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Downtown Restaurant and Bar Scene - More Coming

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Yes but its going to be pretty damn hard to "build" up this pedestrian traffic without addressing the issues on hand.

Clearly pedestrian traffic isn't suffering too bad since I see downtown pretty packed on the weekends. This issue on the homeless doesn't deter people who live in the city. The only people it bothers are cookie cutter suburbanites who think anything with grit is dangerous. You're in a city!!! Get over the homeless!!! Learn how to talk and deal with people or better yet ignore them! Stop being a scared little you know what! I'm speaking in a general sense not to you Astros148. People are going to go downtown with a reason to be there. If more stores pop up, then more people will shop downtown. I think Houstonians are pretty used to a few pan handlers.

Edited by j_cuevas713
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What is this downtown is packed? Were not talking narket square area or discovery green, greenstreet and main street are hardly EVER packed with people walking.

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Yes but its going to be pretty damn hard to "build" up this pedestrian traffic without addressing the issues on hand.

I agree, if "addressing the issues on hand" involves (1) comprehensive efforts to provide shelter, mental health services, etc. to the homeless; and (2) more visible law enforcement to give the feel of more safety (given that 77002 is one of the safer zip codes in the city).

 

I believe that these things along with better lighting at night  (the new LED lights are an improvement), pedestrian-level way-finding from hotels and residences to centers of activity (Disco Green, Market Square Park, Theater District) that are along the creation of certain"signature streets" (i.e., Travis, Fannin, Texas, Dallas) that pedestrians come to know are "safe" for walking.  

 

Even DT Chicago has dead zones outside of Michigan Ave, but I've found the way-finding to be much better.  

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What is this downtown is packed? Were not talking narket square area or discovery green, greenstreet and main street are hardly EVER packed with people walking.

Houston is in no way comparable to DT Chicago, San Francisco or NY in terms of pedestrian traffic; however, these cities also have "dead zones".  For example the financial district around Wall Street is pretty dead after working hours.  

 

Most areas in DT Houston, especially after business hours, will probably never be "packed"; however, as you mentioned Market Square, Discovery Green, etc. are often so.

 

A major drawback is that our few nodes of activity (Market Square, Discovery Green, Theater District) are not known to pedestrian visitors.  We are not a tourist town, so no one is DT looking for "Discovery Green Park" the way they would Michigan Ave, Canal Street, Broadway or 6th Street.

 

Strategic way-finding I believe would help.  These examples shown by ASLA (props to Buffalo Bayou park), Mobility Trends and Planetizen, are needed DT imo: 

 

post-13756-0-05714600-1448684817_thumb.gpost-13756-0-92740000-1448684832.jpgpost-13756-0-69074000-1448684841.jpeg

Edited by quietstorm
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Great news! Apparently the homeless aren't really homeless. They're living the "home-free lifestyle". Even better, more of us can look forward to being able to partake in this disruptive innovation in modern housing trends as the gig/sharing economy continues its noble mission of liberating folks from the oppressive shackles of home ownership.

 

https://twitter.com/tomscocca/status/670643569489780736/photo/1

 

I'm sure we'll all be sleeping easier now that that's been clarified. 

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you're literally out of touch if you dont think theres not a issue. I work in the health care field day in and day out and work with numerous mental health care facilities and own a decent business myself. Theres issues with the homeless/pan handlers that need to be addressed. I am in no way saying lets throw them all in jail or some other bogus, im saying that theres needs to be ways to reform the way we look at them. We need to create more shelters for them so that the ones that really do want want to get help can. As a city we can not continue to look at the homeless people as its not a issue and simply glance past it. Some of these homeless people have serious mental conditions and which law enforcement and others need to be better trained for.

 

We need to have a better law enforcement presence Main like more bicycle cops and better lightening which the above poster said is being addressed. Im not saying that we need to exterminate the homelss or whatever you're trying to twist my words to, im saying its a PROBLEM ON HAND. We as a city can not stop overlooking it. That stretch on main from bell all the way to rusk is the worst stretch after 8pm and ive had buddys who are cops saying theres always numerous robbery and theft but they simply dont have the resources.

