A Wetter Way To Follow the Story of Houston’s Historic Sprawl

Houston: A Story of Sprawl in 5 Coasters, by Data Design Co.

Have you seen this video (at top) from the city’s planning and development department? It’s silent, several years old, and not the flashiest portrait of Houston available on YouTube. But in a compelling series of images, it shows how mightily the city’s official boundaries have grown — simply by tracking Houston’s annexation history, decade by decade.

But now there’s a more active way to appreciate Houston’s historically bulging waistline — one that could even help increase your own in the process (depending on your choice of beverages). Each of the 5 laser-cut acrylic coasters in Data Design Co.‘s limited-edition set (shown in the photo above) is etched with an outline of this ever-expanding city at some point in its history. Designers Brian Barr and Matthew Wettergreen had the sets manufactured in Houston by Post-Studio, and are now offering them for sale for $60. Buy a set, and try one beverage on each over the course of an evening of thirst-quenching, and you’ll allow yourself to drink in a progressive view of this city’s expansive growth.


Houston: A Story of Sprawl in 5 Coasters, by Data Design Co.

“Stack them together or compare them side by side and you’ve got a visual representation of the unique phenomenon of Houston’s sprawl,” suggests Sarah Rufca, who introduced the product on the Houstonia website. For an even more realistic demonstration of Houston’s unique geographic features, be sure to fill your glasses with plenty of ice — and let them sit on the coasters overnight.

Houston: A Story of Sprawl in 5 Coasters, by Data Design Co.

Video: City of Houston Planning & Development Dept. Photos: Data Design Co.

Pushing Boundaries

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