How the Downtown Tunnel System Was Born

Houston Underground

Near the end of a short New York Times feature on Houston’s downtown tunnel system is this historical nugget:

[“Tunnel Lady” Sandra] Lord, a writer and Houston historian, traced the origins of the tunnels to Ross Sterling, an oilman and governor during the Depression, who, inspired by Rockefeller Center, linked two of his downtown buildings underground in the early 1930s. Soon after, an entertainment entrepreneur, Will Horwitz, connected three of his vaudeville and movie theaters to save on air-conditioning.

And they say geothermal cooling is something new for Houston.

Photo: Flickr user The Rocketeer