like me heard about my nomination and called and asked him to stay.  I'm still a bit confused about this, but somehow this prompted legal department to "advice" on his term limit, which he is not at the max yet (he started in 2008). It is unprecedented that the City Council would nominate somebody against an incumbent, so it is likely that they will withdraw my nomination. However, when I asked how that works, she said that is an excellent question!! They have not withdrawn my nomination yet, so the more vocal you can be in support of me, the higher the chance (albeit small) that my nomination will not be withdrawn. I truly believe that CM Cohen has been put in a very bad spot, and this is not fair to her or me or our neighborhood. 

 

I know fwki likely thinks I sound cheesy, but all we have are our voices. All of your support calls/emails made a serious impact to CM Cohen today. If the other council members get similar calls/emails, it can do nothing but help.

 

Thank you again for your support.

 

<Jonathan.Newport@houstontx.gov>, jack.christie@houstontx.gov, <sandra.puente@houstontx.gov>, <Brad.Bradford@houstontx.gov>, annise.parker@houstontx.gov,Brooke.Boyett@houstontx.gov,ellen.cohen@houstontx.gov,mayor@houstontx.gov, districta@houstontx.gov, districtb@houstontx.gov, districtc@houstontx.gov, districtd@houstontx.gov, districte@houstontx.gov, districtf@houstontx.gov, districtg@houstontx.gov, districth@houstontx.gov, districti@houstontx.gov, districtj@houstontx.gov, districtk@houstontx.gov, atlarge1@houstontx.gov, atlarge2@houstontx.gov, atlarge3@houstontx.gov, atlarge4@houstontx.gov, atlarge5@houstontx.gov,john.moss@houstontx.gov

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So we have a little intrigue at the palace and it's all about power.  The HAHC are pieces on the board.  This Gafrick has been around too long and I suspect her of pulling most of the strings.  This woman has lied right to CoA applicants faces and then turned tables on them.  (Heck, she lied to all of us and tried to pull a fast one on the windows thing until we shot her down at the PC.)  I have advocated on behalf of various applicants (never pass an opportunity to hone communication skills) and I've heard the stories from contractors representing the little folk up there.  It's like a snake pit...Gafrick has finally run off all the seasoned Planning bureaucrats and has full control over staff, but she has to play the HAHC. 

 

The rat on the Commission is Douglas Elliot....remember the dweeb that shot down Kelman's CoA told her to "go the demo route"?  If you watch the videos month to month you can see a pattern with this guy and his strings go right back to Gafrick.  After all that mess, he felt the pressure (Bucek went to the PC meeting on Elliot's behalf and was roasted for lying) and word was Elliot was stepping down at the end of his term.  So they fill all the term-limited positions first and CM Cohen "understands" from Gafrick that Elliot's position though not term-limited will open up.  Then the snake-charmer finds out who CM Cohen is nominating, and all of a sudden the dweeb is staying put.  I say fine, let's have fun kicking him for another year, making him the YouTube fool.  I wrote in this space almost a year ago that if we wanted to take back our neighborhood we would have to go after these carpet baggers personally.  Well it's time.  Either he goes now under pressure from our email barrage to Council or he goes later, tar, feathers and on a rail.

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Anti-ordinance rhetoric always keeping it classy.

 

Ill take rhetoric over crony-take it or leave politics all day long.  Private property rights were stolen without any possible chance for an individual to opt out or have any recourse against a vocal, well connected, well financed minority of snotty know it all, nitty's.

 

If it takes a little name calling to get enough people fired up so that we can repeal the ordinance and put each one of these crooks out on their ass then so be it!

 

We at least have a 100% honest, intellectually accurate, argument.  The pro-ordinance people lied, cheated, stole their way to victory....If you look at our arguments and you look at your arguments, our arguments are accurate, concise, and consistent.  Your "arguments" throughout this thread have evolved so many times into so many things, that the only thing that we can be certain of is that despite overwhelming evidence of abuse, cronyism, and dirty underhanded tricks, you still blindly support your comrades at the HAHC.

Edited by Marksmu
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Wow, we are making progress with sm...he finally realizes it's the ordinance that is the problem...I am going to get through the inertia of apathy using historically accurate political theatre. Get the pitchforks, Elliot's got to go.

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Anti-ordinance rhetoric always keeping it classy.

 

Classy...   remember your manic rant after the HDs got approved?  I think you gave up all your rights on calling someone else out for not being classy that day.

Edited by SilverJK
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I've always considered taking photos of neighbors' homes in order to snitch them out to be the utmost in classy.

