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Someone correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm sure they will...)

Houston's claim is that we have the second greatest number of seats in a designated theater district outside of NYC. This is not to say that other cities don't have as many (or more) seats in an equivalent area, or more theaters, or more performances, or greater attendance; it's just not designated as a Theater District.

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Someone correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm sure they will...)

Houston's claim is that we have the second greatest number of seats in a designated theater district outside of NYC. This is not to say that other cities don't have as many (or more) seats in an equivalent area, or more theaters, or more performances, or greater attendance; it's just not designated as a Theater District.

That pretty much sums it up. It's all just a bunch of spin. The thing is, we don't need to make such grandiose claims for our theater district to be taken seriously. I think it's pretty much accepted that Houston's resident theater, ballet, opera and symphony are among the finest around. And yet, everything must appear to be bigger in Texas...

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The Buffalo Bayou plan calls for the conversion of the massive Post Office downtown into another performance hall. The master plan is to expand the theatre district to the other side of the freeway.

Slight problem, convince the government to relocate.

Personally, I love our district and the Hobby center. Going to see Hair on Wedsnesday.

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Someone correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm sure they will...)

Houston's claim is that we have the second greatest number of seats in a designated theater district outside of NYC. This is not to say that other cities don't have as many (or more) seats in an equivalent area, or more theaters, or more performances, or greater attendance; it's just not designated as a Theater District.

The other qualification to that claim was that it be in a concentrated area, but "concentrated area" wasn't defined.

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The Buffalo Bayou plan calls for the conversion of the massive Post Office downtown into another performance hall.  The master plan is to expand the theatre district to the other side of the freeway.

Slight problem, convince the government to relocate.

Personally, I love our district and the Hobby center. Going to see Hair on Wedsnesday.

Maybe I was mistaken, but I thought the plan suggested using the post office land as festival grounds to hold the International Festival, etc. (and a darn good idea that was). Was there also a plan for another performance venue? I thought the Post Office was considering relocating the main facility anyway, but the main problem would be relocating the railroad tracks behind.

To me the Theater District capacity is fine, but it could use perhaps some better signage and more restaurants to hold it together better as a "district". It has some great intitutions, but it seems to lack some cohesiveness and urban feel.

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  • 1 month later...

Theater District lights up the night

Electronic signs that sparked fight have been set up

By RON NISSIMOV

Copyright 2004 Houston Chronicle

City officials recently put up three electronic billboards in the downtown Theater District, four years after City Council approved the installations.

ADVERTISEMENT

Two of the signs are outside Wortham Center, and the third is above the front doors of Jones Hall. The signs will not have video or moving text, and will display new images every eight seconds, said Dawn Ullrich, spokeswoman for the city's Convention and Entertainment Facilities Department.

The signs replace previous marquees of the same size that used manually placed letters.

"The signs allow us to use colors and photographs and put more information on the billboards," Ullrich said.

City Council approved the installation in 2000.

The signs then became entangled in controversy in 2001 when several organizations, including the Houston Texans and the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, proposed amending the city's billboard ordinance to allow convention centers, performing arts facilities or sports and entertainment complexes to erect as many as six electronic billboards, each with a size limit of 1,925 square feet.

Several groups that had fought to reduce the number of billboards in Houston, including, Scenic Texas Inc., opposed the proposal.

At the time, Jordy Tollett, director of the Convention and Entertainment Facilities Department, proposed allowing large signs with video in the Theater District.

In May 2002, City Council approved a compromise that allowed smaller electronic signs in three areas: The Theater District, the Harris County complex at Reliant Park, and the East Side Sports and the Convention Complex District, which includes Minute Maid Park, the Toyota Center, the George R. Brown Convention Center and the adjacent convention center hotel.

As part of the compromise, council created a downtown scenic district ordinance that would phase out some existing billboards and signs and prevent the installation of new ones.

The city has no immediate plans to put up electronic billboards at the convention center or the hotel, Ullrich said. The other facilities have installed billboards, she said.

