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Australian Developer Planning Five High-Rises for Midtown

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43 minutes ago, Timoric said:

With P.E. coming down it is almost time to redraw the boundaries of Downtown Houston, I think it will become one of the largest CBDs in the United States putting distance between other currently comparable cities - Phill, Atl, Dal, San Fran, Miami, DC, Boston and being a tier down from Chicago and New York City 

I think leadership that pushes ideas like the Innovation Corridor and the Downtown Residential Innitiative will help with this.

 

Downtown had grown so much despite Oil Giant after Oil Giant moving out to the burbs.

 

I have always wanted to see a large entertainment draw in midtown and more educational facilities. 

 

It would be nice if St Joseph's gets revitalized and some of the TMC institutions set up shop around that area.

 

My friend was in the Mid Main area last and was commenting on how he likes the feel in that area. Mid Main understands the benefits of the rail stop and built with an attempt at improving the activity in the area inside and out. The Aussie development kiss to be doing the same. 

Campo had an even bigger opportunity having the stop and the park and squandered it. I was expecting a hybrid of Discovery Green and Main Street square at the super block but it seems instead we are getting the same old dead Campo development

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Speaking of Mid Main apparently they have some major structural issues. They have some serious issues with tension rods exploding and if you drive on Holman you can see one of the rods that has shot out. Apparently one of them broke a window out. I don't know what this means but there are suits and inspectors pouring over the site. If thats the case I don't know what the solution might be. I also noticed a problem on the residential building just east of the new whole foods residential building being built on Elgin. If you drive east on Elgin the corners of the decks sticking out now have two by four supports holding them up. It looks like they had some sort of failure. I hope this isn't the new construction norm in Houston.

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1 hour ago, bobruss said:

Speaking of Mid Main apparently they have some major structural issues. They have some serious issues with tension rods exploding and if you drive on Holman you can see one of the rods that has shot out. Apparently one of them broke a window out. I don't know what this means but there are suits and inspectors pouring over the site. If thats the case I don't know what the solution might be. I also noticed a problem on the residential building just east of the new whole foods residential building being built on Elgin. If you drive east on Elgin the corners of the decks sticking out now have two by four supports holding them up. It looks like they had some sort of failure. I hope this isn't the new construction norm in Houston.

 

ummm that doesn't sound good. in fact it sounds bad.

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4 hours ago, bobruss said:

Speaking of Mid Main apparently they have some major structural issues. They have some serious issues with tension rods exploding and if you drive on Holman you can see one of the rods that has shot out. Apparently one of them broke a window out. I don't know what this means but there are suits and inspectors pouring over the site. If thats the case I don't know what the solution might be. I also noticed a problem on the residential building just east of the new whole foods residential building being built on Elgin. If you drive east on Elgin the corners of the decks sticking out now have two by four supports holding them up. It looks like they had some sort of failure. I hope this isn't the new construction norm in Houston.

 

Technology. It's great when it works.

 

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On 8/21/2018 at 9:06 PM, MarathonMan said:

For whatever reason (probably short-term economic) Camden doesn’t design for the greatest good of the neighborhood.  Rick Campo could have at least taken a note from the Post residential/retail at Bagby and Gray, but he didn’t.  Apparently the ROI for residential-only development is higher, but it does nothing for the vibrancy of the neighborhood.  He’s got several developments in Midtown and they’re all lifeless.  I hope Caydon’s concept becomes the new standard for development in this town, because it’s superb! 

 

In the US, the ratio of residential square footage to retail square footage is around 28:1. That's largely because we have an insanely high amount of under-utilized retail square footage in the US. In Australia, it's almost 50:1. In the UK it's about 99:1. 

 

Taking the Australian ratio as a target, and assuming 5-story buildings, for every block with GFR, you'd expect 9 without it. That lines up pretty closely with dense, walkable neighborhoods around the world, where the number of buildings without GFR far outnumber the ones with. That said, either by tradition or by zoning, retail in those places is often concentrated on specific streets, such that some streets have essentially 100% GFR, with surrounding blocks having close to 0%. One would expect a street like Main St in Midtown to belong in the former category.

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1 hour ago, Angostura said:

 

In the US, the ratio of residential square footage to retail square footage is around 28:1. That's largely because we have an insanely high amount of under-utilized retail square footage in the US. In Australia, it's almost 50:1. In the UK it's about 99:1. 

 

Taking the Australian ratio as a target, and assuming 5-story buildings, for every block with GFR, you'd expect 9 without it. That lines up pretty closely with dense, walkable neighborhoods around the world, where the number of buildings without GFR far outnumber the ones with. That said, either by tradition or by zoning, retail in those places is often concentrated on specific streets, such that some streets have essentially 100% GFR, with surrounding blocks having close to 0%. One would expect a street like Main St in Midtown to belong in the former category.

