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The Mix: Mixed-Use Project Planned for two blocks in Midtown (formerly 3001 Louisiana)

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Oh, so you found something about it using both Google and Yahoo? ;-)

Nope, from talking to folks in the know that were here and in business when it was all going on.

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You mentioned Archstone in Memorial Heights, but it's going to be recycled over about the next ten years into new higher-density housing.

It seems unlikely that the Midtown Management District will be collecting tax revenues from properties owned by the Houston Community College System. Government-owned properties are not taxed.

In time, it may behoove you to try and create an independent identity for east Midtown. Whether you like it or not, you are going to get associated with discussions about Midtown issues.

On the first point, this is what I was trying to get to... Yes, these properties will decline eventually... BUT their location will cause them to be recycled (just like you said about Archstone). Also, even if the apts decline some and rents go down... there will still be people living in them with retail on the bottom. Who knows, there might be more (and better) retail filling in underneath those places (middle income folks have to eat too). Also, I highly doubt declines in those apartments will ever be that dramatic. Heck, you can walk from your apartment right into downtown in a matter of minutes... you can't do that anywhere else in Houston.

On your second point, I attended a public forum w/ HCC and the MMD last month and HCC said that they finally joined the MMD, and joked that "I'm sure you MMD guys are glad to start collecting our money!" I was surprised by this too, but my guess is they joined because of something related to my third point...

Third, the MMD (and why East Midtown shouldn't form it's own entity) is going to be investing heavily on infrastructure improvements to East Midtown soon. They will be redoing all of Caroline from HCC to Elgin to make it a "grand entranceway to HCC", and after that phase redo all of Caroline from Elgin to Pierce. They are also working on McGowen right now, and will soon be doing Gray as well. They will also be redoing Alabama from Main eastward touching the bottom of HCC.

Edited by brian0123

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I'm not going to say that that's an impossibility, but I hadn't heard about it before now, and both sides of Westcreek were built exactly the same.

Hmm, I'll beg to differ on that point... The section of Westcreek Apts. that faces either side of Westcreek Lane is courtyard-style, basically several rectangular apartment buildings, each surrounding a pool area; the side with the entrance on Westheimer (Formerly Avalon Square) is not -- more of a snake of building(s). There were other differences too (the actual units are quite different), but that's the main one. I lived on the former Avalon Square side back in the mid-'90s, my wife then lived on the Westcreek side. There was even a fence between the two (though the fence was opened to connect the two parking lots). Maybe we're talking about two different things? Could Westcreek actually be three complexes now?? (To clarify -- I'm not talking about the east side of Westcreek Ln. versus the West Side... The old Avalon Square is behind the apartments that line the East side of Westcreek Ln.)

Edited by MyEvilTwin

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On the first point, this is what I was trying to get to... Yes, these properties will decline eventually... BUT their location will cause them to be recycled (just like you said about Archstone). Also, even if the apts decline some and rents go down... there will still be people living in them with retail on the bottom. Who knows, there might be more (and better) retail filling in underneath those places (middle income folks have to eat too). Also, I highly doubt declines in those apartments will ever be that dramatic. Heck, you can walk from your apartment right into downtown in a matter of minutes... you can't do that anywhere else in Houston.

No, only Archstone Memorial Heights will get recycled. It is truly a real estate anomaly. It has a density of only about 20 units per acre, if I recall correctly, and what is in the works will likely be between 50 and 100 units per acre when all is said and done. That is a level of density that is on par with every single other market-rate apartment complex built in Midtown, Montrose, 4th Ward, Greenway Plaza, Upper Kirby, the River Oaks area, or in the Galleria area since the late 90's, and the only reason that recycling such a recently built property makes sense is that so much additional rentable space can be added to the site. Places like Post Midtown, Camden Travis, The Calais, Ventana Midtown, etc. are essentially permanent; they can be renovated, but that can only delay the inevitable.

If rents go down and Midtown becomes perceived as more middle class, I agree that that's not necessarily bad. Good and bad are entirely subjective. It's good if you're in the middle class and want to live near downtown. It's bad if you're a property owner that thrived on the land values supported by lemming-like yuppies.

