Comment of the Day: Who Dare Oppose

COMMENT OF THE DAY: WHO DARE OPPOSE “You have no right to fight it any longer. If they are not asking for a variance then they are within their rights to build it. . . . Because you opposed a reasonable building, I hope they build a 200 unit condo that towers 20 stories, instead of five. Its exactly what you NIMBYS deserve!” [Marksmu, commenting on An End-Around at Emes Place]

31 Comment

  • Bla Bla Bla! Welcome to the Houston of the 21st century. Houston is the largest metro area in the country with NO zoning, if you don’t like it either channel your energy into substantive change, move or shut the hell up. If you are upset by the increased density today, you will really not like it in the next 25+ years. The land costs have reached a point whereby single family development does not support the returns needed by developers and don’t be so naive to not know that Houston is a developer driven city. It is so ironic that the loudest voice in the case of this particular development is a bar/restaurant owner who would balk if he was faced with any land use restrictions on his businesses.

    Grow up NIMBY’s!

  • Except that there are actually some real issues here as to whether the developer can put in a high density development and get a waiver of the 60′ right of way required by chap 42 without seeking a variance. Sure, you can cuss and fuss at people who dare to speak up to try to keep their neighborhood a nice place. But, you cannot fault people for getting upset when there is a real issue about whether the development is complying with chap 42.

  • Wait a minute. I’m confused. I could have sworn that new (not-even-in-the-Heights) Heights Walmart would ruin this neighborhood for sure and no one would ever want to live here ever again. Now one week after Walmart opens, an experienced real estate developer wants to invest tens of millions of dollars of private money to build luxury condos in this warehouse infested sub-market.

    Oh. Now I get it: none of those folks had any idea what they were talking about.

  • Old school,

    The latest news is that the developer was creating a plan that would not require a variance. If so, this fight is over.

  • Chapter 42, boy that is a document with some real teeth in it if I’ve ever seen one. Good luck to you on preventing a development by hoping that some obstructionist moves will prevent the city from granting a variance. The beauty of Chapter 42 is just the key word here, “Variance”.

  • Jeeze guys, why all the vitriol on here about NIMBYS, people who own property and express opinions about THEIR neighborhood. Everyone…yes I mean everyone, will a some point in there adult life become a NIMBY about something. Live with it and keep the nasties to yourselves.

  • SJ has a good point. Everyone talks about evil NIMBYs, busibodies who hate development – but do you really want your own neighborhood to be a free for all? OK, maybe you wouldn’t be bothered by a high rise next door, or even low-income housing. But what if someone was going to put in a roller coaster? Or a chemical plant? Or a waste transfer station?
    “Don’t like it, move” you say? How far do you want to move? Katy? Sugar Land? Baytown? Conroe? Pearland? What happens if someone builds something you don’t want out there? Do you move again? And again? And again?
    I’m not saying that things couldn’t be done differently on the neighborhood side. But let’s not make “NIMBYs” out to be monsters. It’s only natural to stand up for the quality of life in your neighborhood.

  • how about we stop talling as if “neighborhoods” aren’t a part of a larger city/community in which increased tax revenue provides better infrastructure thus providing better standards of living for the entire city/community. i know it’s hard to think of others at times like this when being confronted with the possiblity of having to spend an extra 30 seconds stuck in traffic and losing access to green space that’s private property and not yours to enjoy anyways. i’d say the old adage choose your battles wisely comes to mind. many folks in houston tend to choose everything as a battle though and have lost a lot of public support in the process. that’s why you get vitriol, because many folks are actively engaged in trying to thwart/cry foul against the laws that the citizens of this city have voted in approval of time and time again.

    does it really makes sense to oppose a high density development on 1.4 acres that would probably take up 20 times the space as a similar sized residential development if pushed out to the suburbs? that extra revenue/traffic means we’re that much closer to getting better transit options, much better (and actually useable green space) with better funded parks that our kids can actually enjoy, and etc.

  • The bigger issue is that MarkSMU is still alive after the election.

  • Screw the returns needed by parasitic developers.

  • You chose to live in a non-deed-restricted community because you like the “diversity” and the “character”, but with that comes the other side, NO YOU DO NOT get a say so anymore of what’s built next door to you. That’s the price you pay for your choice of lifestyle. If you want a say so, or don’t want to wake up next to a manure processing fireworks factory, choose your real estate commitment more wisely.
    Hipsters always want best of both worlds and when it doesn’t work, it’s always “someone else’s fault”.