 

I assume this is across everything (urban, suburban, rural) and not just urban areas? The large supermarkets and big box stores in the U.S. probably lower the ratio quite a bit. You'd think our large houses would raise the ratio but I guess they don't. Testament to our large purchasing power.

 

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3 hours ago, H-Town Man said:

 

I assume this is across everything (urban, suburban, rural) and not just urban areas? The large supermarkets and big box stores in the U.S. probably lower the ratio quite a bit. You'd think our large houses would raise the ratio but I guess they don't. Testament to our large purchasing power.

 

 

Probably a lot of factors at work. Off the top of my head:

 

  • Overbuilding of large shopping malls in the 80's.
  • Municipal incentives to attract big-box development in the 90's.
  • Lots of REIT/MBS/CDO money looking for places to invest in the 00's.
  • Higher suburbanization (and more road building, and higher rates of car ownership) in the US compared to other countries making more large greenfield sites available for retail.
  • Development rules that favor large projects over small ones.
  • Municipal authorities generally favoring commercial development over residential development (sales tax plus property tax > just property tax).
  • Local homeowners being less likely to oppose retail densification than residential densification.
  • Etc.

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Because so many of our neighborhoods and cities are so absurdly low density, I'd imagine we need more retail per residence just to keep places from being completely retail-free.

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https://www.virtualbx.com/construction-preview/houston-midtowns-art-supply-on-main-moving-to-museum-district/

 



Caydon’s project followed a trend of higher-density, high-end development spreading from downtown into the adjacent districts. When Caydon acquired the Art Supply and Art Square Studios’ block as part of a three-block master planned development, Russell and Trammell had to make moving plans.

 

“What I understand is they’re going to put a hotel on our site,” Trammell told VBX, adding she had was passing on an unconfirmed rumor. There have been reports that Caydon bought land next to the 2850 Fannin site, including a parking lot next to the Greensheet Building, for future development.

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15 minutes ago, Texasota said:

Oh dang! That would be a great step.

 

Would rather it was the entire area inside 610, but it's a start. 

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1 hour ago, Angostura said:

 

Would rather it was the entire area inside 610, but it's a start. 

I think more often than not developers would still build with excessively large parking areas; but it's nice to have the option not to. 

 

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2 minutes ago, HoustonIsHome said:

I think more often than not developers would still build with excessively large parking areas; but it's nice to have the option not to. 

 

 

Yes, developers would still build parking, because tenants would still WANT parking. 

 

However, when it stops being a requirement for every site to have their own parking you start to get some small benefits:

  • You can more efficiently share parking across uses. Currently, if a coffee shop that's busy during the day and a restaurant that's busy in the evening have any overlap in opening hours, they can't share parking
  • It gets people used to paying for off-street parking (it's hard to park for free in the current zero-minimum areas)
  • It allows someone to build a parking structure to support nearby business, freeing up land for retail or residential development
  • It allows the development sites too small to contain a structure AND a parking lot.

I mostly just want parking to carry a price that's close to the cost of providing it.

 

 

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15 hours ago, rechlin said:

In the third image of the second link, it appears there is a third tower on the Greensheets building site that is not shown on the other renderings.  Interestng...

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38 minutes ago, CREguy13 said:

In the third image of the second link, it appears there is a third tower on the Greensheets building site that is not shown on the other renderings.  Interestng...

 

That's the view looking south, towards the current (27 story) building under construction. At the very least, we will have the 3 buildings with the Caydon development. I'm wondering if there are any legs to the greensheet rumors, or if that was just supposed to indicate the current duo of proposed towers.

Edited by jmosele

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4 hours ago, Angostura said:

Planning commission will present today the plan to extend the CBD exemption from parking minimums to Midtown (up to the Spur/59) and Eado (the triangle between 45, 59 and the UP tracks). 

 

https://twitter.com/HoustonPlanning/status/1034919312962797568

 

Excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is the CBD exemption from parking minimums?

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39 minutes ago, Eastdwntwn said:

 

Excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is the CBD exemption from parking minimums?

 

Not sure how familiar you are, so I'll give a broad explanation.

 

When you build a house/business/etc, the city of Houston says you have to build so many parking spaces depending on how large whatever you are building is.

 

The Central Business District has an exemption from (some of) these rules, presumably because there are people that don't need to park to enjoy your establishment. 

 

The city is looking at expanding those loosened rules to the surrounding areas. 

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5 hours ago, wilcal said:

 

Not sure how familiar you are, so I'll give a broad explanation.

 

When you build a house/business/etc, the city of Houston says you have to build so many parking spaces depending on how large whatever you are building is.

 

The Central Business District has an exemption from (some of) these rules, presumably because there are people that don't need to park to enjoy your establishment. 

 

The city is looking at expanding those loosened rules to the surrounding areas. 