She said City Council in June agreed to pay Daktronics, Inc., $677,176 to install the three signs.

ron.nissimov@chron.com

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  • 2 years later...

Thx for the comments.

Something has happened to this site. The photos are not being imaged fully and now it is not downloading all the images.

Anyone know what's going on? My post on other forums are still working normally.

Edited by Boris
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Thx for the comments.

Something has happened to this site. The photos are not being imaged fully and now it is not downloading all the images.

Anyone know what's going on? My post on other forums are still working normally.

When I've posted a lot of photos in the past, I've had to do it ten at a time for the forum to accept my post, then go back and edit my thread to add more. Perhaps with the new version of the software you might need to redo the process or break up your post into several new ones.

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  • 6 years later...

Fairly urgent here: some relatives of mine (not me) are going to the Theater District to watch a play on Saturday. They're asking me if there's anyplace nearby (they don't want to walk half a mile) to grab lunch afterward.

 

I've only been downtown twice in my life, and never to that part of downtown (I'm happy to say that I was able to visit Macy's before it closed, and I have had a beer at a bar off Main Street). It seems like a lot of the cheaper places to eat are in the tunnels, which are closed.

 

Is there a place to go, or should they just give up and head elsewhere?

Edited by IronTiger
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They were thinking something like around $20 for lunch for two.

 

I'm assuming they're watching Wicked at the Hobby Center? That's on the edge of downtown and there's a lot of light rail construction there on the weekends. Not very pedestrian friendly i'm afraid. Market square is more than a half mile away so probably not good if they don't want to walk far. Hard Rock café is best for your budget, distance and time limitations. The food is not great though, as good as TGI Fridays imo.

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  • 1 year later...

Has anyone heard anything about this?

 

Just that it's in the process of being approved.  I tried to get a copy of it, but they didn't want to give it out until it's been fully approved.

 

There's some interesting info on this website.

 

http://arup.com/~/media/Images/Projects/H/Houston_Theater_Masterplan/Gallery/Images/Houston_masterplan_streetview_900x600_c_Arup.ashx?mh=800&mw=1000

 

http://arup.com/~/media/Images/Projects/H/Houston_Theater_Masterplan/Gallery/Images/Houston_masterplan_900x600_c_Arup.ashx?mh=800&mw=1000

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Yep, I was super pleased to hear the info from a Houston First leader. He only said the Bayou Place demo was an "option" they were considering to not have a huge barrier down the middle of the theater District, so not sure that will actually end up happening. Who owns Bayou Place anyways?

Edit. Woah.. Just clicked the links. There's the pedestrian streetscape improvements they want to make to that area!

Edited by cloud713
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Nice finds! I'll have to skim through those when I'm not on my phone. Did it say anything about potentially tearing down/redeveloping the Bayou Place property?

 

It didn't say much at all.  But the renderings show at the least a massive remodel of Bayou Place, with the portion covering the Bagby Street being eliminated. 

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Yep, I was super pleased to hear the info from a Houston First leader. He only said the Bayou Place demo was an "option" they were considering to not have a huge barrier down the middle of the theater District, so not sure that will actually end up happening. Who owns Bayou Place anyways?

Edit. Woah.. Just clicked the links. There's the pedestrian streetscape improvements they want to make to that area!

 

The City owns Bayou Place.  It's operated by The Cordish Companies, on some sort of long-term lease/development contract.  Personally, I think they (Cordish) have done a pretty lame job with it...   I wouldn't mind seeing it turned over to a different developer with more exciting ideas. 

 

EDIT:  Damn.  According to Wikipedia, Cordish has a 50-year lease, beginning in 1997.  Hopefully there are some clauses giving the city some flexibility... Or they can convince Cordish that tearing down part of it will make the rest more valuable.

Edited by Houston19514
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The Houston First leader mentioned that when they were planning this plan that one of the options was tearing Bayou Place down (he made it sound like the whole complex) and redeveloping those blocks, so I guess there is some flexibility..?

