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Houston Endowment Corporate Headquarters At 3683 Willia St.


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  • 2 weeks later...

Talked to the Sherriff sitting outside of the construction site, they've been there for at least a couple of weeks now, stopping traffic anytime construction crews are crossing Waugh due to a worker being hit last month by a car. He Said the city currently has no plans to rework the intersection, which was a little disappointing. I don't think them sitting out there is a good use of their time nor a proper long term solution for the increase of foot traffic that will happen once this building is complete. 

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21 hours ago, pokemonizepic said:

Talked to the Sherriff sitting outside of the construction site, they've been there for at least a couple of weeks now, stopping traffic anytime construction crews are crossing Waugh due to a worker being hit last month by a car. He Said the city currently has no plans to rework the intersection, which was a little disappointing. I don't think them sitting out there is a good use of their time nor a proper long term solution for the increase of foot traffic that will happen once this building is complete. 

Looks like a plan has been submitted,

 

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Interesting how we now have two buildings in Houston that are essentially Boolean forms of one another. This building and the new MFAH building. One with an entirely convex facade, and this one an entirely concave facade.

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1 minute ago, BeerNut said:

@hindeskyWow,  I've seen places in the West go all out but didn't realize we had one in Houston.  With the increase in energy cost and questionable reliability probably more businesses and homes will consider solar.

Looking thru the COH permits on Monday morning I see 20-40 permits for solar panels every week.

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1 hour ago, BeerNut said:

@hindeskyWow,  I've seen places in the West go all out but didn't realize we had one in Houston.  With the increase in energy cost and questionable reliability probably more businesses and homes will consider solar.

Solar takes up a lot of space. I'm only in favor of employing solar if its in areas that are already taking up space, and would be enhanced with extra utility such as parking lots and roofs. Other than that I don't think solar justifies the cost in terms of power output to acreage of land. The applications seen above are great examples.

As far as out west...yes. Particularly when I was driving through Arizona on my way up to Utah, they definitely throw solar around there a lot which makes sense.

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Houston has so much potential for solar installments like that. I had no idea the VA hospital one was so big! 

I feel like parking garage top floors would also be a good choice for those types of installs, too, because I hate parking at the top floor when it’s hot or fixing to rain. You get some electricity, you get another level of covered parking to protect from sun and rain. Win-win! 

I also agree, @Luminare, I think solar is at its best when it’s working alongside other uses. 
The arrays in the deserts are pretty cool though! I was so blown away when I was flying to CA and could see all the solar farms from the plane! Wow! 

Edited by BEES?!
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  • The title was changed to Houston Endowment Corporate Headquarters At 3615-3683 Willia St.
  • 4 weeks later...

Wish our street artists were invited to color some of these panels.  Houston is colorful.

The Menil has been cited as a touchstone for these designers but this feels overdressed where the Menil feels relaxed.  This is a tasteful linen seersucker suit where none was required.

Seems like it breeds not community-centric, but institutional, activity

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On 7/14/2022 at 7:10 PM, pokemonizepic said:

Talked to the Sherriff sitting outside of the construction site, they've been there for at least a couple of weeks now, stopping traffic anytime construction crews are crossing Waugh due to a worker being hit last month by a car. He Said the city currently has no plans to rework the intersection, which was a little disappointing. I don't think them sitting out there is a good use of their time nor a proper long term solution for the increase of foot traffic that will happen once this building is complete. 

Those are off duty deputies and they make a ton of money sitting there on their off hours. They are paid by the contractor.

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On 8/24/2022 at 8:48 PM, strickn said:

Wish our street artists were invited to color some of these panels.  Houston is colorful.

The Menil has been cited as a touchstone for these designers but this feels overdressed where the Menil feels relaxed.  This is a tasteful linen seersucker suit where none was required.

Seems like it breeds not community-centric, but institutional, activity

personally I like how they're leaning into the "Menil architecture is Houston architecture" narrative. I think it goes well with the Ismaili Center across the bayou too

I like graffiti walls as much as the next guy but every city west of the Mississippi uses them to show they have "culture"

now, if by street artists you meant the Orange Show and by "color" you meant "decorate", then I could be persuaded 😄

Edited by MrFubbles
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1 hour ago, MrFubbles said:

personally I like how they're leaning into the "Menil architecture is Houston architecture" narrative. I think it goes well with the Ismaili Center across the bayou too

I like graffiti walls as much as the next guy but every city west of the Mississippi uses them to show they have "culture"

now, if by street artists you meant the Orange Show and by "color" you meant "decorate", then I could be persuaded 😄

I was literally just thinking the same thing. It flows so nice with the Ismaili Center down the road. 

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Take a drive down Richmond (starting at Kirby and heading West), and you'll get a sense this is very "Houston".

I'm all for color and culture, but not every building needs to be a loud, eye-catching fuchsia. Allow the sky, trees, and flowers to frame structure. 

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  • The title was changed to Houston Endowment Corporate Headquarters At 3683 Willia St.
2 hours ago, freundb said:

Construction fence is down. I wonder how close they are to finishing it. Hopefully they host an open house for the public.

To my eyes it looks like its at or very close to Substantial Completion. I imagine all they have is the final walk and punch list.

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2 hours ago, mattyt36 said:

Is it just me or was this completed relatively fast?

1 1/2 year construction isn't bad. This looks to me to be a very efficiently designed building from top to bottom. Steel Frame Construction for the guts of the building which is one of the quickest structures to erect. The canopy probably is using standard sizes. Same with the windows and doors. Even the special facade pieces are in regular and consistent measurements around the building (you can see what I mean by the creases and separation points). Having only one facade material also speed things up.

