Comment of the Day: When Pennzoil Made a Dent in the Skyline

COMMENT OF THE DAY: WHEN PENNZOIL MADE A DENT IN THE SKYLINE “That compliment was a little tongue-in-cheek… she was referring to Houston as being entirely a car and freeway-based city. But she was ecstatic about Pennzoil Place (said it had the biggest impact on a city skyline since the Empire State Building), and made that comment in a review of it. Huxtable was the first newspaper architecture critic, and now a bunch of papers have one (Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, etc.). Will the Chronicle ever?” [Mike, commenting on Kick a Building In Memoriam]

5 Comment

  • I think it’s going to be a long time before we get an architecture critic at a major paper, especially when most of our architecture has more to do with floorplate efficiencies and market rate return than the nuances of form or flow. I won’t hold my breath for one, but I’ll quietly cross my fingers.

  • The Houston Chron has reporters? Wow, Who Knew?

  • I think things like architecture critics come about when you are in a city that has competition within the newspaper industry. You may recall back when Houston was a two paper town, the reporting was significantly better. The Chronicle/Hearst sees no need to spend money and improve the quality of their publication if they don’t have to.

  • Think there would be any interest in a weekly radio show focused on architecture + design at, say, KPFT?

  • Lisa Gray I guess is our general architecture, arts, and overall urban living critic, but it’s not a specialized architecture position. I imagine the Chronicle thinks that if they were to bring on a full-time architecture critic, people would howl that they were catering to stuffy elitism, etc.

    But there are bigger fish to be fried. I don’t think we’ve had a full-time book critic in a long time. I think movies and tv might be the only arts that get covered on a regular basis.