Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Houston rankings, profiles, defense, music, affordability, IAH, and more

Time again for some of the smaller misc items that have stacked up:
  • Ted Balaker has a new Reason TV piece on how red tape and taxes are strangling California.  Texas is talked about as a better model about 5:30 in, with numerous shots of Houston.
  • In case you missed it, check out Jennifer-Joy Bronk's recent op-ed in the Chronicle on using micro-loans to stimulate entrepreneurship, economic development and wealth in our own city of Houston.  A great idea well worth supporting.
  • From HAIF: a defense of Houston cleverly titled "Why Houston sucks"
  • Ben Mutzenbaugh blogs for USA Today on the airline industry, and he put together a behind-the-scenes photo gallery of IAH during a recent visit.
  • A David Brooks quote/stat relevant to the urban/suburban density debate:
"In 1964, there were 15,000 foundations in the U.S. By 2001, there were 61,000. In 2007, total private giving passed $300 billion. Participation in organizations like City Year, Teach for America, and College Summit surges every year. Suburbanization helps. For every 10 percent reduction in population density, the odds that people will join a local club rise by 15 percent. The culture of service is now entrenched and widespread."
It sounds like overexposure makes one a little more hostile towards your fellow man, like the famous NYC stereotype.  I'm still a believer in offering all levels of density to let people live how they want to live, but it's still interesting to understand the pros and cons of each.
"Houston and Phoenix ranked seventh and eighth, with cost indexes of 97.9 and 98.1, respectively.  Houston also benefited from very low natural gas costs and low office leasing costs..."
  • A Financial Times special report profile: Houston: where energy is king
  • The Dallas Morning News on how cool the Houston music scene is.  This is cool but surprising, considering the Houston Press did a cover story a couple years ago about how dead the indie music scene was in Houston (and how bands routinely skip us for Austin and Dallas).
A hearty hat tip to Jessie for the last four items.  Thanks.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


At 9:40 PM, April 14, 2010, Anonymous kjb434 said...

One of the big changes in the music scene since that Houston Press article is the addition of the House of Blues. Many bands will hit New Orleans and Austin and skip Houston in between. Now the House of Blues provides a stop. It's a great venue and very affordable.

Throw in Warehouse Live, and live band lovers are happy.

At 4:01 AM, April 15, 2010, Blogger Alon Levy said...

David Brooks' statistic is just plain wrong.

On another note: in the comments to Glaeser's post about Atlanta, someone links to a BLS list of US cities by living cost. Unlike the corporate cost of living adjustment numbers, the BLS numbers are actually credible. Anyway, I don't remember exactly, but I'm almost certain that Houston's metro area turned out to have the highest cost of living-adjusted per capita income. The Northeastern cities were pretty high, too - higher than Atlanta, whose economic growth the last 13 years has been on a par with Detroit's - but not quite that high.

At 8:26 AM, April 15, 2010, Blogger Tory Gattis said...

Yes, we had a similar stat in the Opportunity Urbanism study. When you adjust for cost of living, Houston average incomes are near or at the very top. I did this chart on discretionary income:

You should be able to find the chart on absolute income in the main report at

At 4:37 PM, April 15, 2010, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've found that Houston's musicians are both the most commercially successful and influential artists in the state. Unfortunately the powers that be don't consider black music worth mentioning when talking about music scenes.

At 4:23 AM, April 16, 2010, Blogger Alon Levy said...

Those numbers are weird... Dallas and Cleveland aren't that rich, and Boston and New York aren't that poor.

Anyway, here's what I was talking about. I got the agency wrong - it's from the BEA, not the BLS.


Post a Comment

<< Home