It takes a special kind of class to stick your nose in the lives of others.

loo15lrg._V30722793_.jpg

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Classy...   remember your manic rant after the HDs got approved?  I think you gave up all your rights on calling someone else out for not being classy that day.

 

I was simply making the point that people will remember those who spread the lies about HVAC placement, paint color and false predictions of slums overtaking the Heights with the amended ordinance.  People who fought dirty to try to defeat the ordinance should not just get to wake up the next day like they did nothing wrong.  That is just fundamental fairness.  I never even joked about tar and feathering or called anti-ordinance people Nazis.  That is just typical of the anti-historic rhetoric. 

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I was simply making the point that people will remember those who spread the lies about HVAC placement, paint color and false predictions of slums overtaking the Heights with the amended ordinance.  People who fought dirty to try to defeat the ordinance should not just get to wake up the next day like they did nothing wrong.  That is just fundamental fairness.  I never even joked about tar and feathering or called anti-ordinance people Nazis.  That is just typical of the anti-historic rhetoric. 

 

You left out the part where you threatened to make things hard for the opposers.

 

 

Turns out the HVAC Placement wasn't unfounded... nobody thought slums were going to overtake the heights (you just made that up).  Fighting dirty about about an ambigous ordinance that doesn's specifically state things isn't really fighting dirty (trying to stop a Walmart because of a bridge that isn't the only access to the walmart on the other hand... thats dirty).  You have no understanding of the word "fairness".  People joking about tar and feathering are just that... joking.  Your classless moments are actually what you plan on doing or have done.  

 

 I don't think all HD supporters are like that... but you certainly are.  

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That's the problem, you weren't joking. You can call my jokes classless, as they were intended to be such. But when you're serious it's not the post that's classless it's the author.

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Edit: Of the anti-ordinance folks here, who thinks the route to go is to attempt to take back the decision making process by working within the current set-up using political force?  Conversely who thinks the system is stacked internally against us at he local level and repeal is the only hope to save the neighborhood we love and own? We are watching a political faction intent on societal engineering using property law in a city where central zoning is prohibited by law. I really want to hear the pros and cons of both because we can't fight this divided.

 

 

 

The Freak Show continues, time to contact Bradford's committee about Elliot's poor performance...from CM Cohen (emphasis hers):

 

Good Afternoon,

 

Thank you for contacting our office regarding appointments to the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission (HAHC).

 

City Council was previously informed that Position 11 on the HAHC would be open to nominations, as its current member was term-limited. The incumbent was first appointed in 2008 to fill an unexpired term, and then served two full terms after that. However, just this week, City Attorney David Feldman reviewed the ordinance and notified Council that:

 

“Since the limit on consecutive terms [in Sec. 33-212©] specifically refers to full terms, then one could fill an unexpired term and three consecutive full terms, in succession.”

 

Given this new information, and relying on historical precedent, which provides for the re-nomination of existing volunteers, Council Member Cohen will be re-nominating Mr. Doug Elliot to Position 11.

 

Council nominations are considered by the Ethics, Elections, & Council Governance Committee, which is chaired by Council Member Bradford. Like all Council Committee meetings, they are open to the public.

 

We regret any inconvenience or confusion to interested parties caused by the erroneous information originally provided to us. If you should have any additional questions, please contact our office.

 

Sincerely,

 

Office of Council Member Cohen

District C

832-393-3004

Edited by fwki
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That's the problem, you weren't joking. You can call my jokes classless, as they were intended to be such. But when you're serious it's not the post that's classless it's the author.

 

Any more personal remarks and the topic closes. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Here is your chance to share your experience/opinion of the Historic District process with City Council.  Council Member Pennington asked how the new districts are operating at the May 1 City Council meeting. The mayor said "amazingly well." She said she would ask the Director of Planning to give City Council a report on how the new districts are operating. While I think it will be good to have the Planning department assess themselves, I also think it is important for our elected officials to hear from us: the homeowners. I want to collect ALL feedback - both good and bad to share with them. We are the ones that voted (or didn't vote) to make our neighborhoods protected, and we bear the consequences of that choice. Therefore, since there has been a few years of run-time, and since Council Member Pennington asked, I'd like to provide him with an answer from each person that has an opinion to share. It is an election year, so hopefully they will want to listen now more than ever.
 

Also, I am going to lunch with Council Member Ellen Cohen next Monday, June 17. She wanted to meet me after her nomination of me to the HAHC fell through, and especially after she heard from so many of you that you think I would be good for the neighborhood (thank you again!). I would like to provide her with a stack of people’s personal stories of their experience – both good and bad, so our voices as homeowners can be heard.

