Potted Plants Now Loitering on the Midtown Benches Along Main St., Refusing To Leave

Here’s some of the new plant life that’s just recently sprung up on the bench outside the Mid Main Lofts near Holman St. (top) and at the southwest corner of Main and Winbern streets (above) outside Double Trouble Caffeine & Cocktails. Along with another trio stuck to the identical rusty block on the east side of Main at Winbern, they’ve been literally glued to their seats for the past few days, taking over the 3 public rest areas that appeared along with others adjacent to METRO’s Ensemble/HCC Red Line stop roughly a year ago.

The Midtown Redevelopment Authority — the entity responsible for most of the gardening that goes on in the neighborhood’s public right of wayruled itself out as the planter yesterday morning, saying it’s looking into how the greenery got there in the first place.

Photos: Allyn West

You Can’t Sit With Us

19 Comment

  • I’m guessing someone wanted to prevent bums from using that Winbern bench for sleeping (day or night). And, the other plants prevent laying a piece of plywood for a sleeping surface.

  • Someone’s a real a-hole and I hope they find planters glued to their car hood and their front door someday.

  • @Sid
    Normally I’d agree, but frankly I’d rather have potted plants than panhandlers glued to those surfaces.
    Shame on whoever performed these acts of vandalism (and BTW, there’s a similar sign at Bremond. Just sayin’….)

  • Camden Midtown removed the benches along the outside of its complex years ago. I’ll give you three guess why but you should only need one. This is no different that strategically placed armrests in airport chairs or spikes on signs/edges for pigeons.

  • the bigotry of the average houstonian ears it’s ugly head again…if people of lower socio-economic status bother you there are plenty of homogeneous suburbs to move to.


  • @cmoney
    I don’t think “bigotry” is the proper word there. Homelessness is a condition, not a belief or opinion.
    And for the record, I don’t think it’s the fact that they are of a “lower socio-economic status” that bothers the majority of people. It’s the fact that many of Houston’s homeless are very aggressive with approaching people on sidewalks or cars at intersections. They can be very intimidating, especially at night.
    I had a person the other evening approach my car at Richmond near Spur 527 who was obviously wasted/high. After I politely waved him off after he crossed two lanes of traffic to get to my car, he punched the door of my car. Not cool.

  • Potted plants are way better than beer cans, trash, and feces.

  • (3) ‘Public Rest Areas’ is code for local bum meth head hangout. Folks who go their shit together ain’t stopping here for a rest while they catch their breath. Props to whoever glued them in place.

  • @cmoney
    As a person of lower socio-economic status, I’m grateful that you’ve chosen to spring to my defense. Among the daily challenges I face is being assailed by humans who spend their days lounging in the shadows of buildings, under bridges, at bus shelters and rail stations. A significant number while away the hours drinking, by smoking weed or kush or crack, funding these recreations by breaking into parked cars and aggressive panhandling.
    However, I choose to not participate in these activities. I don’t enjoy the smell of stale urine on a hot summer day, or dodging human feces on the sidewalk or on my front lawn, or picking up the litter and discarded clothing they leave behind.
    Meanwhile, the shelters that have been set up to help these humans are below capacity on all but the coldest winter nights. I see no reason to encourage a lifestyle that in some cases represents a choice.

  • god forbid someone approach you while you’re rolling around in your luxurious metal box!

  • @No More Tears
    I’m going to assume that you’re being sarcastic, but in case you’re not:
    1. It’s extremely dangerous to have people jetting out into and across intersections when you don’t expect them to. I’ve seen several panhandlers almost get hit, and happened upon people who had been hit on more than one occasion. It’s ok though, they get a ride in an ambulance to Ben Taub and they’re eventually back on the streets—same thing as when they OD, get in fights, etc. Great use of tax dollars.
    2. It slows down traffic too. I’ve seen panhandlers intentionally stand in front of cars yelling at the driver, and others who are so wasted they just kind of sway back and forth, barely staying upright, in between lanes while cars try to make it by safely.
    3. Really, you think that it’s acceptable that while you’re sitting in your vehicle at an intersection, minding your own business, people will come up to your car and aggressively attempt to get your attention by standing in front of your car, knocking on your window, or even hitting your car, mirror, etc.? Wow.
    I drive through the Wheeler/Richmond skidrow on a nearly daily basis as part of my commute. If some of you “holier than thou” types, such as yourself, saw the things I see on a daily basis, I think you’d have a much different attitude.

  • I am with Donald (Not That One) – this has been going on for two years at Wheeler with no help from the city.

    There is a trend among people who don’t have to deal with daily harassment, they spit on everyone who does. I say harassment because it isn’t just one person holding a sign asking for money, it is the baseball bats to your car, the standing in front of all traffic until someone gives them money, the 4-5 people knocking on your window one after another, the opening of your door if it is unlocked… this isn’t just someone approaching your car and I can say with 100% confidence that my honda fit does not count as a luxury vehicle.

    There are truly homeless out there that want to get help and out of their situations and then there’s people that are rotating between being high on kush and harassing people for money to get more kush.

  • Those passive-aggressive potted plants will last oh about 2 weeks max. Then they’re mysteriously gone! Just go ahead and spikes in their place.

  • FYI. A good number of those homeless people choose to stay homeless so they can stay high-they’re chronic
    addicts who do NOT follow the programs rules/regulations and would rather be on the streets getting high- on whatever they’re on. I experienced homelessness in 1989 in Ohio. The rules were strict there: they did not tolerate clients being drunk /high. Either get sober and into a 12 step program or you were tossed out and banned. DON’T give the homeless $$$-when you go to give ’em $$ they’ll steal your wallet /purse,etc. You’re only feeding their addictions. Which they perpetuate.

  • As Donald, gentrified snitch, and Happy Go Lucky have pointed out, those of us who live and work near the Wheeler transit center see the chronic drug-users begging for money. All day, every day.
    These aren’t the “oh, they are Lifetime Homeless Movie of the Week candidates”. These are people who aggressively shake down passers-by for money to feed a DRUG addiction. Get cash, buy drugs, use, and then start panhandling when the high wears off.
    The smart thing is to NOT give money. Otherwise, you are just enabling their drug habit. Sometimes tough love is the best love.

  • I ride my bike through that area several times a week. I see a bunch of homeless people, a lot of drug dealing but very few panhandlers. They never bother me while I’m on my bike.

  • I wish someone with some design sense would help me with my properties in the area. It’s like the design part of my brain was damaged in birth.

  • My 2 cents on benches, or lack thereof:

    1. Last time I visited Manhattan I had severe back problems and I was desperate to find places to stop/sit/rest. Guess what. There were NONE. And it was intentional design by the city. Even a few planters I tried to sit on were topped with such an acute angle of concrete that it was too painful.

    2. I was driving through midtown a few years ago and saw a woman drop her drawers and take a dump while gripping both hands on a public bench with 2 guys sitting there. They didn’t even seem to care and this was in 5 PM rush hour traffic in broad daylight, near Randall’s.