07/05/17 2:15pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: WHEN THEY MOVE THE NEIGHBORHOOD TO SELL THE HOME “I think the branding is more about attracting people to an open house. Future buyers scanning online listings are going skip right past something that says Fifth Ward, but might give a second glance at something labeled EaDo (bars! restaurants! sports!). Then, if you get them to look at the place, that’s when you hard sell. And homebuyers and renters for the most part don’t really care about neighborhood designations. I certainly think it’s disrespectful to the histories of these neighborhood and like most gentrification issues there’s undertones of racism and classism. But I’ve met a lot of people who live in GOOF, Shady Acres, Timbergrove, etc., and if you ask where they live, they just say ‘The Heights —either for shorthand or because they don’t even know their neighborhood’s name.” [Pitts, commenting on Renaming Acres Homes; Bringing Back Curbside Glass Recycling] Illustration: Lulu

07/10/15 1:00pm

WHAT IF LOCAL REPORTERS COULD KEEP THEIR HOUSTON NEIGHBORHOODS STRAIGHT? Screenshot of KHOU Report on Shooting in Independence Heights, HoustonMaybe by being more specific and accurate about the locations they describe, suggests Christopher Andrews, teevee news reporters could help Houston learn a little more about itself: “I sometimes wonder how much more we as citizens could learn about our cities if our local news media accurately described the neighborhoods in our cities. A shooting occurred in the Independence Heights neighborhood of Houston early Wednesday morning. Independence Heights is a neighborhood just north of Houston’s I-610 loop. It is home to what most claim was ‘Texas’ first self-governing African-American community.’ When Houston’s local news media covered the shooting, it was described as a shooting ‘in the Heights-area.‘ Would viewers not know where Independence Heights is located? Well, sure, it was near the Heights. But how close is near? Another outlet described it as ‘north Houston.’ Again, how far north of Downtown Houston is ‘north Houston’? Houston is a gigantic city, so north Houston should be more than a few miles from its center. The site of the shooting is approximately a half mile north of Houston’s I-610 loop, which serves as the northern border of what is known as the Houston Heights neighborhood. (To be technical, Sunset Heights is the subdivision name north of the Houston Heights proper.) This is part a further trend in Houston of simply attaching ‘-Heights’ to neighborhoods or developments in hope of invoking the charm of the Houston Heights proper. (I’m sure this can be said of many other neighborhoods in other cities as well.)” [Not of It] Screenshot: KHOU

04/03/13 10:15am

Map of Houston from Houstonia Magazine

This is a Houston that no one’s ever seen: The lines in the swamp have been drawn for new monthly magazine Houstonia’s inaugural issue, which landed on newsstands last Thursday. This map’s “competing fiefdoms” suggest what’s really happening here: Those of you north of I-10 are now making a home in “The Hypes.” And that up-and-coming former industrial wasteland east of Downtown’s been dubbed “New Montrose.” West of the Galleria? That’s “Breastheimer.” South of I-10 near Memorial Park and the Loop is “Hogg Heaven” and “Pretensia,” just east, of course, of the mansions in “Pricey Point.” And Midtown’s been divided by the light rail, split into West “Hipstamatica” and East “Yuppie Tenements.”

Drawing: Dan Derozier