 

Please send me an email with your story no later than Sunday, June 16, so I have time to print before lunch with CM Cohen. It can be short and sweet or full of as many gory details as you’d like. You can choose to remain anonymous, or put your name and contact info – I will leave that completely up to you. I promise that I will not include your email address if you do not want me to. The only thing that would be good to have is what district you are in, but if you don’t want to share - no worries (Council Member Cohen is District C; click here for a map of the districts http://www.houstontx.gov/council/2012maps.html). Even if you don’t have personal experience, please feel free to write something you’d like them to hear – I will give them everything anyone sends me.

 

Send to: briekelman@gmail.com

Subject: HAHC Feedback

 

Thanks again for all your help, and sorry if you are tired of hearing from me! I started to lay low for a few weeks, as this was starting to really get to me. But after seeing that video linked below the other night, I feel like it is my duty as a citizen of our neighborhood to at least tell the honest truth about the facts from the people that actually live here and bear the costs. (I realize that sounds incredibly cheesy, but it is truly how I feel).

 

Kind Regards,

Brie Kelman

 

p.s. To be clear, I very much support Historic Preservation (I would not have bought 2 homes built in 1920 if I didn’t). I also support legal documents and homeowners’ rights and am here because I truly believe that the process can be improved.

 

May 1 City Council Meeting:

      http://houstontx.swagit.com/play/05012013-504

  • Click:  Items 1 - 4" on the right
  • Fastforward to the 8:56 min mark – it is only ~2 minutes long
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I hope everyone who has been through the COA process takes the time to give feedback to City Council through briekel because from what I see going down, Council is completely out of the loop on this monster they created.  The Mayor sees to it that Gafrick filters all communication coming out of Planning, so if you don't bypass the system and communicate directly you won't know who to vote for in November.  Some in this group think the process is no problema, some like me think it's the biggest hosing any property owner in Houston could endure.  But I just see the horrific meetings and many posters here don't even watch those, so how bad or good is it?  What does it cost it in extra time, treasure and control of your dreams?  Is the staff professional?  Does the Director of Planning really lie right to owners' faces like she did in the town hall meetings?  If it is as bad as I suspect, then a stack of emails delivered directly to Council will force accountability.  Then we will see where each of these politicians stands.  If everything is going swimmingly, then Parker was right on May 1.

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  • 2 weeks later...

In cases no one noticed, the slippery slope on adverse behavior by the HAHC continued at the June meeting.  The HAHC, all decked out with their new doozy of a Chair, disregarded Planning staff's recommendation, long-set precedent and other rulings that very day in DENYING a CoA for an addition on Harvard Street due to gut feeling on size.  Of course they were led by foremost social engineer Doug Elliot.  When will the citizens have enough of governance by unelected prima donnas or being Wayne Brady's <delicate flower>?

 

Edited by fwki
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That video is sickening....Clearly property owners are not as learned as those who sit on that board.  With all the crime in the neighborhood, one can only hope and pray that a bunch of thugs dont rent a bulldozer and destroy this home in its entirety over a weekend!  The crime has gotten so bad, that I fear that once they have removed everything of value the only thing left to do that would shock people anymore would be to totally destroy the house to prevent those nice, wealthy families from improving the entire neighborhood with a great addition.  Damn criminals.

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I talked to a neighbor this past weekend who was a huge supporter of the ordinance. When it came time to get approval to tear down their old detached garage and build a new garage with apartment, they were denied a CoA by the HAHC because the garage was "too big". Keep in mind that the garage was going to be built along the rear property line and was not attached to the existing house whatsoever. Still denied. They were eventually approved for a smaller structure, but it took them 5 months to get the approval.

 

That's one less HD supporter.

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Its funny how short sighted, or just flat uninformed, misinformed, and in many cases just flat out dumb so many of the ordinance supporters really are...did they really think it would never apply to them?  All because of the alleged townhome monster about to eat the heights!   So many people supported the ordinance only to find it now contains things that they don't approve of....Pretty much followed the exact trend of the current state of politics.   The government is no longer working for the people.  The vocal minority has too much power.

 

 

 

 

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Same meeting approved two of the four new-builds for the corner of 13th & Ashland.

 

These will be 2-1/2 story, 4100 s.f. houses on 6600 s.f. lots.