But not for the fact that the apartments were so new, the fall of Enron and downsizing among other downtown employers probably would have precipitated just such a decline. By 2002 and 2003, some of these complexes in Midtown and other close-in neighborhoods were dropping rents and offering as much as three months free and a free plasma screen TV. That's pretty crazy. It remains to be seen how bad it'll get this time, but concessions are already on the rise. I'd imagine that older complexes like Camden Midtown will be getting pretty desperate. Still, like I've been saying over and over, Midtown probably has at least another decade in it before architectural styles become inexcusably dated among the hip and trendy crowd; that's when it gets dangerous. Not so much right now.

And if you think proximity to downtown will shield you...let me remind you that there are neighborhoods within walking distance of downtown that are still very shabby. They didn't used to be shabby, but they got that way over time. If it happened once, it can happen again.

On your second point, I attended a public forum w/ HCC and the MMD last month and HCC said that they finally joined the MMD, and joked that "I'm sure you MMD guys are glad to start collecting our money!" I was surprised by this too, but my guess is they joined because of something related to my third point...

Third, the MMD (and why East Midtown shouldn't form it's own entity) is going to be investing heavily on infrastructure improvements to East Midtown soon. They will be redoing all of Caroline from HCC to Elgin to make it a "grand entranceway to HCC", and after that phase redo all of Caroline from Elgin to Pierce. They are also working on McGowen right now, and will soon be doing Gray as well. They will also be redoing Alabama from Main eastward touching the bottom of HCC.

"Joining" does not mean that they are being taxed on the basis of the value of their real or personal property. I would imagine that they pay a voluntary fee.

And I am not suggesting that you break with the Midtown Management District, just that it may at some point (i.e. not necessarily now) be in your best interests to present yourself as being from the quiet and stable part of Midtown, call it whatever you will.

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Nope, from talking to folks in the know that were here and in business when it was all going on.

I think you either misunderstood or your sources were confused.

FWIW, here is what I was talking about. Have never heard of, and can't find anything about, any Enron investments or activities in Midtown.

Enron in east end

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Hmm, I'll beg to differ on that point... The section of Westcreek Apts. that faces either side of Westcreek Lane is courtyard-style, basically several rectangular apartment buildings, each surrounding a pool area; the side with the entrance on Westheimer (Formerly Avalon Square) is not -- more of a snake of building(s). There were other differences too (the actual units are quite different), but that's the main one. I lived on the former Avalon Square side back in the mid-'90s, my wife then lived on the Westcreek side. There was even a fence between the two (though the fence was opened to connect the two parking lots). Maybe we're talking about two different things? Could Westcreek actually be three complexes now?? (To clarify -- I'm not talking about the east side of Westcreek Ln. versus the West Side... The old Avalon Square is behind the apartments that line the East side of Westcreek Ln.)

Ah, ok. I'm with you. All of the former Avalon Square and the southernmost two buildings of the former Westcreek apartments are now part of the same property, owned by OliverMcMillan. I'm familiar with both of the Westcreeks (each of which now front Westcreek Lane in their current configuration), but have never bothered to drive off of Westcreek Lane and just figured that it was more of the same.

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I think you either misunderstood or your sources were confused.

FWIW, here is what I was talking about. Have never heard of, and can't find anything about, any Enron investments or activities in Midtown.

Enron in east end

No, actually I have overhead bits and pieces about this story as well, from entirely different sources.

False choice. Either my sources (who probably don't even have professional contacts in common) are both privy to the same bit of misinformation, or I am confused, or perhaps you just aren't privy to accurate information or aren't researching thoroughly enough. You have good reason to be doubtful, if only because I've already expressed that I didn't bother to investigate the details of the story, but just because you cannot confirm it with a news article does not mean that what little I have stated is not necessarily true.

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No, actually I have overhead bits and pieces about this story as well, from entirely different sources.

False choice. Either my sources (who probably don't even have professional contacts in common) are both privy to the same bit of misinformation, or I am confused, or perhaps you just aren't privy to accurate information or aren't researching thoroughly enough. You have good reason to be doubtful, if only because I've already expressed that I didn't bother to investigate the details of the story, but just because you cannot confirm it with a news article does not mean that what little I have stated is not necessarily true.

LOL Yes, I do have good reason to be doubtful.

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Wow.

Niche has an avatar.

It's happened before, but usually because Editor suggests that I need to liven up my profile, and those instances always seem forced. This one actually represents me pretty well (especially if you're familiar with the character) and just feels right for the moment.