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A very handsome addition to our growing Buffalo Bayou frontage thanks to the amazing work done by the Bayou project over the last ten years. It has definitely helped to stimulate growth along this natural corridor. 

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18 hours ago, Luminare said:

I believe that's an eventual phase to this. Lets just say I'm familiar with the original RFP that was sent out to design firms.

I know the designs that came back in the competition all had park improvements, but I would really love to see them come to life. I know it's a bowl and it's always gonna hold water, but when it rains now it turns two portions of the paths to mud. just some better drainage and grading would help there. 

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4 hours ago, freundb said:

I know the designs that came back in the competition all had park improvements, but I would really love to see them come to life. I know it's a bowl and it's always gonna hold water, but when it rains now it turns two portions of the paths to mud. just some better drainage and grading would help there. 

I was really disappointed when they did a bunch of work on the main drainage point in Spott's park (brand new concrete culvert and pipe it looked like), only for all the water to pool NEXT to the drain and cover up the path to the bayou.

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They have a facebook post from 2 weeks ago but I don't know how to share it, so I just grabbed the pic they posted. The past few days I have seen people in business attire inside and on Tuesday they had a photographer taking pictures. You can see inside and it looks like its about ready to be up and running. 

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Edited by freundb
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  • 2 weeks later...

The more I read about this building, the less I like it, particularly the move by the Houston Endowment.  From the first announcement, I didn't like the move because it seems to be entirely contrary to the vision and wishes of the man who made the endowment possible (Jesse Jones). Few people (perhaps no one) in our history have been more committed to or done more for downtown Houston than Jesse Jones.  For his Endowment to move out of downtown to me seems disrespectful.

Now, they are green-washing themselves in the glories of their environmentally responsible, sustainable, blah blah blah new building.  How is it remotely environmentally sound and sustainable to build a new building for yourself (on formerly greenspace), leaving existing space vacant (in a market with tons of vacant existing space).

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On 10/2/2022 at 4:36 PM, emmanume said:

Will this building house anything for park users like a coffee shop or cafe?

 

On 9/21/2022 at 12:06 PM, freundb said:

I know the designs that came back in the competition all had park improvements, but I would really love to see them come to life. I know it's a bowl and it's always gonna hold water, but when it rains now it turns two portions of the paths to mud. just some better drainage and grading would help there. 

 

On 9/20/2022 at 5:47 PM, Luminare said:

I believe that's an eventual phase to this. Lets just say I'm familiar with the original RFP that was sent out to design firms.

 

On 9/15/2022 at 7:34 PM, freundb said:

Now we just need to get Spotts Park some updates.

From Houston Endowment's FAQs:

-- Will Houston Endowment maintain the adjacent park?

The Houston Endowment headquarters sits adjacent to Spotts Park. The park, and all
equipment on its property, are managed by the City of Houston Parks and Recreation Department.

 

-- Will you open the building to the public?

Like most office spaces, the building will not be open to the public. It is designed to be a workspace for our team and invited collaborators.

-- Can nonprofits or other organizations rent space for meetings or events?

The building may not be booked to hold meetings for activities not related to Houston Endowment business. Houston Endowment plans to host convenings and gatherings in collaboration with its community partners that will be on an invite-only basis.

-- Are you having a grand opening event for the community to see the space?

We will not host a grand opening. We plan to put the building straight to work. Moreover, construction on our event space will continue through the end of the year.

 

All of that, after, on the same page of their website, patting themselves on the back for being "immersed in the developing neighborhood bordered by Buffalo Bayou, Montrose, and the Houston Heights. The centrally located space allows the Foundation, a perpetual institution, the opportunity to have a permanent home and to contribute to the growth of the neighborhood."

I'm afraid the Houston Endowment may have gone seriously astray.

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29 minutes ago, Houston19514 said:

The more I read about this building, the less I like it, particularly the move by the Houston Endowment.  From the first announcement, I didn't like the move because it seems to be entirely contrary to the vision and wishes of the man who made the endowment possible (Jesse Jones). Few people (perhaps no one) in our history have been more committed to or done more for downtown Houston than Jesse Jones.  For his Endowment to move out of downtown to me seems disrespectful.

Now, they are green-washing themselves in the glories of their environmentally responsible, sustainable, blah blah blah new building.  How is it remotely environmentally sound and sustainable to build a new building for yourself (on formerly greenspace), leaving existing space vacant (in a market with tons of vacant existing space).

Its called corporate speak and yes even non-profits do this. This is a clear case of what happens when you don't remember this and try to place your own expectations on what they are saying or have been saying. This was never supposed to be a community center. The original RFP specifically stated that this was supposed to be their HQ and for their use only....and of course their "stakeholders" which is basically the same as a shareholder except not only does the non-profit function like a corporation, but is tax exempt, but also the funds that go to the non-profit count as donations and are also tax-exempt. When they say "the neighborhood" they mean what "they" think the neighborhood should or will be. When they say "the bayou" its what "they" think the bayou should or will be. When they talk about their mission they are talking about their mission "now" not "Jesse Jones vision". When they use any kind of environmentalist or progressive jargon....what they really mean is...please give us money because we are one of you (meaning people with money). This is the nature of mission companies, corporations, and non-profits. One can like it or not, but this is just how the game is played and how things work. In this current day and age they aren't doing anything out of the ordinary than what every one else is doing which is finding what narrative and position will give them the best chance to succeed, and most importantly give them the most money (although its tough to know with how warped social media interpretations of what is popular or not, or manipulated, but that's a discussion for another thread). If you don't like the direction this organization is heading then make it known, and not just with your voice, but with your wallet. These groups are not as ideologically adherent to one thing as people might think. A non-profit needs two things to exist, a crisis or situation that is never resolved or finished, and your money.

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