 

For new construction, the ordinance requires (among other things) that:

 

The proportions of the new construction, including width and roofline, must be compatible with the typical proportions of existing contributing structures and objects in the historic district;

 

The height of the eaves of a new construction intended for use for residential purposes must not be taller than the typical height of the eaves 
of existing contributing structures used for residential purposes in the historic district;

 

 

These houses will be 38-ft in width, and 22-ft eave height, neither of which are "typical" of nearby contributing structures.  All of the contributing houses on this block are single-story (eave height <15-ft) and of modest width (<30-ft).

 

HCAD lists 16 homes on the 1300 block of Ashland, 7 of which are under 2000 s.f., and two more are just over.  Only one home is significantly above 3000 s.f. (there is one other listed at ~3500 s.f., but most of that is in the form of a detached garage apt.; the main house is a small 1-story cottage). Neither of the houses listed above 3000 s.f. are contributing.

 

When completed, these homes will be the 4 largest on the block.  HAHC was apparently unconcerned about these being excessive in size.  

 

 

1811 Harvard, on the other hand, is a pretty typical "camelback" addition to an existing structure. Lots of compatible examples can be found.

 

Now, aesthetically, I generally prefer the look of a "lot-line monstrosity" like 1309 Ashland to that of a "humper house" like 1811 Harvard, but, as written, the ordinance is pretty clear that the latter should be approved and the former denied.  HAHC just did the exact opposite.

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I talked to a neighbor this past weekend who was a huge supporter of the ordinance. When it came time to get approval to tear down their old detached garage and build a new garage with apartment, they were denied a CoA by the HAHC because the garage was "too big". Keep in mind that the garage was going to be built along the rear property line and was not attached to the existing house whatsoever. Still denied. They were eventually approved for a smaller structure, but it took them 5 months to get the approval.

 

That's one less HD supporter.

 

And I was talking to a friend who lives in the HD in Woodland Heights.  She said that she is so glad that she lives in an HD after seeing what they are building on Morrison.  She said that lots of people just outside the Woodland Heights HD are scurrying trying to find a way to get included or get another HD set up so they do not end up with another development like the thing on Morrison.

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And I was talking to a friend who lives in the HD in Woodland Heights.  She said that she is so glad that she lives in an HD after seeing what they are building on Morrison.  She said that lots of people just outside the Woodland Heights HD are scurrying trying to find a way to get included or get another HD set up so they do not end up with another development like the thing on Morrison.

 

Apparantly your lady friend is the typical, uninformed citizen of Houston who jumped immediatlely to the cut-your-nose-off-to-spite-your-face solution that the elites chat about while planning to save the great unwashed.  The brand new Chapter 42 allows two methods for minimum lot size that prevents town homes in established neighborhoods, one block-by-block and one neighborhod scale.  See the redline of Chapter 42 Clause 197 forward: http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/DevelopRegs/docs_pdfs/ch_42_ordinance_redline.pdf .  That's the easiest solution and it does not hand over control of your property to a panel of freaks on a power trip.

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And I was talking to a friend who lives in the HD in Woodland Heights.  She said that she is so glad that she lives in an HD after seeing what they are building on Morrison.  She said that lots of people just outside the Woodland Heights HD are scurrying trying to find a way to get included or get another HD set up so they do not end up with another development like the thing on Morrison.

 

As an active member in Woodland Heights, but outside of the HD lines.  I call BS.  I haven't heard the first person scurrying about, (even at a recent block party...eek!)

 

I'm betting "she" is only speaking for herself.  What is definitely happening are people discussing how to ensure not to get added to the HD. 

 

 

I have heard of a few people pushing for minimal set back and lot size though.

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And I was talking to a friend who lives in the HD in Woodland Heights.  She said that she is so glad that she lives in an HD after seeing what they are building on Morrison.  She said that lots of people just outside the Woodland Heights HD are scurrying trying to find a way to get included or get another HD set up so they do not end up with another development like the thing on Morrison.

 

Oh, no doubt. There are several of you people around who think the HD and HAHC are the bees knees until you actually try to get something approved by them. I don't doubt that she thinks it's great since she hasn't had her plans snuffed. Just like you.

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And I was talking to a friend who lives in the HD in Woodland Heights.  She said that she is so glad that she lives in an HD after seeing what they are building on Morrison.  She said that lots of people just outside the Woodland Heights HD are scurrying trying to find a way to get included or get another HD set up so they do not end up with another development like the thing on Morrison.

 

I call BS too - I spoke with 5 people, all in the new historic districts at a party the other night.  One was very frustrated about not getting approved for his second go around.  I had told him prior to the HD being finalized that he needed to pay attention and get involved.  He was too busy to be bothered.  Now he has a newborn, and the 1100sq ft well maintained shack is not cutting it.  He has been denied his improvement twice and now he cares.