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No, only Archstone Memorial Heights will get recycled. It is truly a real estate anomaly. It has a density of only about 20 units per acre, if I recall correctly, and what is in the works will likely be between 50 and 100 units per acre when all is said and done. That is a level of density that is on par with every single other market-rate apartment complex built in Midtown, Montrose, 4th Ward, Greenway Plaza, Upper Kirby, the River Oaks area, or in the Galleria area since the late 90's, and the only reason that recycling such a recently built property makes sense is that so much additional rentable space can be added to the site. Places like Post Midtown, Camden Travis, The Calais, Ventana Midtown, etc. are essentially permanent; they can be renovated, but that can only delay the inevitable.

Buildings are recycled/demolished all the time. I understand the point you are making, but land is land and a wrecking ball doesn't care what's on top of it. In all of the locations you mentioned, if the companies that own these start to see the decline of their property and determine they can make more money by tearing down and building something else, they will. Yes, they will try to milk every last penny out of it... but being in the loop is a little different than outer loop. There is something to be said about owning/living somewhere that sits directly in the middle of the blob of millions of people that make up Houston and surrounding communities.

And if you think proximity to downtown will shield you...let me remind you that there are neighborhoods within walking distance of downtown that are still very shabby. They didn't used to be shabby, but they got that way over time. If it happened once, it can happen again.

This occurred because of the creation of suburbs...not rundown apartment complexes. We are now seeing the reverse (and will continue to for a long time) where the suburbs are getting cheaper, rundown, and ghetto... and the city is becoming the place to live. Downtown employment might help inner city areas... but I have lots of neighbors that work in the suburbs (my wife does too).

This thread is about The Mix, and Crosspoint has it right. They understand what is happening to our city, and they have built the first phase of something that will one day be bigger than it currently is. One restaurant is already moving in, and the Chron article referenced above sounds as if they have other tenants that will be announced soon (so long as the recession doesn't kill some of these people). Look at the Houston Pavilions... one day we were talking about it being a failure... and the next day it was almost all leased up.

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Buildings are recycled/demolished all the time. I understand the point you are making, but land is land and a wrecking ball doesn't care what's on top of it. In all of the locations you mentioned, if the companies that own these start to see the decline of their property and determine they can make more money by tearing down and building something else, they will. Yes, they will try to milk every last penny out of it... but being in the loop is a little different than outer loop. There is something to be said about owning/living somewhere that sits directly in the middle of the blob of millions of people that make up Houston and surrounding communities.

The economics of demolition are generally not favorable for larger structures. To the extent that such demolition work has been carried out in the recent past, it has either been a special case (such as within the main campus of the TMC) or was a poor financial decision to begin with.

As a general rule, it stops making any sense to replace crappy apartments--in particular--if the existing density exceeds about 45 to 50 units per acre, even in excellent locations. The capitalized value of the income stream for such properties, plus demolition costs, exceeds the value of raw land within that market. Houston has so much underdeveloped land and so few geographic or political barriers to entry that there is no reasonable incentive against the developer going down the street (if the neighborhood with crappy apartments is still desirable for new construction to begin with).

Your comment comparing the desirability of living in the Inner Loop versus within the Beltway is striking. Do you realize that I know of places within Houston's inner loop where I can lease a whole house on a regular size lot for only $500 per month? It's a freestanding structure with a yard and privacy. In Midtown, I might be able to rent a room in an apartment (and would still have to pay utilities). In Memorial or Tanglewood (west of the Inner Loop, within Beltway 8), $500 would get me nowhere. There's all kinds of neighborhoods at all levels of desirability scattered throughout the Houston region. Seeing as only about 6% of Houston's employed persons work downtown, it strikes me that a perceived notion of residential convenience depends entirely on where you work. If you work in The Woodlands, Midtown is probably not going to be nearly as convenient as a physically comparable and less expensive alternative in The Woodlands Town Center development.

This occurred because of the creation of suburbs...not rundown apartment complexes. We are now seeing the reverse (and will continue to for a long time) where the suburbs are getting cheaper, rundown, and ghetto... and the city is becoming the place to live. Downtown employment might help inner city areas... but I have lots of neighbors that work in the suburbs (my wife does too).

I ran a calculation several years back of the aggregate amount of construction as divided out by the Inner Loop, Beltway 8, and the rest of the Houston MSA. For every one housing unit built inside of 610, there were 22 built beyond it. For every one housing unit built within Beltway 8 (incl. the Inner Loop), there were 16 built beyond it. And the further away from the city center that you go, the more fully segmented the market was, providing new housing to all echelons of society, wealthy and poor. Right off that bat, that ought to suggest something about the popularity of urban living. Whereas new construction is concerned, it has a very limited demographic appeal.

