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My Bike Commute in Houston


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There's been a thread ( http://www.houstonar...y-april-13-2012 ) about bike commuting. While I don't do it every day, I do ride to work maybe twice a week when the weather isn't awful. I decided to supplement the discussion with some photos, so I stopped a couple times on my ride home to snap some pics with my phone. Note these are just phone snapshots, so excuse blurriness, bad lighting, horrible white balance, etc. Also, I used the "in-camera HDR" a bit to get more shadow detail in the exposures, but this blew out the colors in a couple instances. Anyway, pics.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

I work in the TMC; the first (or last) part of my ride is through Hermann Park. This is always my favorite section. There is currently an exhibition by the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei. It's interesting how the Chinese gov't can't seem to make up its mind if he is a countercultural dissident to be jailed or a modern wonder to be celebrated.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

More Hermann Park. I decided to ride up the tallest hill in Houston.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

This is a typical streetscape for this part of the Museum DIstrict, along Caroline. On this street: Asia Society, Weather Museum, Holocaust Museum, Caroline Collective, etc.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

... and the Mexican consulate. Always alot of activity here during business hours.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Wheeler is the only problematic intersection. Although Caroline is the "bike path," there isn't a light at this intersection. This is the only part where I have to pay particularly close attention to traffic, as it is much faster moving on Wheeler than any of the residential neighborhood streets that I use. The character also transitions out of the lush Museum District to the grittier Midtown feel at this point.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Accidentally snapped this one, but I thought it came out well.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

The new Buffalo Soldiers Museum is a truly beautiful example of adaptive re-use of an existing structure. Just really great. I can't wait to see it finished.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Depending on traffic, I will cut through the HCC main campus after Alabama. This campus is very street oriented, and has alot of pedestrian life. It's better connected to its neighborhood than Rice or UH.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Another great example of re-use. This is the "St. Joseph House," a psychiatric rehabilitation center.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Elgin is a very busy street, but fortunately there is a stoplight. To the right is Houston Fire Station 7, Elizabeth Baldwin Park, Magnificat House, and some incredibly overpriced "Tuscan" townhomes that the developer took years to sell after many price reductions.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

And some typical streets in East Midtown. Nice density, mixed residential and commercial uses (a hospital, a wine bar, a sandwich cafe, a gym, a fortune cookie factory (smells like vanilla!!), bars and lounges, some warehouses, and office buildings including the architecture firm Studio Red, and yes, of course, Star of Hope, Search, and some other homeless charities and halfway houses.)

I think Midtown, particularly the quieter East Midtown, is a very pleasant place to live. It's convenient to Downtown, TMC, Montrose, and Greenway. Occasional (or exclusive) bike commuting is very possible to any of these areas. Even if you don't do it every day (I don't; the balance is about an equal mix of using the light rail or driving myself) it is definitely possible, good exercise, and enjoyable in fair weather.


Untitled by wools, on Flickr


Untitled by wools, on Flickr

Also, some really great places to eat. Les Givral's is less than a mile from my house. An extremely tasty dinner for two under was about $16.

Edited by woolie
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