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Height Boulevard - Bricked?


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I noticed at the intersection of 11th and Heights that the construction reveals a layer of brick about six inches down. I'm surprised those weren't pulled up when it was paved at some point. I bet it looked pretty neat if the whole length was bricked. Anyway, thought it was a neat glimpse at the past...

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I noticed at the intersection of 11th and Heights that the construction reveals a layer of brick about six inches down. I'm surprised those weren't pulled up when it was paved at some point. I bet it looked pretty neat if the whole length was bricked. Anyway, thought it was a neat glimpse at the past...

I have a gravel driveway at my house. I dug up some of the gravel to do some landscaping and found a brick driveway about 4-5 inches down. The bricks seemed to match the bricks that were used on some of the old piers for my bungalow. Not sure whether they are from 1920, but definitely not recent.

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I've noticed that as well (the brick on Heights).. I wonder if the rail from the old street cars is still under there as well..

It would be cool if Heights had it's original brick restored, but I'm sure the durability and maintainability of asphalt is much cheaper..

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There used to be a big pothole on Heights southbound near 5th where you could see the bricks, I almost ate it there on the bike a couple times. I'd be fine with doing it in brick. People already drive slow as hell down Heights, it wouldn't have any impact. Weird how people constantly drive under the speed limit on Heights, but want to drag race down Yale.

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There used to be a big pothole on Heights southbound near 5th where you could see the bricks, I almost ate it there on the bike a couple times. I'd be fine with doing it in brick. People already drive slow as hell down Heights, it wouldn't have any impact. Weird how people constantly drive under the speed limit on Heights, but want to drag race down Yale.

Not weird. Heights is pleasant and people like to prolong the experience; Yale is largely a 25-block long eyesore, and people want to end the experience as quickly as possible.

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Not to mention that Heights is one lane each way, flanked by a heavily used bike lane and jogging path crawling with ipoded joggers, baby strollers, and speedwalking seniors. Circumstances often require something less than posted speeds.

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I've noticed that as well (the brick on Heights).. I wonder if the rail from the old street cars is still under there as well..

I remember reading someplace that all the old streetcar tracks in Houston were pulled up during WWII as part of The War Effort. A lot of fancy wrought iron fences in The Heights were melted down as well. Hanging on to anything that could be re-purposed for our troops was considered unpatriotic.

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There are a few brick streets in Houston. Eagle Street (just north of Sears, on Main) is still brick.

The Cherryhurst section of the Montrose jealously maintains its brick streets. The 4th Ward still has a few brick streets; some people say that the African-American residents who built them integrated unique ancestral patterns into their design. At any rate, they are (IMHO) very attractive.

In other cities, brick paving is still used in areas which are subject to heavy vehicles and traffic, such as bus stops. Obviously, constructing brick streets is labor intensive, but they seem to be more durable than blacktop.

Thoughts?

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I remember reading someplace that all the old streetcar tracks in Houston were pulled up during WWII as part of The War Effort. A lot of fancy wrought iron fences in The Heights were melted down as well. Hanging on to anything that could be re-purposed for our troops was considered unpatriotic.

I was thinking the same thing, would have thought the tracks would have been pulled up for melting, for the war effort. Heard my grandmother's stories of how everything was rationed.

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In other cities, brick paving is still used in areas which are subject to heavy vehicles and traffic, such as bus stops. Obviously, constructing brick streets is labor intensive, but they seem to be more durable than blacktop.

Thoughts?

I agree that brick roads are more attractive and offer a greater variety, in color, patterns, etc. that's opinion though.

as far as quality, the construction of the road is crucial for the ability of it to withstand heavier loads. in Europe quite a few high traffic areas are brick roads (and they carry tour buses in addition to their own metro, and other commercial trucks), so brick, if constructed properly should be able to withstand some punishment.

I'm sure there are studies done, but my own thoughts are that probably a lot of the cost of brick roads is in the initial cost, and that maintaining is easier/cheaper than filling in potholes, or resurfacing every few years. since a pothole in brick can be fixed by pulling up some brick in a localized area, settling the base, and then putting the brick back on.

I'd imagine though, that if the city is creating historic districts, that the roadways, signs, sidewalks, and whatnot would have to conform to the same historic regulations, and approval process as the residences in the area, so who knows, that area may be brick again?

I know personally, if my house was going to be put under the microscope as it seems that people who live in those historic districts will, I would do everything I could to see that the city would have to abide by the same guidelines.

Edited by samagon
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  • 10 years later...
On 10/5/2010 at 4:40 PM, s3mh said:

I have a gravel driveway at my house. I dug up some of the gravel to do some landscaping and found a brick driveway about 4-5 inches down. The bricks seemed to match the bricks that were used on some of the old piers for my bungalow. Not sure whether they are from 1920, but definitely not recent.

I remember the original brick Boulevard from the late 40's and early 50's. It was beautiful. When it was paved over in the 50's, both the brick and the trolley tracks were covered. 

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On 10/5/2010 at 4:45 PM, Zippy said:

I've noticed that as well (the brick on Heights).. I wonder if the rail from the old street cars is still under there as well..

It would be cool if Heights had it's original brick restored, but I'm sure the durability and maintainability of asphalt is much cheaper..

Yes, although paved over with the brick, they are still there. 

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On 10/8/2010 at 5:50 PM, silverartfox said:

I remember reading someplace that all the old streetcar tracks in Houston were pulled up during WWII as part of The War Effort. A lot of fancy wrought iron fences in The Heights were melted down as well. Hanging on to anything that could be re-purposed for our troops was considered unpatriotic.

I lived in The Heights from birth in 1945 until I went into the USAF in 1966. I can assure you that the tracks were not removed. They were still there when the Boulevard was paved over in the 1950's.

 

On 10/5/2010 at 4:40 PM, s3mh said:

I have a gravel driveway at my house. I dug up some of the gravel to do some landscaping and found a brick driveway about 4-5 inches down. The bricks seemed to match the bricks that were used on some of the old piers for my bungalow. Not sure whether they are from 1920, but definitely not recent.

 

On 10/5/2010 at 4:45 PM, Zippy said:

I've noticed that as well (the brick on Heights).. I wonder if the rail from the old street cars is still under there as well..

It would be cool if Heights had it's original brick restored, but I'm sure the durability and maintainability of asphalt is much cheaper..

 

On 10/8/2010 at 5:50 PM, silverartfox said:

I remember reading someplace that all the old streetcar tracks in Houston were pulled up during WWII as part of The War Effort. A lot of fancy wrought iron fences in The Heights were melted down as well. Hanging on to anything that could be re-purposed for our troops was considered unpatriotic.

 

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