But I'm not arguing that the broader concept of urban living is doomed to reversal. I'm saying that there will be individual neighborhoods within the inner city that have been recently built out that are at high risk for reverting to ghetto over the course of two to three decades and that will probably stop being appealing for further development within about 15 years. And I'm saying that Midtown is one of those neighborhoods.

This thread is about The Mix, and Crosspoint has it right. They understand what is happening to our city, and they have built the first phase of something that will one day be bigger than it currently is. One restaurant is already moving in, and the Chron article referenced above sounds as if they have other tenants that will be announced soon (so long as the recession doesn't kill some of these people). Look at the Houston Pavilions... one day we were talking about it being a failure... and the next day it was almost all leased up.

HP's small office component got leased up by a company that is only moving employees out of other buildings downtown. There is no net positive effect on downtown office absorption. And HP's retail component (the part that got public financing) not only faced a difficult roll out, but they've actually lost some of their original tenants. Go walk around over there and tell me that HP isn't a failure.

As for The Mix, Crosspoint are entrepreneurs, not civic-minded urban planners. The Mix may be part of something bigger than itself one day (and as I keep on saying, Midtown still has a good bit of time left in it to continue growing), but that day doesn't matter if there's a foreclosure somewhere in between now and then.

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Your comment comparing the desirability of living in the Inner Loop versus within the Beltway is striking. Do you realize that I know of places within Houston's inner loop where I can lease a whole house on a regular size lot for only $500 per month? It's a freestanding structure with a yard and privacy. In Midtown, I might be able to rent a room in an apartment (and would still have to pay utilities). In Memorial or Tanglewood (west of the Inner Loop, within Beltway 8), $500 would get me nowhere. There's all kinds of neighborhoods at all levels of desirability scattered throughout the Houston region. Seeing as only about 6% of Houston's employed persons work downtown, it strikes me that a perceived notion of residential convenience depends entirely on where you work. If you work in The Woodlands, Midtown is probably not going to be nearly as convenient as a physically comparable and less expensive alternative in The Woodlands Town Center development.

I ran a calculation several years back of the aggregate amount of construction as divided out by the Inner Loop, Beltway 8, and the rest of the Houston MSA. For every one housing unit built inside of 610, there were 22 built beyond it. For every one housing unit built within Beltway 8 (incl. the Inner Loop), there were 16 built beyond it. And the further away from the city center that you go, the more fully segmented the market was, providing new housing to all echelons of society, wealthy and poor. Right off that bat, that ought to suggest something about the popularity of urban living. Whereas new construction is concerned, it has a very limited demographic appeal.

From your statistics, it seems price is not an issue. There are plenty of people who have the money to buy inside the loop that don't. I wonder if in 50 years from now when there might be a more dynamic and more true urban area inside the loop, if those same people who might normally move to the burbs will choose ITL instead?

After all, being ITL isn't THAT much different from being outside the loop. There is some urbanity, but it's really just suburbanism on a denser scale (the main difference IMO). Sure there is proximity to more things, but it's not a humungous difference that the burbs have in comparison. I'm sure there will be those who disagree, but in reality, for instance, it probably takes most ITL people 2-5 mintues to get to a grocery store while 'burbs people it takes 2-10 minutes; maybe 15 at the max. 10 minutes is not really a big deal.

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From your statistics, it seems price is not an issue. There are plenty of people who have the money to buy inside the loop that don't. I wonder if in 50 years from now when there might be a more dynamic and more true urban area inside the loop, if those same people who might normally move to the burbs will choose ITL instead?

Housing preferences are extremely segmented and cannot be generalized. But ultimately, price is the issue.

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HP's small office component got leased up by a company that is only moving employees out of other buildings downtown. There is no net positive effect on downtown office absorption. And HP's retail component (the part that got public financing) not only faced a difficult roll out, but they've actually lost some of their original tenants. Go walk around over there and tell me that HP isn't a failure.

HP's office component's impact on the overall downtown office market is irrelevant to HP's success or failure as a project.

It is WAY too early in HP's life to deem it a failure, especially considering the retail market they happened into.

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Housing preferences are extremely segmented and cannot be generalized. But ultimately, price is the issue.