Nicely done.

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Midtown and the TMC is about to connect with tall buildings.  It's probably 1.5 miles from TMC to midtown?

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38 minutes ago, ekdrm2d1 said:

Midtown and the TMC is about to connect with tall buildings.  It's probably 1.5 miles from TMC to midtown?

I think you are correct. Looking at maps it appears that Cambridge Street, the northern limit of TMC, to I-69 the southern boundary of Midtown is 1.2 to 1.5 miles.   Or so.

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It appears the Midtown and Montrose

Skylines will eventually merge.At the street level you can clearly see the Montrose Hanover Tower easily from the vicinity of the Caydon project. The

two, along with the Medical Center &

Museum District skylines are going to be quite impressive.

 

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I'm not concerned about skylines merging. Midtown is a pretty large area and merging might take decades. Especially if developers keep building midrises and low rises along major corridors in prime areas Such as the Mega block. 

 

What interest me is the Tale of Two cities that is East and West of Main in midtown. East of Caroline has quite a few single family and lower density residences. I highly doubt that that area will change much in the next 30 years or so. That is quite fine as the neighborhood feel in that area appeals to me. 

 

So that leaves the area west of Caroline. I think Caroline to Bagby is going to be the area to watch out for the higher density hirises that we will be talking about for the next couple of decades. Major thoroughfares run through this area ( Main, Fannin, Travis, Louisiana, Smith, Bagby, San Jacinto, etc) yet this is the are that seems more derelict with more empty lots or unused buildings. I'm just hoping that this development will kick start more projects or revitalize developments along Fannin, San Jacinto and Caroline in Midtown. 

 

For a community college that large, HCC to me is rather sleepy. I think it can be an asset that makes that area more lively. I remember how the Main Campus of UH was pretty much the same but that is changing so I have hopes for HCC. Especially if they work closely with the proposed Tech District.

 

 

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46 minutes ago, HoustonIsHome said:

What interest me is the Tale of Two cities that is East and West of Main in midtown. East of Caroline has quite a few single family and lower density residences. I highly doubt that that area will change much in the next 30 years or so. That is quite fine as the neighborhood feel in that area appeals to me. 

 

This is a very good point. Going vertical is definitely necessary in this city, and I’m sure many of us welcome higher density and more retail, restaurant, and entertainment options which higher density brings. But not every part of town (or, as you point out, even every part of a neighborhood) needs to go vertical. 

 

Pockets of high-density towers and other vertical developments (in Midtown, downtown, along Allen Parkway, Upper Kirby, Museum District, Med Center, etc.) connected by light rail and other transportation systems should provide for all of the increased capacity inside the loop that we as a city should need in the next 30-40 years, if not longer.

 

There is still going to be a strong need (and desire) for single-family homes inside the loop. Many people (myself included) have no interest in living in high-rise towers, but still want to be close to these neighborhoods.

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 I like  how it pulls the downtown skyline closer to midtown. Once the 3300 Main farther south behind MATCH gets skyward their will be a mass

developing in Midtown around the HCC building on Elgin. This will affect the skyline dramatically. Similarly to what the northern court buildings and the eastern high rises like Catalyst and the Marriott and Hilton have done on that end of downtown.  They've expanded the skylines perimeter.

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4 hours ago, bobruss said:

 I like  how it pulls the downtown skyline closer to midtown. Once the 3300 Main farther south behind MATCH gets skyward their will be a mass

developing in Midtown around the HCC building on Elgin. This will affect the skyline dramatically. Similarly to what the northern court buildings and the eastern high rises like Catalyst and the Marriott and Hilton have done on that end of downtown.  They've expanded the skylines perimeter.

 Plus the other two high rises this group is planning. It's going to be fun to watch.

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Well 3300 Main is finally coming out of the ground and it won't be long before both sets of cranes will really give us a feel of what were going to have, in the heart of Midtown. Plus Shultz still has a 16 story building planned for the northern 1/2 of the Ensemble Theater block.

 

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4 hours ago, bobruss said:

Well 3300 Main is finally coming out of the ground and it won't be long before both sets of cranes will really give us a feel of what were going to have, in the heart of Midtown. Plus Shultz still has a 16 story building planned for the northern 1/2 of the Ensemble Theater block.

 

 

What project is that?

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This is the photo from River Oaks.. This should be it.. I see the tower crane at 3300 Main as well?

zsxDhfi.jpg

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1 hour ago, ekdrm2d1 said:

This is the photo from River Oaks.. This should be it.. I see the tower crane at 3300 Main as well?

zsxDhfi.jpg

The tower crane south of the two Caydon cranes is indeed for 3300 Main.

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View from above this afternoon (click to view it at the proper aspect ratio; I don't know why this site is stretching it now):

 

https://i.imgur.com/pW2uBiJ.jpg

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