Monthly Planner June 2020
City of Houston Planning & Development Department
City of Houston Planning & Development Department
On May 28, the Planning Commission unanimously approved the proposed Walkable Places and Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) ordinances, as well as the proposed Hogan, Midtown and Emancipation Walkable Place Pilot Area Plans. We look forward to the adoption of the ordinances by city council which will assist the City to design, build, and maintain a vibrant pedestrian environment for Houston to grow responsibly and sustainably.
The Walkable Places program was considered after three years of planning and community engagement for a safer, more appealing, and equitable streetscape for all users. Walkable Places design elements include building design rules and criteria to regulate the minimum requirements of the ground floor facade elements such as windows, doors, shading structures, and decorative features to create an interaction between the building and the pedestrian realm, or, the area that people walk in. For more program details, visit the Walkable Places web site, and view the Walkable Place Pilot Area Plans.
The Wisdom of Crowds: Almost a year ago, Mayor Sylvester Turner asked the Planning & Development Department to facilitate a series of community dialogues on the North Houston Highway Improvement Project (NHHIP), TxDOT’s planned reconstruction of I-45. We immediately jumped in with the goal of improving the project, not only for those who travel through the area, but also for those who live and work within the area.
Our I-45 team, which included Huitt Zollars and the University of Houston Community Design Resource Center, worked tirelessly with City departments, agency partners, and neighborhood groups up and down the corridor. After months of workshops, community meetings and lots of technical analysis, we provided Mayor Turner with recommendations for improvements that align with both City and TxDOT goals for the project. On May 12, the Mayor sent a letter to Laura Ryan of the Texas Transportation Commission, detailing over 12 pages the City’s comprehensive vision for the project. You can find that letter here: NHHIP letter.
I encourage you to read it in full, especially if you’ve written us or spoken up at one of our many meetings. Without your involvement, without the community’s collective voice weighing in on this important topic, we would never have reached this pivotal milestone.
Margaret Wallace Brown
Director, Planning & Development Department
The Spaghetti Warehouse, a popular Houston icon, is situated on the banks of Buffalo Bayou, within the local historic district of Main Street–Market Square in downtown Houston.
The building was first constructed as a storehouse for the Southern Pacific Railroad. Built circa 1900, the two-story commercial warehouse building has stood the test of time and evolved into a beloved landmark where Houstonians have shared countless memories as the Spaghetti Warehouse Restaurant since 1975.
Also known as the the Desel-Boettcher Building, the building is situated on Buffalo Bayou and Allen’s Landing. In 2017, Hurricane Harvey inundated the building with floodwaters, but in the relentless spirit of Houston, the owners and developers embarked on the project to secure this popular landmark for the future.
Recent rehabilitation of the exterior and interior adaptation efforts maintain the integrity of the Desel-Boettcher Building with the memorable charm of the Spaghetti Warehouse Restaurant. The project is integral to preserving part of the historic central core in Houston while integrating twenty-first century water management principles. This endeavor serves as an example of planning adaption for coastal cities, future planning for Houston, and as a preservation model.
The Desel-Bottcher Building, better known locally as The Spaghetti Warehouse, is a remarkable example of merging current planning techniques with a historic setting. Read more about preserving Houston’s history on our Historic Office of Preservation web site.
Everyone deserves safe, accessible streets and sidewalks. No loss of life on is acceptable. That’s why Houston is committed to ending traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030. Take the pledge to be part of the solution!
Vision Zero Houston prioritizes safety and accessibility in street design for people of all ages and abilities. It's a comprehensive and holistic approach to safer streets that supports the common good and enhances the quality of life for all Houstonians.
Join us on Tuesday, June 9, for the Vision Zero Virtual Open House. Pop in anytime between 4pm-8pm to discuss the City of Houston’s commitment to end traffic deaths and serious injuries on Houston streets by 2030.
Visit www.visionzerohouston.com for more information. For questions, call 832-393-6660 or send an email to [email protected].
To effectively navigate through the global coronavirus pandemic, Mayor Sylvester Turner has updated the Resilient Houston plan to include a COVID-19 addendum to guide the city's response to this public health crisis and associated economic impacts.
Resilient Houston is the city's strategy for responding and recovering from unexpected shocks and systemic stresses, such as a hurricane, flooding, cyberattacks, or terrorism. Click to read Resilient Houston and the COVID-19 addendum (page 174-176.)
A Resiliency and COVID-19 press release is here. Stay safe, Houston, as we navigate these interesting times with a plan, and with spirit and vigor!