 

The other 4 folks were not even aware that they were in historic districts at all....One just completely redid his front porch without a COA 2 sundays ago, and apparently got away with it.  He had no idea that he was even in a district let alone that what he did to his porch would never pass approval.  Lucky for him he got it done without getting caught.   When they finally found out what the district and the ordinance was, nobody wanted it, and all 4 of these folks are big government liberal lawyers....

 

There is pretty much nobody with a brain left supporting this thing.  Anyone who is paying attention knows it bad.  Those who wont admit it are willfully blind, or one of the folks who want it b/c without it they wont be able to afford to stay in their house much longer because of the pace of improvements prior to it.

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Apparantly your lady friend is the typical, uninformed citizen of Houston who jumped immediatlely to the cut-your-nose-off-to-spite-your-face solution that the elites chat about while planning to save the great unwashed.  The brand new Chapter 42 allows two methods for minimum lot size that prevents town homes in established neighborhoods, one block-by-block and one neighborhod scale.  See the redline of Chapter 42 Clause 197 forward: http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/DevelopRegs/docs_pdfs/ch_42_ordinance_redline.pdf .  That's the easiest solution and it does not hand over control of your property to a panel of freaks on a power trip.

 

Minimum lot size does nothing to prevent someone from putting up this thing in your back yard:  http://www.morrison-heights.com/

 

And minimum lot size only works if you can get enough people to sign up.  If investors own the majority of the lots on a block, you have no shot at getting the restriction.  Take a look at what is going on on Allston down by 6th st. to see how well minimum lot size works.  Minimum lot size is just the favorite lie of the anti-ordinance folks to try to sucker people into thinking that they should give up the protection of the HDs, much like the lies about HVAC placement, paint color and the Heights turning into a slum because everyone would just let their properties rot instead of trying to get a COA.  The fact is that with every abusive development that goes up, more and more people are realizing that the HDs are the only thing that keeps their neighborhood from becoming pocked with midrises and townhomes. 

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And minimum lot size only works if you can get enough people to sign up.  If investors own the majority of the lots on a block, you have no shot at getting the restriction. 

 

 

Which is exactly the way it should work... the people that OWN the lots should decide. Not YOU!

 

 

 

If you can't get enough people to sign those...(or its just soo hard) then where is all the Ordinance Support you speak of.  Surely anyone willing to support the ordinance would also support min lot size.

Edited by SilverJK
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s3mh is clearly of the mindset that, since most people are too stupid to know what is good for them, government should simply do it for them. He has done more to alert me of the dangers of not monitoring activists than anyone else. This dude's views are truly scary in their overarching scope. I use this thread to educate my neighbors to the perils of letting "true believers" run wild.

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RedScare is clearly of the mindset that, since most people are too stupid to know what is good for them, developers should simply do it for them. He has done more to alert me of the dangers of not monitoring activists than anyone else. This dude's views are truly scary in their overarching scope. I use this thread to educate my neighbors to the perils of letting "free marketers" run wild.

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RedScare is clearly of the mindset that, since most people are too stupid to know what is good for them, developers should simply do it for them. He has done more to alert me of the dangers of not monitoring activists than anyone else. This dude's views are truly scary in their overarching scope. I use this thread to educate my neighbors to the perils of letting "free marketers" run wild.

 

The HAHC is not shutting down developers.  The developers just quit buying the lots in the district.  Its harming homeowners, people who bought a house that was free from government intrusion and then had their development rights stolen from them by a bunch of arrogant, snotty politicians and neighbors.  I don't really sympathize with those who bought into the districts AFTER the ordinance went into effect, but those like me, and Red, whose development rights were literally stolen, so that a minority of very vocal residents can participate in a social experiment in creating their own personal utopia at the expense of others.

 

There is very very little support for the ordinance and the districts now, but until we get a new mayor its pointless to fight.  When Parker goes, the districts will follow her and we can abolish this monstrosity.  The irony is that once the ordinance is fully repealed, the developers will raze every home they can as fast as they can in fear of a new ordinance being reinstated.  It will produce exactly the opposite effect that was intended and more old homes will be demolished.

 

Like it or not, your views are radical.  Those of the free market, and private property, are NOT radical.  Those are the core values that our founding fathers fought for.  A government that does not intrude and impede its will upon its people.  You sir, are the radical - not those who only wish to protect which is LAWFULLY theirs.  You are clearly far more delusional than we thought.

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s3mh is clearly of the mindset that, since most people are too stupid to know what is good for them, government should simply do it for them. He has done more to alert me of the dangers of not monitoring activists than anyone else. This dude's views are truly scary in their overarching scope. I use this thread to educate my neighbors to the perils of letting "true believers" run wild.

