Here’s a whizzy reel showing what the new Metro trains and stations on 4 upcoming light-rail lines are supposed to look like. Dowling St. in the Third Ward, the Edloe Station in Greenway Plaza, the Moody Park Station on the North Line, MacGregor Park Station on the Southeast Line, and Lockwood Station on the East End Line each get about 30 seconds of CGI treatment, from a low-flying camera buzzing some extremely lifelike — though torpid — pedestrians.
Christof Spieler finds a few flaws:
The Third Ward footage seems to be out-of-date; it shows the old alignment crossing Dowling on Wheeler, not the new route that switches to Alabama. But other details are correct: the stations shown are the new prototype station design (by Rey de la Reza Architects), minus artwork.
It’s nice to be able to visualize what these lines might look like. But it’s also a reminder that it’s important to get the details right. At Edloe, for example, the trees integrated into the canopy are nice, but there’s no crosswalk at the west end of the station platform, which means a 500-foot detour for some riders. The Moody Park and MacGregor stations do show that crosswalk, and the sidewalks look pretty good, too. But in all the images, the overhead wires are suspended from their own poles in the middle of the street, not from the streetlight poles on either side, as on Main Street. That makes for more poles and a more cluttered streetscape.
The decidedly car-friendly big-box development shown springing up at the 18-acre former Stewart & Stevenson property on Lockwood and Harrisburg at the end of the video, Spieler notes, is
unfortunately, pretty accurate. That’s an actual project; the developer, Frank Liu, has been trying to find tenants for building retail up to the sidewalk but the only tenant he’s found so far is CVS, which is building its typical pad site box on the corner part of the site.
- Visualizing the new light rail lines [Intermodality]
- Houston Light Rail Sims [The Overhead Wire]
- Houston Light Rail [NC3D]