I'm speaking of the affluent, those who can pretty much live wherever they want, where price is not the main issue for them.

I wonder how many 3-400k+ homes there are in the burbs compared to inside the loop (or close to it on the west side)

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Your comment comparing the desirability of living in the Inner Loop versus within the Beltway is striking. Do you realize that I know of places within Houston's inner loop where I can lease a whole house on a regular size lot for only $500 per month? It's a freestanding structure with a yard and privacy. In Midtown, I might be able to rent a room in an apartment (and would still have to pay utilities). In Memorial or Tanglewood (west of the Inner Loop, within Beltway 8), $500 would get me nowhere. There's all kinds of neighborhoods at all levels of desirability scattered throughout the Houston region. Seeing as only about 6% of Houston's employed persons work downtown, it strikes me that a perceived notion of residential convenience depends entirely on where you work. If you work in The Woodlands, Midtown is probably not going to be nearly as convenient as a physically comparable and less expensive alternative in The Woodlands Town Center development.

First, a $500 house inner loop is not going to be in any type of neighborhood that most people would consider safe (or in a condition someone would really want to live in).

Also, there are places scattered around town with different levels of pricing... and yes, working and living in the Woodlands would be great. The point I was making about my neighbors commuting to the burbs for work is that we are living in a place that provides easy access to ANY employment opportunity this huge city has to offer. If I lived in the Woodlands and lost my Woodlands job, I'm guarantied a long commute to any other employment center. By living in the middle, my commute is relatively the same no matter where I might work in this city.

But I'm not arguing that the broader concept of urban living is doomed to reversal. I'm saying that there will be individual neighborhoods within the inner city that have been recently built out that are at high risk for reverting to ghetto over the course of two to three decades and that will probably stop being appealing for further development within about 15 years. And I'm saying that Midtown is one of those neighborhoods.

That argument is such a generalized statement and can be applied to almost any neighborhood, (especially those built on farm fields in the burbs like those near FM 1960). Almost any neighborhood is at risk of deteriorating. Midtown at least still has the thing that helped bring it out of the ghetto, its TIRZ.

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After all, being ITL isn't THAT much different from being outside the loop. There is some urbanity, but it's really just suburbanism on a denser scale (the main difference IMO). Sure there is proximity to more things, but it's not a humungous difference that the burbs have in comparison. I'm sure there will be those who disagree, but in reality, for instance, it probably takes most ITL people 2-5 mintues to get to a grocery store while 'burbs people it takes 2-10 minutes; maybe 15 at the max. 10 minutes is not really a big deal.

Speaking as someone who has lived his entire life in the burbs and then moved inner loop, I believe there is a huge difference. I guess if you're a homebody that just cares about getting to the grocery store or neighborhood pool, the suburbs are great. However, I never was able to...

- Go to almost any museum, sports event, entertainment option, etc. quickly (heck get anywhere quickly)

- Ride my bike/walk/jog to anywhere worthwhile

- Eat somewhere great that wasn't typically owned by a large chain

- Call the police and have them at my doorstep in four minutes (in the burbs it usually took them about 20 minutes to respond)

I actually sat down and figured out last year that by purchasing in the inner loop, I have bought 2.5 hours of my life back per day (including weekends). This included everything from commuting to work, trips to stores, driving to church, waiting in lines at restaurants, etc.

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Speaking as someone who has lived his entire life in the burbs and then moved inner loop, I believe there is a huge difference. I guess if you're a homebody that just cares about getting to the grocery store or neighborhood pool, the suburbs are great. However, I never was able to...

- Go to almost any museum, sports event, entertainment option, etc. quickly (heck get anywhere quickly)

- Ride my bike/walk/jog to anywhere worthwhile

- Eat somewhere great that wasn't typically owned by a large chain

- Call the police and have them at my doorstep in four minutes (in the burbs it usually took them about 20 minutes to respond)

I actually sat down and figured out last year that by purchasing in the inner loop, I have bought 2.5 hours of my life back per day (including weekends). This included everything from commuting to work, trips to stores, driving to church, waiting in lines at restaurants, etc.

Good points, and I agree, and it all depends on the individuals interests and needs. But what I was getting at is that it's not night and day in Houston. Now comparing a much more dense city to it's own burbs, there's a bigger contrast.

*glad I've never had to find out the response time of an ambulance or police officer yet. (except when in Albuquerque once)

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First, a $500 house inner loop is not going to be in any type of neighborhood that most people would consider safe (or in a condition someone would really want to live in).

