Monday, November 02, 2009

Voting, Houston's greatness, top ranking, and more

Continuing from last week: originally, my plan was to break up the smaller misc items into two posts of five items each, but then three new items came up over the weekend, so you get eight in this one. The first three are the new ones:
  • Wondering who to vote for Tuesday? The Chronicle does a pretty good vetting, and their endorsements are here. Print it and take it with you to the booth.
  • Kevin Kirton, the developer behind the Ashby high-rise, made a good case in Outlook yesterday not only for his development, but also for our (usually) predictable rules of development:

Houston already has a plan for development that works. That plan is to 1) establish a basic set of rules, 2) provide a level playing field, 3) enforce the rules fairly — without regard to political influence, 4) accommodate growth with roadway and utility infrastructure, and then 5) allow the market and consumer demand to determine the best land use.

These simple principles, supported by a fair and mostly uncomplicated set of regulations, have allowed this city to grow at a pace and with a vitality unmatched by any other major city in the nation. For example, our form of planning has given us the largest medical center in the world, as well as Greenway Plaza, a major employment center close to the homes of the people who work there, and the Galleria, one of the most widely imitated retail and commercial districts in the world. Perhaps surprisingly to some, it even gave us Montrose, just named a national Top 10 Neighborhood by the American Planning Association.

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2 Comments:

At 7:38 AM, November 04, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the addition of the East Line coming through downtown will be further complicated by the closing of several East-West streets because of the proposed soccer stadium.

It's a shame that this growing area East of downtown (they're now trying to brand it as 'Eado') will be cut off, mobility-wise, from downtown.

People in the general public often lament the "lack of planning" by city leaders, TxDOT, or whomever. To me, that implies that people lacked the vision or foresight to identify problems, BUT NOT identifying future problems and just ignoring them. What's the word for that? Because that seems to be the case with DART in downtown Dallas and with our situation here as well.

 
At 8:18 AM, November 12, 2009, Anonymous Mike said...

No one here in Dallas seems to be worried about traffic gridlock when all the new light rail lines are finished. Almost everyone is just excited about their rapidly expanding system. This includes conservatives and suburbanites, the people I see most. They are quietly proud of the fact that their city is leading the state in rail transit development.

 

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