11/11/13 11:30am

THE WOODLANDS’ NO-FAULT DEFENSE The Woodlands Development Company is trying to hold the line in its legal battle against a growing number of homeowners claiming that repeated damage to their homes is the result of movement along 3 separate geological faults running through the community. According to reporter Cindy Horswell, the company is going further than simply claiming that the building and ground cracks and resulting new alignments in the properties must have been the result of something other than surface fault lines. A statement penned by developer spokesperson Susan Vreeland-Wendt appears to claim the fault lines do not exist: “We have done actual testing, and none of the testing that we’ve done to date has found any evidence of an active fault line in proximity to any Woodlands residence.” That contradicts the claims of the now 2-dozen families from the Carlton Woods, Alden Bridge, Cochran’s Crossing, and Sterling Ridge neighborhoods involved in or about to join the lawsuit, which was originally filed in March of this year, who say a 1993 letter proves the developer knew about the problem. “The plaintiffs’ attorneys say five different geologists have verified the existence of at least three fault lines — Big Barn, the longest and most active line that runs about 33 miles underground from a salt dome near Hockley to the flank of a salt formation near Conroe, as well as two smaller faults, Jones and Panther Branch. The San Jacinto River Authority’s geological report also recently pinpointed these same surface faults when working on plans to install a new 52-inch pipe to bring water into The Woodlands. To protect from the shifting soils, a special flexible pipe will be used wherever the pipe crosses a fault zone. ‘They do exist, and they are active,’ said Mark Smith, division manager over the water authority’s water project.” [Houston Chronicle ($)] Fault-line map: KHOU

09/14/12 4:18pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: A FEW BUMPS ON THE WAY TO A HOME SALE “There is a decent fault line map at this url. Much more than this and you would need to contact the GIS department at Harris County Flood Control (I think). The Long Point fault is interesting. More interesting to me was the Pecore fault in the Heights. I bought a home with no disclosure from the prior owner or the inspector. All the neighbors knew but I did not know them. Went to sell it after remodeling the property and it comes up. Obvious when I drive that area now. Ultimately it was a disclosure item but not an issue at sale.” [sboney, commenting on Yards of Yard in Britmore Oaks]

09/13/12 2:40pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: A NARROW, GENTLE EARTHQUAKE ZONE ON HOUSTON’S WEST SIDE “. . . The Long Point fault cuts straight through the area, hitting brittmore just south of I-10, crossing saint mary’s just to the west, then going through wycliffe and Wilchester, crossing Kirkwood just south of Memorial. It goes all the way down to around Whittington just west of Dairy Ashford. But if you don’t buy a house directly on the fault, you’ll be fine. Judging from the location of this house and where the Long Point fault map shows the fault, this house should be fine. Its neighbor to the west, maybe not.” [Lost_In_Translation, commenting on Yards of Yard in Britmore Oaks]

09/24/09 11:25pm

Who won the prizes from Houston. It’s Worth It.?

For this week’s game four of you guessed Sugar Land. We had 3 guesses each for “the Champions/1960 area,” Missouri City, Silverlake, Cypress, and Atascocita. Two votes each for “near Highway 6,” Eagle Springs, Sienna Plantation, Lake Olympia, and Katy. Single guesses hit Commonwealth, Brightwater, Sweetwater, First Colony, Sugar Mill, Sugar Creek, Sugar Lakes, New Territory, Lexington Colony, Summerwood, Walden, Lake Houston, Longwood, Pearland, Audubon Place (in Pearland), Crystal Lakes, “one of those gated communities near 35,” Meyerland, “that little neighborhood near Bellaire, inside The Loop, by the Home Depot,” Hilshire Village, The Woodlands, southeast Houston, Clear Lake, Lakeside Estates, Lakeside Forest, near the Lakeside Country Club, “Grant Rd./Spring Cypress area,” “somewhere in the Cy-Fair school district, maybe way up 290,” Lake Colony, Bellaire, “the area bordered by 249, 1960, I-45, and Spring-Cypress,” Rodeo Palms, Deer Park, League City, Huffman, Humble, Memorial, Bunker Hill, Greatwood, Kingwood, Lakes of Eldridge, Friendswood, Klein, Copperfield, “toward Crosby,” and West University.

Senorbanity wins an honorable mention for calling this home “a late 80’s or early 90’s Perry McMansion.” But . . . where?

Here’s the winning entry:

My guess that this is somewhere in the Cy-Fair school district, maybe way up 290, and built sometime in the mid to late 90’s. It’s old enough that the landscaping has grown up, but new enough that the builder’s plop-oak in the front yard hasn’t.

Also, I think I know what color the office off the master bedroom is, because my bathroom is the same color. If it’s not Northern Cascades by Benjamin Moore, then it’s the same color, but by Laura Ashley.

Claire, we’re coloring you a prize winner. Here’s what Houston. It’s Worth It. is going to send you: The original Houston. It’s Worth It. book, the new HIWI: Ike book, and HIWI’s new “Hunkered Down” stencil kit. Congratulations!

We had 3 other Cypress-area guesses from runners-up Jessica1, nativesnob, and NWH. All three very close!

Special recognition goes to James, who wrote in with the actual listing, and sent other players in the exact opposite direction with his decoy guess: down I-45 to Deer Park or League City.

So where is this place, really?