Also, there are places scattered around town with different levels of pricing... and yes, working and living in the Woodlands would be great. The point I was making about my neighbors commuting to the burbs for work is that we are living in a place that provides easy access to ANY employment opportunity this huge city has to offer. If I lived in the Woodlands and lost my Woodlands job, I'm guarantied a long commute to any other employment center. By living in the middle, my commute is relatively the same no matter where I might work in this city.

That argument is such a generalized statement and can be applied to almost any neighborhood, (especially those built on farm fields in the burbs like those near FM 1960). Almost any neighborhood is at risk of deteriorating. Midtown at least still has the thing that helped bring it out of the ghetto, its TIRZ.

The point I was making was that the existence of similarly-located neighborhoods with such inexpensive housing suggests that the issue is not a regional one (i.e. urban vs. suburban), but a neighborhood-level issue. Within a mile of where you live is a neighborhood that faces desperate poverty, economic stagnation, and really no hope for the immediate future...even though it is surrounded on its peripheries by two large universities, downtown, the Museum District, the TMC, and nice linear parks. It has easy access to the same regional transportation systems as does Midtown, but it does have better skyline views. Fifteen or twenty years ago, Midtown was not all that dissimilar...and even now, Midtown retains some of its old problems with vagrants, social services, crime, etc. Yet it has experienced a kind of golden age.

Its TIRZ and Management District have helped Midtown--there's no doubt about that--but Midtown is not unique in having both of those entities available to them. There are a total of 22 TIRZs throughout the City of Houston, many of which are geographically larger. And Management Districts are fewer in number, but much larger than the TIRZs. Midtown's is actually one of the smaller Management Districts.

My point in all this is that Midtown is not unique. There is nothing that would keep the 'scene' from migrating as those things that are presently shiny and new begin to look dated. It is not exempt from urban cyclicality.

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My point in all this is that Midtown is not unique. There is nothing that would keep the 'scene' from migrating as those things that are presently shiny and new begin to look dated. It is not exempt from urban cyclicality.

I suppose one unique thing about it is it's between downtown and TMC/Museum district. I guess Montrose/Neartown is close too, but they're not actually in the middle. Although other areas are between downtown and the Galleria, with different ameneties of equal or great value of TMC.

Edited by lockmat

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The point I was making was that the existence of similarly-located neighborhoods with such inexpensive housing suggests that the issue is not a regional one (i.e. urban vs. suburban), but a neighborhood-level issue. Within a mile of where you live is a neighborhood that faces desperate poverty, economic stagnation, and really no hope for the immediate future...even though it is surrounded on its peripheries by two large universities, downtown, the Museum District, the TMC, and nice linear parks. It has easy access to the same regional transportation systems as does Midtown, but it does have better skyline views. Fifteen or twenty years ago, Midtown was not all that dissimilar...and even now, Midtown retains some of its old problems with vagrants, social services, crime, etc. Yet it has experienced a kind of golden age.

Its TIRZ and Management District have helped Midtown--there's no doubt about that--but Midtown is not unique in having both of those entities available to them. There are a total of 22 TIRZs throughout the City of Houston, many of which are geographically larger. And Management Districts are fewer in number, but much larger than the TIRZs. Midtown's is actually one of the smaller Management Districts.

My point in all this is that Midtown is not unique. There is nothing that would keep the 'scene' from migrating as those things that are presently shiny and new begin to look dated. It is not exempt from urban cyclicality.

I agree that Midtown is not completely unique (other than what Lockmat mentioned)... but I think it's crazy to single it out as some sort of a fad that is going to turn into a barbed wire ghetto in 15 years.

As for the other side of 288, I am curious to see how the new rail line impacts development in that neighborhood.

Edited by brian0123

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I agree that Midtown is not completely unique (other than what Lockmat mentioned)... but I think it's crazy to single it out as some sort of a fad that is going to turn into a barbed wire ghetto in 15 years.

As for the other side of 288, I am curious to see how the new rail line impacts development in that neighborhood.

Not to defend Niche, but I think he just means it has potential to be the next "ghetto(don't know if he used that word or not)."

But one thing we do know, it is somewhat of a fad to to live there right now. There probably aren't many native midtowners.

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Not to defend Niche, but I think he just means it has potential to be the next "ghetto(don't know if he used that word or not)."

