Voting on Houston’s First General Plan; Delayed ‘Exxon Effect’


Photo of Market Square Tower: Marc Longoria via Swamplot Flickr Pool


9 Comment

  • I am wondering why developers are so surprised that all 10,000 employees chose not to move up to The Woodlands or buy? First, ExxonMobil already employs thousands of people in the Houston metro — many of whom live up north and many others who live within 30 minutes of its new campus. Only a fraction (2K-3K were coming from out of state). Second, just because one is moving from out of state doesn’t mean that one wants to buy a home right away, as the article suggested. Before purchasing my first home, my wife and I spent months getting to know neighborhoods before settling down in one that we really love. The last thing one should do is get themselves into a 15 or 30-year mortgage and then hate the neighborhood they bought in to. Third, prices got inflated so quickly, I’m surprised that so many people chose to buy up north. A lot of what is on the market up north is overpriced and and dated.

  • So Exxon employees don’t want to move out to the boonies to live next to their bosses and co-workers? They’re not just lemmings ready to spend $$$ on overpriced real estate that’s been hiked up in anticipation of something that hasn’t even been completed? I’m dumbfounded.

  • The “Exxon Effect” is such a fallacy. Before there was this new campus, there was Compaq – just as ground breaking.

    I worked there for a number of years. The majority of the employees did NOT want to live near campus.

    As nice at the houses were, we jokingly called that area the “Comapq Slums”. Nobody wants to see your boss at the grocery, or getting their oiled changes, on the weekends.

    Exxon is banking on you working 13 hours days, which is why the on campus “perks” run the gamut from daycare to health care.

    To live right behind campus would be the modern day version of “selling your soul to the company store”.

  • MidotwnCoog, to the contrary, I know a lot of employees that do want to live relatively close because they want a short commute. There’s also the typical crowd that doesn’t want to sell their souls to the burbs and live in the Heighs instead. Their on-campus perks, while nice, are not nice enough to keep people working there “13 hours a day.” You’d need to to to a Google/Facebook level of perks for something like that.

  • Maybe I’m just an inner loop Montrose snob, but why would someone want to live way up there? I’m all for NOT commuting, but at least if you work up north, and live where it doesn’t suck, you can reverse commute.

  • Having lived both in the Woodlands and Montrose I can honestly say I’d much rather live in Woodlands again. It’s cleaner, it’s safer, it’s quieter, etc. More importantly I couldn’t find a single benefit of living in Montrose, I’m not going to walk to the same restaurant over and over, I’m not going to drag my groceries 4 blocks, I don’t like driving around 271 potholes every day.

  • Cody, the short answer is people don’t want to commute their entire lives when there is no reason to. Having lived in the city many years and near Montrose, I spend almost zero time in Montrose. I drive through it every day, but spend time in my neighborhood or in the village. If I had to live up north, I’d pick The Woodlands over Spring any day (even though Spring is technically not a town and The Woodlands uses Spring, TX addresses).

  • The kind of folks with a lifestyle that would lead them to choose living in the woodlands typically have vastly different priorities than that of someone with a lifestyle that would lead them to choose living in the montrose. It’s not like there’s anything to agree or disagree on here, but I am glad there’s places like the woodlands to help lessen demand for inner city housing.

  • This is not about Montrose vs. The Woodlands. This is about living in the backyard of your place of employment.

    If Exxon was in Montrose the argument is the same. Nobody wants to see your boss at the grocery or getting your oil changed on Saturday.