 

This seems accurate.

 

RedScare is clearly of the mindset that, since most people are too stupid to know what is good for them, developers should simply do it for them. He has done more to alert me of the dangers of not monitoring activists than anyone else. This dude's views are truly scary in their overarching scope. I use this thread to educate my neighbors to the perils of letting "free marketers" run wild.

 

This seems inaccurate... Red has been pretty clear about wanting the people to decide for themselves...

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Minimum lot size does nothing to prevent someone from putting up this thing in your back yard:  http://www.morrison-heights.com/

 

 

Actually, this is not quite correct.  While the "condo loophole" existed until several years ago, the current ordinance requires that any lot or tract that was either in use for single family residential purposes or vacant be permitted only for single family residential use. (42-193k)

 

According to the current list of MLS approvals, the eastern face of this block of Morrison St. is covered, with a minimum lot size of 7085 s.f.  The tax records from 2012 show that the lot was then used for single-family residential.  It appears to me that there are reasonable grounds to block the permitting of this project based on the MLS restriction.

 

 

And minimum lot size only works if you can get enough people to sign up.  If investors own the majority of the lots on a block, you have no shot at getting the restriction.  Take a look at what is going on on Allston down by 6th st. to see how well minimum lot size works.  Minimum lot size is just the favorite lie of the anti-ordinance folks to try to sucker people into thinking that they should give up the protection of the HDs, much like the lies about HVAC placement, paint color and the Heights turning into a slum because everyone would just let their properties rot instead of trying to get a COA.  The fact is that with every abusive development that goes up, more and more people are realizing that the HDs are the only thing that keeps their neighborhood from becoming pocked with midrises and townhomes. 

 

I'm confused, as I don't see the 600 block of Allston (or any part of Allston south of 11th St) on the MLS list.

 

As to the comment that MLS only works if you get enough people to sign up, that's exactly the point.  If enough neighbors want to preserve the character of their block face, the restrictions are applied.  If not, it's impossible for a vocal minority to impose restrictions on other people's property.

 

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Actually, this is not quite correct.  While the "condo loophole" existed until several years ago, the current ordinance requires that any lot or tract that was either in use for single family residential purposes or vacant be permitted only for single family residential use. (42-193k)

 

According to the current list of MLS approvals, the eastern face of this block of Morrison St. is covered, with a minimum lot size of 7085 s.f.  The tax records from 2012 show that the lot was then used for single-family residential.  It appears to me that there are reasonable grounds to block the permitting of this project based on the MLS restriction.

 

I'm confused, as I don't see the 600 block of Allston (or any part of Allston south of 11th St) on the MLS list.

 

As to the comment that MLS only works if you get enough people to sign up, that's exactly the point.  If enough neighbors want to preserve the character of their block face, the restrictions are applied.  If not, it's impossible for a vocal minority to impose restrictions on other people's property.

 

Sub (3), the condo loophole, is what I am talking about. There are a lot of old garden style multifamilies and warehouses in the Heights that can be demoed and built into Morrison-esque mid rises even with the MLS.

I meant Rutland instead of Allston. But there are townhomes planned for Allston too.

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Sub (3), the condo loophole, is what I am talking about. There are a lot of old garden style multifamilies and warehouses in the Heights that can be demoed and built into Morrison-esque mid rises even with the MLS....

 

Now you see his overreach, now he wants a MAXIMUM lot size too.....that way the nasty vermin-infested fire trap garden-style multi-families will never get converted to new multi-family.  But it shows his duplicity.  It just kills these freaks that they don't have a time machine to actualy set back the Heights to the first 1000 all white families, just skip over the post-war era multi-family 50+ year-old stuff and all the racial/ethnic integration that went with it.  These hateful elitists would love to have the original Deed Restrictions back too with the "Coloreds must reside in the Servant's Quarters and only work in the front house" clause. 

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Sub (3), the condo loophole, is what I am talking about. There are a lot of old garden style multifamilies and warehouses in the Heights that can be demoed and built into Morrison-esque mid rises even with the MLS.

I meant Rutland instead of Allston. But there are townhomes planned for Allston too.

 

Mutlifamily or townhomes would be every bit as consistant with the neighborhood as 4,000 sq. ft. HAHC approved mc mansions. 

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Just as a general comment - I think that builders ARE agressively buying lots in the HDs.  In fact, they are even buying 2-1 bungalows on spec in hopes that they will get their "camelback" addition approved.   Sure it's a lot harder and takes a lot longer to get something "sellable" but they are still doing it and there is little to no inventory in the Heights right now.