But one thing we do know, it is somewhat of a fad to to live there right now. There probably aren't many native midtowners.

I understand what he's saying, but you can say that about a lot of places. What about the pricey townhouses (and homes) west of downtown (fourth ward) that happen to have City Vista, AMLI Town Square, the "Bel Air", lower income apartments and housing, even the NW quadrant of Midtown, surrounding it?

It's also a fad to live along Washington now... same with EaDo. Most people living in those townhouses probably wouldn't be considered old residents of the neighborhood either. I have a lot of neighbors that have lived in Midtown for almost ten years. In my book, living somewhere for a decade should make you a native of that neighborhood... not just a fad... or lemming as Niche puts it.

Edited by brian0123
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Not to defend Niche, but I think he just means it has potential to be the next "ghetto(don't know if he used that word or not)."

I'm pretty sure I've used that word, but I've defined it in a pretty forgiving light. Go back and look at the discussion about the Westcreek tenant base as an analog to Midtown's future.

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I understand what he's saying, but you can say that about a lot of places. What about the pricey townhouses (and homes) west of downtown (fourth ward) that happen to have City Vista, AMLI Town Square, the "Bel Air", lower income apartments and housing, even the NW quadrant of Midtown, surrounding it?

It's also a fad to live along Washington now... same with EaDo.

Most consumers evaluating whether to live in Midtown don't have a very good conception of the boundaries and would count City Vista and AMLI Town Square among the Midtown apartments. They certainly affect and are affected by the Midtown market, and that's good enough.

Memorial Heights is at risk too, but such a large portion of it is anomalously recyclable that I suspect that it'll have a few years on Midtown. Otherwise, as I've already pointed out, Washington Avenue lacks any clusters of apartments such as could trigger a demographic meltdown. It's also about three times as large. One end of it could get built up heavily and then go bust and not affect the other section.

EaDo only has one apartment complex (and another couple just to the north that are kinda-sorta associated with it) and otherwise is comprised of innocuous condos and townhomes. There's also a lot more room to fill in before it becomes primed for a bust.

As for the many clusters of townhomes, most neighborhoods have individual houses that aren't well cared for, and they're nuisances but individual homes aren't capable of turning a neighborhood. Predominantly single-family neighborhoods seem to require generational turnover or some factor that prompts a mass exodus. One toxic apartment complex with 300+ units, can create a tenant base that adversely affects perceptions of the neighborhood, its own competitive environment, and neighborhood businesses--especially bars or clubs. That all feeds back on more stable properties and can induce a flight situation over time.

I have a lot of neighbors that have lived in Midtown for almost ten years. In my book, living somewhere for a decade should make you a native of that neighborhood... not just a fad... or lemming as Niche puts it.

By the time that someone has lived in a neighborhood for that long, they're probably over 30...which is to say, they've lost their sex appeal. They're no longer a cool kid, and they won't matter to those who develop dense urbane breeding grounds anymore until some point in their mid-to-late thirties after they've either gotten a divorce. By that time in their career, they're making much more money and are a candidate for more expensive housing than a midrise apartment complex in Midtown such as was built to attract a more youthful version of themselves.

I say this all sort of tongue in cheek, but it's not at all without merit. I myself have put together presentations to put in front of the big money trying to sell them on these kinds of projects, and they consistently respond well to a demographic profile of targeted demographics followed up by overlapping photos of slutty-looking twenty-something females at nearby bars and clubs with their flaming gay friends...not to married 32-year-old home owners (even though the reality is that there are a lot of 30-something tenants). This is why I keep on referring to the importance of the "scene", and it's probably why you keep missing my point. No offense.

Edited by TheNiche

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I have a lot of neighbors that have lived in Midtown for almost ten years. In my book, living somewhere for a decade should make you a native of that neighborhood... not just a fad... or lemming as Niche puts it.

I was just talking about this last weekend with a couple of couples who have ~10 yrs in midtown. both mentioned that generally for them, the new, younger residents moving in are not as stable as those that were there initially. they are experiencing more renters vs owners.

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I was just talking about this last weekend with a couple of couples who have ~10 yrs in midtown. both mentioned that generally for them, the new, younger residents moving in are not as stable as those that were there initially. they are experiencing more renters vs owners.