Edited by astros148
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What is this downtown is packed? Were not talking narket square area or discovery green, greenstreet and main street are hardly EVER packed with people walking.

Umm yeah it is... my gf and I go to HoneyMoon Cafe & Bar very often and that area is always packed with people on the wknd. 

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you're literally out of touch if you dont think theres not a issue. I work in the health care field day in and day out and work with numerous mental health care facilities and own a decent business myself. Theres issues with the homeless/pan handlers that need to be addressed. I am in no way saying lets throw them all in jail or some other bogus, im saying that theres needs to be ways to reform the way we look at them. We need to create more shelters for them so that the ones that really do want want to get help can. As a city we can not continue to look at the homeless people as its not a issue and simply glance past it. Some of these homeless people have serious mental conditions and which law enforcement and others need to be better trained for.

 

We need to have a better law enforcement presence Main like more bicycle cops and better lightening which the above poster said is being addressed. Im not saying that we need to exterminate the homelss or whatever you're trying to twist my words to, im saying its a PROBLEM ON HAND. We as a city can not stop overlooking it. That stretch on main from bell all the way to rusk is the worst stretch after 8pm and ive had buddys who are cops saying theres always numerous robbery and theft but they simply dont have the resources.

 

Most of the panhandlers aren't homeless, they're people with homes who have substance abuse problems. Violent crime in Downtown is actually quite rare, probably partly because of all the police cameras in Downtown. It's true that HPD is understaffed right now due to budget problems. We probably have to either fix the pension problems or raise taxes.

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Nice win for the Hotel Alessandra - Jose Hernandez confirmed as new chef for its yet to be named restaurant. Jose is the former chef of Radio Milano which received a three star review from Alison Cook.

 

The upscale dining scene is really developing downtown. New restaurants below:

-Main Kitchen (Erin Smith recently left however)

-Prohibition

-Pappas Bros Steakhouse

-New Hotel Alessandra Restaurant

-The upscale Italian restaurant at Finger's ballpark apartments

-La Fisheria

 

http://www.chron.com/entertainment/restaurants-bars/article/Jose-Hernandez-to-helm-new-downtown-restaurant-6660268.php#photo-7024636

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Main Kitchen was really good. Hope it stays good.

I agree. The food is very good. The atmosphere being in the middle of the lobby is awkward, at least for me. The chefs actually deserved better.

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I never thought the homeless were that bad downtown, and would normally agree that just telling them no and moving on works well for me. My GF, however, has a much different experience. The homeless just seem more aggressive with her. Even I feel more unsafe when I am walking with her than if I am just by myself. Anyone here saying getting harassed by the homeless is no big deal better check their entitlement if they are male

 

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/article/Men-outnumber-women-downtown-3-to-1-6597091.php

 

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There are homeless people throughout downtown Austin, especially near 6th street. However, it's almost barely noticeable because there are just so many people walking around. I get that will be the sense once more restaurants open and people live in downtown here.

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There are homeless people throughout downtown Austin, especially near 6th street. However, it's almost barely noticeable because there are just so many people walking around. I get that will be the sense once more restaurants open and people live in downtown here.

Not to be argumentative, but everyone can notice the homeless in Austin...

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That entire article is pointless because if you look at the numbers, you'll see that 2/3 of the men (but very few of the women) downtown live in places like the federal penitentiary and the county jail, so they don't exactly count, as they don't contribute to the streetlife or the bars/restaurants or anything like that.

The true numbers would show that downtown is closer to a 60/40 male/female split. Of course, the Houston Chronicle doesn't care to do any actual reporting so they haven't figured that out.

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Go check out the Magnificent Mile in Chicago. Lots of high end stores, and plenty of panhandlers. All cities deal with this problem, and there's no law you can pass to prevent people from asking someone a question on a public sidewalk. We have the First Amendment, after all.

After reading this, I don't believe that you have been to Chicago.  To suggest that the homeless problem along Main Street in Houston is in anyway similar to the homeless problem along Michigan Ave is ridiculous (hint -- there isn't a problem along the Magnificent Mile unless you include human statues that go home every night).  