 

The house next to mine was just sold to a developer in fact.  She must be pretty savy about the process because what she has done is bought the house, and gotten a 6-month lease w/ a renter.  This will provide income while she gets the addition design through the CoA process.

 

In my mind what the ordinance has effectively done is kept developers from buying lots w/ old bungalows on them and tearing down the bungalow to build a 5,000 sf lotline to lotline house - and I'm OK with that.

 

I'm not saying there isn't a problem w/ the process because there is - the board needs to follow their own rules and enforce them consistently EVERY time.  What a "market" hates is uncertainty.

 

Cheers
James

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Now you see his overreach, now he wants a MAXIMUM lot size too.....that way the nasty vermin-infested fire trap garden-style multi-families will never get converted to new multi-family.  But it shows his duplicity.  It just kills these freaks that they don't have a time machine to actualy set back the Heights to the first 1000 all white families, just skip over the post-war era multi-family 50+ year-old stuff and all the racial/ethnic integration that went with it.  These hateful elitists would love to have the original Deed Restrictions back too with the "Coloreds must reside in the Servant's Quarters and only work in the front house" clause. 

Wow. This is totally coo coo for cocoa puffs crazy. If you want a diversity killer, put in a mid rise multifamily with rent starting at $1,500 for a 600 sq ft one bedroom apartment. The old multifamily apartments are way more accessible to the low and middle income earners. But in all candor, with or without the ordinance, the Heights will gentrify in a big way and will become much less diverse regardless of whether it is lot line 4500 sq ft creole new construction and 5-6 story multifamily or well preserved bungalows and the conversion of old garden style multifamily into single family lots. But, when you equate an architectural committee with the Nazis without blinking, drawing comparisons to the Klan is actually an improvement.

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Just as a general comment - I think that builders ARE agressively buying lots in the HDs.  In fact, they are even buying 2-1 bungalows on spec in hopes that they will get their "camelback" addition approved.   Sure it's a lot harder and takes a lot longer to get something "sellable" but they are still doing it and there is little to no inventory in the Heights right now.

 

The house next to mine was just sold to a developer in fact.  She must be pretty savy about the process because what she has done is bought the house, and gotten a 6-month lease w/ a renter.  This will provide income while she gets the addition design through the CoA process.

 

In my mind what the ordinance has effectively done is kept developers from buying lots w/ old bungalows on them and tearing down the bungalow to build a 5,000 sf lotline to lotline house - and I'm OK with that.

 

I'm not saying there isn't a problem w/ the process because there is - the board needs to follow their own rules and enforce them consistently EVERY time.  What a "market" hates is uncertainty.

 

Cheers

James

 

 

I think that the HD market is kinda on ice right now.  (meaning on hold).  As you metioned, the lady rented out her house while they get the CoA process going.  I know a handfull of people that own properties in HDs and many of them have moved out and leased their houses instead of selling because they feel they will not get as much money right  now.  Almost every house I know of in this situation is a livable 2/1 or 3/1s that need renovation but are in decent shape.  Outside of the HD these houses sell like hotcakes.  I'm on the verge of listing my house which would fit in that category.  Summer is also a typical low inventory time of year, and with the high turnover of listed properties within the heights I think that exaggerates the issue here.  I think August/September are going to be a wild time for lower end homes outside of the HDs, while HD homes will continue to be more valuable to lease and will hold out until something changes.  (removal of HD, or value rises enough to make worth selling).   I would be interested in seeing the change in rental vs. owner occupied homes in HDs since inception and over the next few years.

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.....But, when you equate an architectural committee with the Nazis without blinking, drawing comparisons to the Klan is actually an improvement.

 

Hey Walter, your over-active ego is skipping beats again, but when you falsely accuse a man of German Jewish heritage of making light of Nazis you show your elitist WASP colors.  But I forgive you because you really believe all the crap in your head, including the falsity you spewed just now and all the lies you pack into your posts.  I really feel sorry for you.  With your grandiosity always on display, it is evident you suffer from a narcissistic personality disorder that forced a connection between those posts made about Nazis and the HAHC and the latest poster to call you out, who happens to be a direct descedant of German Jews.  And your reference to the Klan fits right in with your desires for a perfect world, wholly populated by............you.

