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Westheimer Construction
Public Meeting
Levy Park Redevelopment
Public Art-James Surls
Surls on Kirby:
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Upper Kirby Update 

March 21, 2014   

Upper Kirby Construction
Westheimer Demolition Begins        

 

Westheimer  

Paving, Drainage and  Streetscape Improvements Project: 

 

Utility work on Westheimer between Buffalo Speedway and Kirby began last week with the initial traffic control setup at Buffalo Speedway. Though rain over the weekend stalled the initial setup until Monday, crews were able to make good progress on pavement demolition through the week.

Over the weekend and next week, work will be focused primarily on boring under the existing St. John's tunnel system just east of the Buffalo/Westheimer intersection and back-filling that area. 

As was the case east of Shepherd, construction will be undertaken in 1000-foot segments. Work on this stretch will impact the two eastbound lanes on the south side of Westheimer. Traffic will be shifted to one lane in either direction through the construction zone. Each 1000-foot segment is expected to take four to five weeks to complete. Once a given segment is completed, it will be restored with asphalt and opened prior to the next segment beginning.

The contract duration on this project is 120 days putting completion somewhere around June/July 2014. Weather permitting, roadway construction between Kirby and Shepherd should be able to begin immediately following utility completion west of Kirby.

 

CenterPoint and the telecommunications companies will follow behind duct bank construction reconnecting services underground. The duration of this reconnection work will be up to the utility providers though 45 to 90 days is typical. Traffic impact during this work is negligible.  

 

Once the utilities have been removed and the lines brought underground west of Kirby, Upper Kirby will move forward with drainage and underground infrastructure improvements followed by complete repaving of the roadway. The project will also entail the installation of a pedestrian-oriented streetscape similar to the treatment provided on the recent Kirby Drive and Buffalo Speedway projects. This work will first be completed between Shepherd and Kirby followed by an identical scope of work between Kirby and Buffalo Speedway.  

 

Roadway reconstruction is anticipated to last approximately 10 months. Drainage improvement and roadway reconstruction between Kirby and Buffalo will immediately follow and will have a similar approximate duration. 

 

For more information on Upper Kirby construction and related activities or for construction related issues or concerns, please contact Travis Younkin at 713.524.8000 or travis@upperkirby.org.   

Public Meeting Notice
Upper Kirby Mobility Improvement Plan Update         
Livable Centers Workshop 2010

 

The Upper Kirby Management District, in coordination with the Upper Kirby Redevelopment Authority, will be hosting a public meeting to discuss the 2014 Upper Kirby Mobility Improvement Plan on March 25th at 6:00 p.m. at 3015 Richmond Avenue, Houston, Texas. The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss the conceptual development and implementation of Upper Kirby's pedestrian and transit related infrastructure.  

 

The plan, first created in 2007, provides a conceptual vision for a pedestrian friendly environment in Upper Kirby. The plan is structured around a program sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration called the Livable Communities Initiative. This program allows for the expenditure of federal funding on infrastructure projects that promote or facilitate access to transit service.  

 

Improvements in this vein include:  

  • Wide, accessible sidewalks  
  • comprehensive curb and gutter systems 
  • wheel-chair access ramps
  • pedestrian lighting
  • street trees
  • updated and upgraded transit amenities (shelters, benches) where appropriate.  

 

The development of the 2007 plan has been influential in the funding and development of streetscape improvements on Kirby Drive, Wakeforest, and Buffalo Speedway. Upcoming streetscape improvements are also planned for Westheimer and Eastside.  

Upper Kirby has developed this latest iteration of the Mobility Improvement Plan in order to continue the planned expansion of functional pedestrian connectivity to transit.

 

The public meeting will consist of a brief presentation, followed by a question and answer session and an opportunity to provide public comment.