Also when I mentioned the Chronicle property as a possible new venue location he kind of grinned. Not saying they're gonna build a new venue there, but they've at least considered it..

Edited by cloud713
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just had some time to do an internet search for the Master Plan and stumbled across this PDF from April 29th. must of been the most recent meeting that he referenced..

http://www.houstontx.gov/council/c/committee/20150429/PresentationTheaterDistrictMasterPlan.pdf

edit.. WOW! complete redevelopment of the Jones Plaza, Fish Plaza, Tranquillity Park, a new pedestrian bridge across the bayou, and options for a complete tear down/redevelopment of Bayou Place to name a few...

Here's a quick overview of some of the plans.

CD373665-1C48-4BC3-9D57-C2C62CA7EEF8_zps

E56E367E-BE3D-4FC8-A31E-B6D42E045689_zps

48B525B8-6248-418E-9768-ACEDAA4E7DBD_zps

A19FA5BB-7235-43BD-8F15-B4FB39276EC5_zps

6025AB51-043B-4A38-B544-65B8A9689265_zps

B9FFBD0D-C47A-4DA5-A19F-620780A32466_zps

B1EC16C4-0D50-41C4-9609-72AC3BAF3CA9_zps

209A4A05-9FBE-45A2-9058-51CD56079A9B_zps

5CE22D55-18EF-4A23-8DF9-EFB0AA0FB0B7_zps

Edited by cloud713
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just had some time to do an internet search for the Master Plan and stumbled across this PDF from April 29th. must of been the most recent meeting that he referenced..

http://www.houstontx.gov/council/c/committee/20150429/PresentationTheaterDistrictMasterPlan.pdf

edit.. WOW! complete redevelopment of the Jones Plaza, Fish Plaza, Tranquillity Park, a new pedestrian bridge across the bayou, and options for a complete tear down/redevelopment of Bayou Place to name a few...

Here's a quick overview of some of the plans.

CD373665-1C48-4BC3-9D57-C2C62CA7EEF8_zps

Looks like there'd also be a Brazos St pedestrian thoroughfare from City Hall through Tranquility Pk & behind demo'd rear half of Bayou Place, connecting to Fish Plaza restaurant pad site.

Also assuming the only the front half of Bayou Place up to Sundance Theater since they keep referencing Film Center examples. So that means the possibility of a new venue to replace the Verizon Wireless Theater. Where does the Hard Rock Cafe end up in all this?

Jones Plaza had been rumored for a renovation for some time now. Interesting to see how it Tranquility Park shape up in this.

With LED technology, the lighting plan for Alley Theater in particular could be a memorable addition... can't wait to see how that ends up.

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It appears they will be keeping the front section of bayou place. . Which could actually work out for places like hard rock if they shift to say green st or along the new dallas corridor higher visbity..I never noticed how much bayou place back in broke up the flow of the street...

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Bayou Place isn't even 20 years old.  Isn't it a bit wasteful to be considering tearing it down already?  Or is it really too low-density for the area now?  As others have said, the Houston Chronicle block seems like a better place to redevelop in the immediate future.

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Bayou Place essentially does to the Theater District what GRB does to the east side of downtown, separating it in half. They want to get rid of that.. If they can achieve the same by only getting rid of the street cross over then so be it, but that's a prime location to bring residential into the theater district. Or a hotel, like someone mentioned a few posts up. Either way there would be quite a bit of room left over (~ 2 blocks) for a new venue or whatever other amenities they want to bring to the area. I'd imagine it would be easier to redevelop/demo Bayou Place, which the city already owns vs the a Chronicle property, which they would have to purchase. And idk if demo is drastically more expensive for high rises vs low rises, but that could factor into costs too?

Edit. And it was built in the 1960s.. So it's 50 years old. Not even 20 years old would make it younger than the GRB, which replaced it..

Edited by cloud713
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  • The title was changed to 2

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