That's interesting. My wife and I are 25/26 and own. Another couple just moved in near us that is in their 20's and they own. I've heard this complaint on HAIF before, but have yet to encounter the "unstable" renters... maybe my section is different? :huh: If there are a lot of renters vs. owners, then my guess is it's due to the original property owners holding on to their house as an investment as opposed to renting it out of necessity. Every house I've seen go on the market near me has been sold in a couple of weeks.

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Every house I've seen go on the market near me has been sold in a couple of weeks.

It seems unlikely that your observations would match up well against market data.

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Crosspoint is building out an old building a few blocks north on Louisiana in what looks to be a new Mexican restaurant. There is a sign for "Luby Tequila's". I went to the website and it looks like a small chain up in the panhandle. There is also a page for locations showing their future Midtown location.

Nice addition to the area. It surprises me that El Patio has been the only Mexican food restaurant in Midtown for so long.

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Ugh. Further contributing to the suburbanization of Midtown. A low-end, north Texas, tex-mex place?

At least there are still real restaurants there, like Reef and Ibiza and T'afia.

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Ugh. Further contributing to the suburbanization of Midtown. A low-end, north Texas, tex-mex place?

At least there are still real restaurants there, like Reef and Ibiza and T'afia.

Restaurants like Reef are nice, but I'd like to have more affordable (and less fancy, dress up type) places to eat, too. My wife and I are very excited about this.

Edited by brian0123

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Ugh. Further contributing to the suburbanization of Midtown. A low-end, north Texas, tex-mex place?

further proof that people will whine about anything on this board.

people complain when nothing gets built in midtown, then they complain that too many bars and not enough restaurants are being built. Now we have complaints about the origin and price range of the restaurants being built. :)

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Crosspoint is building out an old building a few blocks north on Louisiana in what looks to be a new Mexican restaurant. There is a sign for "Luby Tequila's". I went to the website and it looks like a small chain up in the panhandle. There is also a page for locations showing their future Midtown location.

Nice addition to the area. It surprises me that El Patio has been the only Mexican food restaurant in Midtown for so long.

Cyclone Anaya's?

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Cyclone Anaya's?

I think a low priced mexican joint would do quite well. There are alread enough mid and higher end places to eat there.

If they want more variety or whatever, montrose is only a few blocks away.

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when i used to attend Texas Tech Univ we used to always go to Ruby Tequila's for margaritas and tex mex. great food =]

im excited

Do we not have enough Tex-Mex places in town already? Ugh. How about something different... like South African, Scandinavian, Indonesian, or Kenyan fare?

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further proof that people will whine about anything on this board.

people complain when nothing gets built in midtown, then they complain that too many bars and not enough restaurants are being built. Now we have complaints about the origin and price range of the restaurants being built. :)

Hey, just doing my part to keep the inner loop hip. It's a slippery slope--one more middling enchilada and margs joint, next thing you know there's a Chuy's, fat office women and SAHMs whooping it up for group happy hour, and families people with their shreiking babies ruining the vibe on Saturday night.

;)

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Does anyone know the address or cross streets for this? Someone mentioned that it was a redo of an existing bldg.

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most likely it's the mediocre food.

That title belong's to Chuy's if I recall correctly.

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That title belong's to Chuy's if I recall correctly.

Mediocrity exists in many places, including Chuy's.

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Hey, just doing my part to keep the inner loop hip. It's a slippery slope--one more middling enchilada and margs joint, next thing you know there's a Chuy's, fat office women and SAHMs whooping it up for group happy hour, and families people with their shreiking babies ruining the vibe on Saturday night.

;)

Is Midtown hip? In my view it's more a resting point for frat boys and downtown corporate dwellers wearing their Dockers dress shirts *untucked* than it is for edgy hole-in-the-wall places or really adventurous joints. But you're right, at least there are some nice gems amongst the mundane suburban joints/pharmacies/banks/strip malls that in my view litter Midtown. And yes, I'd rather see vacant lots than more suburban joints in Midtown. At least vacant lots allow one to hope for something better.

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It's a redo of the old Knights of Columbus building. I was sure that building was destined for a gentleman's club, since there were previously no windows.

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Is Midtown hip? In my view it's more a resting point for frat boys and downtown corporate dwellers wearing their Dockers dress shirts *untucked* than it is for edgy hole-in-the-wall places or really adventurous joints.

Perhaps I used the wrong word. Given the populuarity of Woodrows, Cyclone Anaya's, Pub Fiction, and the strip-center sports bar that advertises waitresses in stripperish referee outfits--you make a compelling case.

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