 

    


Levy Park to be Renovated Alongside Midway's Kirby Grove Development
Synergistic Projects Will Create 11-Acre Urban Activity Center for the Community
Artistic Rendering Looking West from Wakeforest
















Envisioned as the new heart of the Upper Kirby District, a multi-million-dollar heritage project will soon reorient, rebuild and reinvigorate Levy Park with curated, year-round programming, native landscaping, playscapes, water features, a performance pavilion, an event lawn, a community garden and dog park, while activating its edges with new development.Encompassing Class A office space, multi-family, retail and restaurant elements, Kirby Grove is intended to further solidify Upper Kirby as a destination for Houstonians and visitors with facets that complement and encourage park use from morning through night.

 

Following a rigorous application process, Midway, the award-winning, Houston-based developer of CITYCENTRE, GreenStreet and Kings Harbor, has secured a 99-year ground lease agreement to develop key, park-adjacent parcels that comprise Kirby Grove.The partnership between Midway and the Upper Kirby District will not only activate the park with complementary uses, but will also fund the majority of Levy Park's renovations, as well as the ongoing maintenance and programming for the next 99 years.

 

"We are honored to be involved in an endeavor that we feel will bring a new dimension to the Upper Kirby District by creating a world-class gathering place for the neighborhood and a strategic model for future park development in Houston," said  Jonathan Brinsden, Midway's Chief Executive Officer.

 

The approximately $10-million park renovation is the culmination of efforts that began 17 years ago when the Levy Park Steering Committee was first established.  Since that time, the Upper Kirby District has nearly doubled the original footprint of the park while acquiring six acres of perimeter property for enhanced accessibility and visibility, parking and street improvements, plus complementary, buffer development.

 

According to Upper Kirby's President and Executive Director, Jamie Brewster, "Getting to this exciting step has taken a great deal of time and research, including exhaustive studies with Project for Public Spaces and Livable Centers, but we feel the results will be well worth the wait.By incorporating programmatic and pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use components, we see a great future for Levy Park as a vital and ongoing asset to this district and its growth."

 

Houston-based landscape architecture firm, The Office of James Burnett, will oversee the park's redesign.  OJB has built a reputation with thoughtfully conceived, landmark installations that reinforce a sense of place, including CityCenter in Las Vegas, CITYCENTRE in Houston, Playa Vista Central Park in Los Angeles, Klyde Warren Park in Dallas, River Point in Chicago and Arboleda in Monterrey, Mexico.  At this time, plans have been submitted to the City and are awaiting final approval.

 

Kirby Grove construction is currently underway with the groundbreaking on the park renovation to officially commence this summer.  It is anticipated that completion of the park renovation and the Kirby Grove project will coincide as early as next spring.

 

For more information on this installation, contact 713.524.8000 or travis@upperkirby.org.   
Surls on Kirby 
Tree and Three Flowers Coming in 2014
James Surls' Tree & Three Flowers

Surls on Kirby  

  

The Upper Kirby District Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is coordinating a monumental public art installation that will place an original James Surls sculpture entitled, Tree & Three Flowers in the Kirby Drive median just south of Westheimer Road. 

 

Seen by over 50,000 cars per day, this sculpture will immediately become one of Houston's most visible and iconic art installations ever.

 

Tree &Three Flowers is a 30-foot tall steel and bronze sculpture that is intended to signify growth and potential, to act as a magnet for tourism and commercial patronage, to inspire citizen's creativity and to add dramatically to the community's sense of place. It is intended to be a collaboration of the community taking ownership in its cultural and civic identity and relaying that identity on a local, national and international level to the residents, business owners, patrons and visitors that pass by every day.

 

Just minutes from Houston's museum district and just blocks from Gallery Row on Colquitt, the Tree & Three Flowers sculpture echoes loudly the love of art and culture that has long been part of the Houston landscape.

 

The Surls on Kirby is a 50/50 public private partnership leveraging TIRZ and Management District participation as well as private donations to make this project a reality.

 

Become a part of the strong cultural tradition in Houston and help us relay that message to the rest of the world.

 

Donate Now.

 

 

For more information on this installation, contact 713.524.8000 or travis@upperkirby.org.   
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Upper Kirby is a constantly evolving urban area marked by an outstanding location, great shopping, unique residential neighborhoods, smart development and a small town feel. It is an area of successful businesses, involved communities and a synergy between the public and private sectors. It is the heartbeat of Houston and everywhere you want to be.