Houston’s Healthy Healthcare Job Market; The Rise of the Budget-Conscious Homebuyer


Photo of Rice University: Russell Hancock via Swamplot Flickr Pool


9 Comment

  • Pretty ridiculous that all developers know how to do is build mini mansions and building homes that are affordable for well paid professionals requires a shift in thinking. The “Express home” term is so insulting, like its a miniature version of the tacky McMansions which is all many developers even know how to build.

  • If we know the dynamics of the energy industry is shifting from fossil fuels to alternate energy sources, why are we not marketing our millions of sqft of empty office space in the “Energy Corridor” and the world’s largest concentration of engineers to these companies? Subsidize them with cheap office and industrial space, “plug” them into U of H’ s ” Energy Research Park” and use legislation to mandate clean energy sources in metro region. Obviously the lobby for fossil fuels has deep pockets but that is NOW, soon the paradigm will shift and wealth will transfer. We manage to limp our way through the 80s crisis and that lead to a successful diversifying of the cities economy. This downturn we should take steps to diversify the energy industry itself. Fossil fuels will remain solid in the mix for sometime but being proactive never hurts.

  • Excellent post, SimplySid. Transitioning the local economy away from fossil fuels isn’t just a rational approach economically, it’s also a potential boon to the image Houston has towards having greater attraction to young workers and progressive people in general.

  • @SimplySid – first, the dynamics are not shifting to “clean.” Even if we move to natural gas, that is still dominated by Houston firms. That being said, we should promote clean energy companies to come to Houston. Run an add campaign about the cheap office space (no subsidies needed). Market students as potential employees. Not sure what government action is needed to do this other than a marketing campaign. Lastly, mandating clean energy in the city should be debated on its own merits but will not have an impact on the global demand of clean energy. An energy capital must meet global demand, not try to change that demand with hyper local policies.

  • @Simply-Sid

    Houston is already a leader in wind energy. Many engineering, manufacturing, and support firms for the industry are here.


    Houston is really good at making large precise things thanks to many years of offshore oil field equipment being designed and manufactured here. Hopefully once fusion starts becoming commercial we can attract some of those design and manufacturing companies here. Got to keep this train rolling for another few hundred years.

  • Lol, clean energy.

  • What’s missing is a lot of VC money sloshing around that would fund new start ups. Most of that money is concentrated in New York and California. VC money in Houston would also help our growing bio-tech field that is associated with the TMC.

  • The companies best positioned to dominate the “clean energy” market are probably all the oil majors that are in town already. They have the engineering talent, the money reserves (infrastructure projects require huge sums for financing), infrastructure, fabrication & logistics teams already in place. It’s just shifting the funding once those projects can prove stable revenue flows with margins that can compete against carbon. These folks are much more concerned with diversity and future revenue than any government body or your average american electorate (who really holds all the cards in this game).
    This won’t be happening anytime soon, but I assure you they’re working on it as there’s no way the energy kings are just going to roll over and hand over their market share to new domestic players. If not, they’ve got money to buy new companies & technology.

  • I would think that the sorts of companies that are best positioned to dominate clean energy are companies that already have a presence in the electricity markets, not simply oil & gas. Houston does have companies with that speciality, notably NRG and Dynegy. I do wonder at whether that’s good enough, though. Remember, there was a time when Houston wasn’t necessarily a shoe-in to become the 800-pound gorilla of the oil & gas industry and there’s no reason that things had to turn out such as they did.
    If Houston is going to cement its reputation in this sector, it needs to have some sort of comparative advantage over other cities that cannot be replicated elsewhere. And about that, I’m a bit concerned. It’s the sort of thing that I don’t really know what it is per se, but I know that its very expensive.