  • Take it to the, trolls.

  • I’m not sure at whom commonsense’s #11 post is directed. The lawsuit was filed by a group of homeowners who chose to live in a deed-restricted, not non-deed-restricted, community.

  • Ditto Mel. Or take it to HAIF. The vitriol on some of those threads could power a small city.

  • Who tinkled in everybody’s Wheaties this morning?

  • You folks dont get it both ways. You either live in a zoned, deed restricted community, where you know exactly what will be near you… Or you don’t and you lose the power to complain about what gets built around you.

    If you choose zoning & deed restrictions you lose the diversity of construction that differentiates the Heights from the rest of Houston in a good way…

    Its really quite simple. Those who live in non-zoned, non deed restricted areas, or whose zoned/deed restricted property borders a non zoned/non-deed restricted area have no legal right to complain about construction around them. They should be thankful its not an urban compost operation.

  • @commonsence: What is with the hipster obsession? Last I checked, the folks getting tatoos and wearing ironic t-shirts and skinny jeans didn’t give a crap about land use issues. And don’t give me any bull about the Heights being full of hipsters. Buffalo Exchange couldn’t make a go of it in the Heights. Most of my neighbors are in the energy biz and the parking lot at kids’ birthday parties I go to look like the SUV section at Momentum BMW. But everytime someone in the Heights takes issue with a land use decision, they are automatically assumed to be 20 somethings with tatoos up and down both arms, wearing second hand flannel shirts and tight jeans.

  • “Hipster” is the de rigeur insult of those who lack creativity or first hand knowledge of those whom they’re insulting. It’s the low hanging fruit of modern internet insults.

  • at some point a few years ago, long after the hipster refrain should’ve been dead, all the suburban folks started referring to yuppies as hipsters and i don’t think it’s ever gone back. hipsters don’t own homes and they’re certainly not up to speed on construction/real estate in houston.

  • Joel… I completely agree. People call me a hipster and I correct them by saying I’m a yuppie… but they say I’m too young to be a yuppie so I’m a hipster??? When did being a yuppie start to mean you were older?

  • I think quite a few people in the Heights are DINKS, but that is changing rapidly, as those DINKS are reproducing like weeds. I see more young families in the Heights than anything else.

  • It’s important to be pro-active in your deed-restricted or non-deed restricted neighborhood. Going through governmental channels, or organizing a petition on your own is a part of participatory democracy.

    A case in point: Within a few blocks, we prepared a petition with photos and cited city regulations in order to have some abandoned construction boarded up. Previous scattered complaints had been overlooked. We also got some TV coverage. Job done.

    One more case, a small group was organized and was able to have red light cameras removed. Agree or not with the cameras, these were people who believed they DID have a right to complain.

  • I thought ‘yuppie’ was short for Young Urban Professional – an upwardly mobile person eager to flash their new cash.

  • Insults or labels are more effective when they’re accurate. The connection between the Heights and “hipsters” is probably an antiquated stereotype and odd. Most of my neighbors are professionals (doctors, medical field people, energy industry people, engineers, etc.) and the rest are older people who have been in the Heights for a long time. Very few of them are particularly young and none that I know are anything close to being a “hipster”. But whatever makes you feel better, commonsense. Knock yourself out. It’s probably better that you vent here than around the people in your real life who actually give a damn about you.

  • @marksmu #16 – People have always (at least since the 1st Ammendment) had a legal right to complain, deed-restricted or not. BTW, complaints, counter-complaints, insults and schadenfreude are the very lifeblood of this blog, as evidenced by how many comments inane threads like this one accrete. So if you are allergic to complaints, you are in the wrong place, Bucko…

  • The development was on the consent ballot today, and at the hearing it was determined that Emes Place meets Ch. 42 requirements. Now on to the Public Works Department for ordinances and design guidelines.

  • Yupster .. I like it. Hipster makes me picture a reinvigorated hippie, the former occupants of the Heights and Montrose areas. Maybe the influx of the newly urban empty nesters that bring that image to mind.

  • So now, it should really get interesting…..

  • As far as I can tell, hipster homeowners in the Heights are a myth – or, if they are real, sightings are about common as Sasqatch.
    Anecdotally, it takes two people – a lawyer and an engineer, to afford my 1200 square foot house in the Heights. So if we’re going to get all insulty, let’s be accurate. I’m a 30 something DINK. Ain’t no hipsters paying this mortgage.