An Outsiders’ Tag Map of Houston’s Inner Loop

Urbane Neighborhood Culture Map of Houston's Inner Loop

A map-making trio headquartered in San Francisco has turned out its 11th “neighborhood culture map” of a U.S. city. And here we are . . . Houston! Well, after a fashion. How’d the team from Urbane come up with this particular collection of graphic geographic platitudes? Directly from sources: “For this map, we had an army of Houstonian contributors who talked a lot about their local haunts.” Isn’t that enough? “We do very thorough research, interviewing of people from there, and fact-checking to present our best efforts,” the Urbane team explains on its website. “Instead of critiquing our viewpoints, it is helpful for everyone if you would like to help our next project. Nobody can truly be a local to an entire city, can they? Nobody knows everything about every city. Maybe you’re an expert on your block, but it’s rare to find a full city expert.” So there. With its latest venture in Las Vegas, the group is trying another tack: Going onsite and asking passers-by to tag the neighborhoods they know with scribbled-on Post-It notes.


The growing list of cities commemorated with similar maps by the same group includes Toronto, New Orleans, San Francisco, and Austin. And Urbane has begun applying its crowdsourced-quip technique to college-campus maps as well. Yes, they’re all available for sale.

Map: Urbane

Tag, You’re That

15 Comment

  • Really the best they could do with Southampton was “older stock of homes” and for River Oaks, extreme Xmas lighting –pretty lame–I could do so much better with this map and be a whole lot more clever and witty as I’m sure most inner loop Houstonians could–sort of a lazy effort frankly

  • When I saw this, I thought “Oh ,this should be kinda cool”. But then when I looked at it, I have to agree with Shannon’s comment.
    Could have been funny but I don’t see how they got actual Houston input based on this effort.

  • Unbelievably lame; feeling secondhand embarrassment. I agree with the other commenters: there’s no way someone actually from Houston gave any input on this.

  • It definitely feels like it was put together by someone who’s never actually been to Houston. The one they did for Austin is similarly bland.

  • The least they could have done would have been to spell Shepherd right.

  • A lame-ass map created by some lame-ass San Fran hipsters in ultra lame-ass California.

  • I disagree with the comments above. Sure, they could have had some insider jokes about the Heights preservation hypocrites or Montrose’s character being destroyed by the very people who move there for its “character,” but instead they put together an easy visual reference for people moving to Houston who know nothing about any of the neighborhoods. What’s wrong with that? I would completely recommend this picture to someone who is moving to Houston and had no clue of where they should look to live or play.

  • It is kind of quiet in the 77005 tonight.

  • we’re becoming the new westside? can someone translate the meaning of that? thx

  • @Walt – Because yes, if I’m moving into a city where I know nothing about the neighborhoods, this would be my first go-to source.

  • I’ve only lived here 8 years, and with the exception of “we’re becoming the new Westside” (what does that mean?), I’d say its spot on.

  • It’s like you took the map Houstonia did a while back, sucked out the accuracy and the wit, and Voila! Like Mama used to say, if you can’t do something right…..

  • This is so cringeworthy. Whoever wrote this should be fired. Even for the sake of comedy, nothing about it is even entertaining… like someone was trying too hard to be funny, but just isn’t.

    Anyone else hear crickets?

  • “Community College” appears to include Audubon Place, Westmoreland, Courtland Place, etc. Yeah that makes sense.

  • Sorry, but this map is pathetic. My 6 year-old son could have been more witty than this. Easily the worst of these kinds of maps I’ve ever seen.