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Midland, Texas Boom

Highrise Tower

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  • 9 months later...
On 10/6/2018 at 4:19 PM, ekdrm2d1 said:

Heard there is current an O&G boom out that way.  Recently had dinner with a chemical engineer director.  She said Midland is just booming.


Any towers planned? :lol:


I've kinda kept tabs on what's going on in the Basin over the years, even before that 53-story tower was announced - then cancelled. The boom/bust cycle tends to be more extreme there as the reliance on the energy industry is far more palpable in just about everything that happens and, in a way, it's fascinating to be on the ground in a place like that.


I think the bulk of the construction out there has primarily been new hotels - but there have been some O&G campus build-outs that have taken place. The majority have been 4-6 story structures that make an impact of sorts. Most of the action in general is on the north and west sides of town, in spots along Loop 250. Pioneer and Chevron have completed new office buildings (and in Chevron's case, campus) in the past few years. Construction is wrapping up on Anadarko's pair of office buildings as well.  


I haven't been there in about a decade, but during the previous boom a few years back - the lack of supply really drove up the costs per night. On my last visit, a lot of the professional crews out in that part of the world were not doing O&G work, but rather assembling the wind turbines for the numerous wind farms along and near I-20. The Super 8 on Wall Street near Downtown that I enjoyed as a bachelor at that time specifically because it was cheap and not horrible at the cost of about $70 would, during the boom, have rooms going for $150-$250 per night. At the same time what is arguably the nicest hotel, the Doubletree downtown, had rooms going for $500+. Needless to say things have changed.


All of that said, Downtown hasn't missed out on the action. While there are still a number of vacant spaces present some have found new lives. Two have become part of the campus for Concho Resources. Another has become residential with retail and a secondary tv studio for the CBS station at street level. When the old courthouse was demolished across the street from that building, county government took over a nearly vacant 11-story building and filled it. Others have been imploded for surface level parking lots. At least one midrise apartment complex emerged nearby, with retail in the base.


The site of the old courthouse is interesting though. This is where that 53-story tower was planned. When it died, a proposal for an 18 story or so hotel emerged then also fizzled when the principals couldn't provide financial information to the city for their backing. Between that spot on the west side of the block and the convention center on the east lay Centennial Plaza - a nice, if underused public space in the heart of the city. The small convention center is being expanded a bit and now, just west of it, will lie an expanded urban park to be called Centennial Park. This one is actually under construction at the moment, it seems. It's also probably the best thing that could have happened to the block as well, as there are a few surrounding older highrises that look like they could be given a new life... for the right person and at the right price.


A final thought, one that probably has nothing to do with anything posted so far. Midland has, for it's size, one of the best skylines in the state (IMHO) - primarily in how it tends to appear on the horizon from far away. I've always liked driving through the country and when going out there, I'd get off I-10 onto Hwy 349 to Iraan then Rankin. The land transforms from scrub land to a number of mesas that continue on for miles before coming to flat and featureless scrub land again. Still, just about 25 miles or so just south of town, that skyline starts to come into view and you know that you're close to your destination. Well, it made an impact on me as someone in my 20s at the time anyway.



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