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My biggest issue with the homeless downtown is the drug problem, and in particular Kush.  I would say that every third time I catch the Red Line going south after 8:00 pm at Central Station I am offered drugs.  Last week there were cops there running people off for smoking Kush on the platform, but they are back the next day.  Over the holiday, I took the train to the UH game, and there was a completely deranged woman that got on yelling at everyone.  Most people got up and moved to the other end of the train.  The conductor eventually stopped the train and said he would call the cops if she didn't get off.  She got off at the next stop, and then jumped in front of the train to scare the conductor.  She then walked over to the SE corner of Herman Park, which I understand is now affectionately referred to as Kush Park.  My brother-in-law visiting from New York got the pleasure of explaining to my 6-year old nephew what drugs are, why people abuse them, etc.  

 

The drug/homeless problem along the rail line in downtown, wheeler station, and the SE corner of Herman Park needs to be addressed if the city wants to continue to take steps forward to be seen as a world class city.  

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After reading this, I don't believe that you have been to Chicago.  To suggest that the homeless problem along Main Street in Houston is in anyway similar to the homeless problem along Michigan Ave is ridiculous (hint -- there isn't a problem along the Magnificent Mile unless you include human statues that go home every night).  

If you'll read my post again, you'll see I never mentioned homeless. Most panhandlers in Houston and elsewhere are not homeless.

You, like others in this thread, are conflating panhandling with homelessness. Some panhandlers are homeless, but most are not, and it's more about substance abuse than homelessness.

Edited by kylejack

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My biggest issue with the homeless downtown is the drug problem, and in particular Kush.  I would say that every third time I catch the Red Line going south after 8:00 pm at Central Station I am offered drugs.  Last week there were cops there running people off for smoking Kush on the platform, but they are back the next day.  Over the holiday, I took the train to the UH game, and there was a completely deranged woman that got on yelling at everyone.  Most people got up and moved to the other end of the train.  The conductor eventually stopped the train and said he would call the cops if she didn't get off.  She got off at the next stop, and then jumped in front of the train to scare the conductor.  She then walked over to the SE corner of Herman Park, which I understand is now affectionately referred to as Kush Park.  My brother-in-law visiting from New York got the pleasure of explaining to my 6-year old nephew what drugs are, why people abuse them, etc.  

 

The drug/homeless problem along the rail line in downtown, wheeler station, and the SE corner of Herman Park needs to be addressed if the city wants to continue to take steps forward to be seen as a world class city.  

 

one of the best responses in the thread. They need more metro officials imo actually doing work. I always see groups of them standing around not doing shit!

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Ok I'm going to explain to you the difficulty of the problem as it pertains to drugs.

The D.A does not want to bring charges because time and resources. To haul someone in on something that just going to ither be dismissed or reduce to time served while they were waiting for there court date.

That in turns keeps cops from hauling them in because they know they will probably be right back out in a few days (it gets annoying to keep arresting the same people, I worked with cops before who are assigned to Herman )

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Look I get it I work the parks ..iv lost count of the numbers of time we have to respond to a Over dose at Hermann.I see the look of disgust on people faces when the are riding the park train and they pass by the hermann memorial statue with their kids and see people passed on on the grass from jus hand it not just one or two it 5 and 6 at a time

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But it a matter of rights as it a public space so they can't be ran out ..but according to some rumor I heard the conservicy is in talk to buy the park from the city. That would allow them to have say over who can and can't be there since it would be a private park.

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Central Park in NY used to be a notorious sh_thole, but it's really a nice family place these days from what I gathered. What did they change, and could we replicate it?

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Central Park in NY used to be a notorious sh_thole, but it's really a nice family place these days from what I gathered. What did they change, and could we replicate it?

Cost of living around it exploded.

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Cost of living around it exploded.

 

Going off the Marlowe price list, at least Randall Davis is doing his part.

 

Seriously though, I get the impression that most of the street folks downtown "commute" in anyway.

