More Details on an Astrodome Park Plan; Tracking Texas Water Loss


Photo of Rice University: El Kento via Swamplot Flickr Pool


14 Comment

  • Re the Nerdwallet article: Color me surprised to see unassuming little Westbranch actually get mentioned in someone’s “best beighborhood” lists. If the community needs a promotional slogan, I’ve got a suggestion: “Make yourself at home — the Beltway traffic isn’t moving anyway.”

  • Ranking the Best neighborhoods is a flawed study. They left out Oak Forest/Garden Oaks which is super neighborhood #12 according to the map they referenced and had a link to.

  • Tear it down already! Why should this hulking blight be preserved? We routinely destroy old neighborhoods / homes / historic structures in this city – so why not apply the same standard in this case?

  • that nerdwallet article is a bit flawed.
    yes, I’d absolutely say that 3rd ward deserves to be mentioned in a list of ‘millennial’ locations to live, but no way should it top the list, crime data would knock it down a few rungs.

  • I’m sure this study was fudged in favor of Ed’s recommendations since he’s the one that paid for it.
    How long will it take for everyone to (yawn) tour this decaying hulk and pay the parking and admission
    fees to walk all over this park before it goes out of favor.
    Not long. I’m sure that every person in Houston will go out once just to see what was done but then what. Once you walk around the place you might bring your visiting relatives to see it once and then you won’t go back. After the initial curiosity you have to wonder if enough people will come out on a regular basis to walk around the astrodome for $25.00 a head with fees parking and concessions to pay off $250,000,000.00. Thats a lot of zero’s. It’s a waste of Tax Payers money and time.
    And besides all that logic are they going to plant astroturf trees and plants since nothing will grow inside the Dome.
    Kids look, theres a synthetic oak and a rubber tree. They look so real and you can almost smell the flowers.
    Give me and the dome a break and just create a park and Memorial to the dome where it used to stand.

  • @Michael: Why don’t we tear down the Astrodome? Because democracy. We keep voting on what to do next. When we ask people if they want to fix it up, they say “no”. When we ask people if they want to tear it down, they say “no”. I imagine if we asked them if they want to do nothing except keep paying to let it slowly decay they’d say “no” to that, too. If we put multiple options on the ballot and forced voters to pick one, it would probably be a tie, and then a series of lawsuits about how the ballot was worded.
    Sometimes it takes an autocrat.

  • @Memebag: Then let the autocrat pay for it.

  • @bobr
    (and don’t feel like I’m picking on you here, others have no historic knowledge of the dome either, you are just the latest)
    regarding the rubber trees and astroturf, you do realize that grass doesn’t grow in the dome because the skylights were painted over, don’t you? The first few years of the dome it had real grass that really grew. it wasn’t until they painted over the skylights because baseball players complained they couldn’t see the balls when the sun was hitting the skylights just so that they painted over them, and then the grass started dying, and then they tossed the astroturf in there.
    so I’m sure part of the plan is to remove the paint from the skylights, or put in new skylights. Not to mention with LED technology having advanced, I’m sure they’ll be able to supplement the natural light with some fake light which is of the appropriate wavelengths to simulate the various times of year.
    that being said, I hope that the texans and rodeo pick up the tab for the parking, since they are the ones that will benefit the most from that part of it, that drops the bill to the taxpayers by over a million. and I’m sure that’s why that part of the plan exists, to make them happy by adding parking. This really seems like a win all around, except for the people who want to see it demolished.

  • the entire plan exists to benefit the HLSR and the Texans, two private and very much profit-oriented organizations. the dome has been screwing over taxpayers since the day it went up and no taxpayer benefits from retrofitting a functionally obsolete building with grandiose intentions and no financially stable plan for revenue or maintenance in place. there’s a very good reason why taxpayers are expected to pick up the tab for every new astrodome plan that comes out, they’re the only suckers left standing.

  • All of the population growth in Greater Third is happening north of Elgin and west of Sauer, where speculators cleared out the shotgun shacks over the last fifteen years and the vacant lots are now sprouting new townhomes. East of Sauer is still too black for the gentrifiers. And south of Alabama looks pretty much the same as it did 65 years ago.
    The growth in the Elgin/Sauer quadrant has created an amusing dynamic where smalltime spec investors are all piling into South of Alabama thinking it’s going to appreciate any day now, to where the asking price of a Single-Family is 2x-3x the price of a Duplex of equivalent square footage. Presumably, the people purchasing duplexes are willing to look at the cap rate, while the people purchasing single family homes are thinking “CUTE!!11″… until the appraiser shows up and throws cold water on everyone.
    None of the speculators are all that interested in sussing out the *actual* price of a brick two-story in a still very crime-ridden neighborhood, so this has created a bit of a renter’s market, at least if you’re interested in renting a large single family home with hardwood floors and barred windows. I got a great deal, and so can you.

  • Personally, I’d rather see the Incarnate Word convent saved over the Astrodome.

  • Toasty,
    Your not picking on me. I’ve been here since 1954. I played in the marching band that played for one of the first games the Astros played before the roof was painted, because the outfielders couldn’t see the balls against the glare. I’ve been to more events in the astrodome than I can count, including football, basketball, Brewster Mcloud premiere, OTC shows, rodeos, the Rolling Stones, and all kinds of other events. I know the pplace pretty well.
    So I don’t need your history lesson.
    I also don’t want to go to a fake park inside the astrodome with simulated LED lighting, fake trees and grass.
    There has not been one really good plan for the dome except to save the steel structure and build a park around it.
    You need a reality check if you think the county, the texans or the rodeo are going to give you free parking.
    It’s time has come and gone. They tore down Yankee stadium and that had a lot more history than the dome.
    Im more upset about losing the incarnate Word school building by Nicholas Clayton.

  • I want the Astrodome to be renovated, but I wish they hadn’t mentioned public funding. It’s a huge political strike against the project. In the minds of a lot of people, public funding = tax hike. So we’ll see how long this latest proposal for the Astrodome lasts, until it goes down in flames like all the proposals before it.
    On the other hand, if we’re going to host Super Bowl 2017, then we’re at a point where most would argue it’s time to either shit or get off the pot on the Astrodome. Renovate the thing, once and for all (which would be my preference, if we can get it) or tear it down. So maybe this proposal will have some staying power? We’ll see.

  • @Michael: We’re going to pay for it, no matter what happens. We pay to fix it up, we pay to tear it down or we pay to do nothing. If we do nothing long enough it will cost us more than fixing it or tearing it down, and that looks like what we’re going to do.