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I think that the HD market is kinda on ice right now.  (meaning on hold).  As you metioned, the lady rented out her house while they get the CoA process going.  I know a handfull of people that own properties in HDs and many of them have moved out and leased their houses instead of selling because they feel they will not get as much money right  now.  Almost every house I know of in this situation is a livable 2/1 or 3/1s that need renovation but are in decent shape.  Outside of the HD these houses sell like hotcakes.  I'm on the verge of listing my house which would fit in that category.  Summer is also a typical low inventory time of year, and with the high turnover of listed properties within the heights I think that exaggerates the issue here.  I think August/September are going to be a wild time for lower end homes outside of the HDs, while HD homes will continue to be more valuable to lease and will hold out until something changes.  (removal of HD, or value rises enough to make worth selling).   I would be interested in seeing the change in rental vs. owner occupied homes in HDs since inception and over the next few years.

I think you are completely wrong. The only thing you are right about is that people are leasing. But that is because it is a great investment if you are selling and can buy another house without needing the proceeds of the sale of the previous house. Sales inside the HDs are only being tempered by the unmitigated greed of some realtors who tell their clients that they can get off the charts prices for their homes instead of just getting them a semi-obscene markup from where prices were just a year ago. On my side of the HDs on Tulane St. alone, three fixer upper (as in needing to be gutted and completely redone) properties got bought up and one vacant lot was purchased in a split of an old odd rental property. New construction just finished on the 1300 block of Tulane and a big addition is going up on the 1400 block. The warehouse on 1305 Ashland got demoed and has two approved plans for the first of four planned homes. There is also a huge addition underway in the 1300 block of Ashland and new construction of a monster house almost finished on the 1400 block. Up the street, in the 1500 block, two new construction homes are going in where they demo-ed that weird old mult-ifamily thing. A 2-1 in need of a total redo in the 1500 block also just sold in a flash after listing at $315k (I heard it was a bid up AS IS sale). And there is a big addition going in on W 15 and a smaller redo/addition on W 13th. If this is on ice, I would hate to see what on fire looks like.

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I think you are completely wrong. The only thing you are right about is that people are leasing. But that is because it is a great investment if you are selling and can buy another house without needing the proceeds of the sale of the previous house. Sales inside the HDs are only being tempered by the unmitigated greed of some realtors who tell their clients that they can get off the charts prices for their homes instead of just getting them a semi-obscene markup from where prices were just a year ago. On my side of the HDs on Tulane St. alone, three fixer upper (as in needing to be gutted and completely redone) properties got bought up and one vacant lot was purchased in a split of an old odd rental property. New construction just finished on the 1300 block of Tulane and a big addition is going up on the 1400 block. The warehouse on 1305 Ashland got demoed and has two approved plans for the first of four planned homes. There is also a huge addition underway in the 1300 block of Ashland and new construction of a monster house almost finished on the 1400 block. Up the street, in the 1500 block, two new construction homes are going in where they demo-ed that weird old mult-ifamily thing. A 2-1 in need of a total redo in the 1500 block also just sold in a flash after listing at $315k (I heard it was a bid up AS IS sale). And there is a big addition going in on W 15 and a smaller redo/addition on W 13th. If this is on ice, I would hate to see what on fire looks like.

 

uhm, that really isn't that much movement you speak of.  8 houses in the 20 closest to me have underwent rennovations in the past 2 years outside of HDs.  Big whoop. 

 

I'm definitely not completely wrong...  lets just say I'm directly impacted by the sales of some of these properties.  Increase in rental is common indication of holding pattern BTW.  Oh and a 2/1 in need of total redo near me just sold for 345k on a smallish lot (5500),   so the 2-1 you speak of sounds like it was hurt by being in the HD. 

 

Also, the example you give doesn't change what I said any... or even counter argue it.  People are holding on to their property of small bungalows within HDs right now.  Big rennovations are going to happen, new construction will happen on empty lots or commercial lots that have likely long been owned by investors, the sale of entry level bungalows though has stalled out, as people don't want to take a loss while their outside of HD comparables are making huge profits.  ( I know someone who is going to clear a 50% profit in their 2/1.5 that they haven't even lived in for 4 years yet outside of an HD)  That scenario does not exist (or at least I haven't seen a single example) within the HDs.

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Since I am moving out of the Heights, I would sell my rental in the Heights if the market in the district was as good as the market out.  I also firmly believe that people are getting more and more frustrated with the ordinance and that it will eventually be repealed.  Since the rental is leased, and has been very easy to lease, I will leave it as a rental and just roll the dice on whether or not the ordinance gets repealed.

 

I generally do not like to own rentals more than a couple miles from where I live unless its on my way to work, since the Heights will soon no longer fit that bill, I would prefer to sell - but I firmly believe my value has been impacted and thus Im going to hold out and hope for repeal.

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