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Central Park in NY used to be a notorious sh_thole, but it's really a nice family place these days from what I gathered. What did they change, and could we replicate it?

 

President Trump renovated Wollman Ice Skating Rink in the mid-80s and a conservancy raised funds during the 80s and 90s to restore the lawns and other features.  More visitors = more foot traffic = less opportunity for the sorts of loitering and crime that previously occurred.

 

Edited by Gator Purify

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Why does his involvement make you less excited? Just genuinely curious; the places you mentioned IMO do well and serve distinct rolls in the DT,Midtown nightlife scene. Now if it was the guys from Gas Lamp lol

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well, we do have to have some places for the doucheoisie to congregate in order for us cool kids to be undisturbed in our cool kids' hangouts.  :ph34r:

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506 Main.  Former iBar.  Proposed sign.  Claims to be open in January.

 

12239187_461320367405043_434848512475748

Edited by adr
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While they had the old 386 fired up, they could have MS Painted over the rotten wood and plastic hanging out of the door.

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Per two approved Downtown Storefront Improvement Grants, 909 Franklin will open as La Calle, quick-serve Mexico City Street food.  Next door at 907 Franklin they will be opening Craft Beer Cellar, a national chain http://www.craftbeercellar.com/- These are both on the block between Main and Travis.

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Burger theory in the old Savoy is open for breakfast now, from 6:30 am - 10 am.  They said lunch won't start until January 1

 

The bar is fully open though now noon to 2:30 am every night 

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In making the rounds on Saturday I was circling around Market Square.

I was going North on Travis and turning left on Preston at La Carafe.

I can't think of the name of the bar that is in the building just to the north of the pocket parking lot

on Travis, but I noticed a large crack on the southern wall close to the front side of the building facing

Travis. It seems fairly large and possibly the facade is separating from the south side of this building.

Maybe its been this way for a while and I've just missed it in the past.

Please fill me in and is this a serious structural problem or just a shifting of the soil.

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bob, that building would be Hearsay, a nice bar that also serves food.  

 

That crack has likely been there for a while; all those buildings are 150+ years old.  But I'll ask whilst bending my elbow in the neighborhood this evening.

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In making the rounds on Saturday I was circling around Market Square.

I was going North on Travis and turning left on Preston at La Carafe.

I can't think of the name of the bar that is in the building just to the north of the pocket parking lot

on Travis, but I noticed a large crack on the southern wall close to the front side of the building facing

Travis. It seems fairly large and possibly the facade is separating from the south side of this building.

Maybe its been this way for a while and I've just missed it in the past.

Please fill me in and is this a serious structural problem or just a shifting of the soil.

Is it the big gash in the brick that can be seen on google street view?

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This is interesting.

If you look on Google street view from the congress side, the crack doesn't seem to be there. But, if you view from the shot taken by he car on Travis, you can see it. Since the weather is quite different between shots, I think thAt the images were taken at different times..

Or, it could simply be that the shot from Congress simply does not have enough detail or contrast to see it.......

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This is interesting.

If you look on Google street view from the congress side, the crack doesn't seem to be there. But, if you view from the shot taken by he car on Travis, you can see it. Since the weather is quite different between shots, I think thAt the images were taken at different times..

Or, it could simply be that the shot from Congress simply does not have enough detail or contrast to see it.......

 

I see what you mean. The one image that is time stamped in August, you can make it out, but it does appear less pronounced. Hard to make anything out rom the June image from around the corner. As you say though, it could just be a matter of resolution.

 

If you go back in time using the street view to 2013, it does not appear to be there at all.

Edited by Nate99

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^^^ that pronounced "crack" is most unfortunate and quite dangerous.... right??

 

I'm interested to hear if Mollusk got any inside scoop.  That wall looks to be load bearing, you can see the other side of the bricks from inside. 

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Not that I have any insight into the crack in particular, but one of the stunning features on the inside of Hearsay are these large steel horizontal struts that appear to basically be holding the building together, and look as though they may have been added after the fact.

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It is the oldest commercial building in Houston, older even than La Carafe.

 

I've never heard that.  I have actually heard that there are several older than this.

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