Archive for June 24th, 2021

The H-Town I-45 aggression project got put on hold yesterday by the federal government.  Check this from the Chron: 

In a statement, TxDOT spokesman Bob Kaufman said the decision to slow development by FHWA “indefinitely suspends key steps” on a project state and local officials have sought for more than 15 years. 

“It’s unfortunate there is an expanded delay on this project, but TxDOT remains fully committed to working with FHWA and local officials on an appropriate path forward ,” Kaufman said. “We know that many in the community are anxious to see this project advance.” 

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo and Menefee said Wednesday the county remains committed to redesigning the proposal. 

“We do need and our community deserves an I-45 project, Hidalgo said. “We also need a project that respects the wishes of the community.” 

Here is the entire Chron article: Federal officials halt development on TxDOT’s $7 billion rebuild of I-45 (houstonchronicle.com). 

The TxDOT spokesperson wasn’t talking about H-Town and Harris County “local officials” on the “working with” thing.  Nope. 

From the Trib today on ERCOT: 

Last Monday, Texas’ main power grid operator asked Texans, mid-heat wave, to turn their thermostats to 78 degrees during the afternoon and evening for the week to reduce electricity demand on the grid after 12,000 megawatts of power generation unexpectedly went offline — enough to power 2.4 million homes on a hot summer day. 

By the end of the week, that appeal from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas expired without a public announcement, and ERCOT officials still have not said why they asked Texans to cut back on electricity use. 

Were there damages to the power grid infrastructure stemming from February’s deadly winter storm? Were there nefarious actors looking to manipulate the electricity market? What does this mean for power generation during the rest of the hot Texas summer? 

ERCOT hasn’t said — or released data to answer any of these questions raised by industry experts. And that is exactly how the Texas power grid is supposed to work, energy experts said. 

“ERCOT knows what plants fail, but not why,” said Bob King, an energy consultant in Austin who has worked in the Texas energy industry for more than 30 years. 

ERCOT is a quasi-governmental body that manages the state’s power supply; it’s overseen by the Public Utility Commission, a state agency with leaders appointed by the governor. While ERCOT oversees the grid’s daily operations, the grid itself is a network of independent companies, cooperatives and some cities that aren’t required to quickly give ERCOT detailed explanations when power generation goes offline. 

Here is the entire Trib article: ERCOT still doesn’t know why Texas power plants went offline last week | The Texas Tribune. 

What a Greg Abbott mess.

This is a headline on the HoustonChronicle.com:

Two new retail developments are doubling down on Houston’s hippest neighborhood 

Care to guess where is H-Town’s hippest neighborhood? See more from the Chron:

With millennial-approved color palettes and branding, experiential pop-ups and a model that entices locals to hang out in an Instagrammable setting, lifestyle retailers are doubling down on the hipness that is the Heights. 

Boasting indie-cool boutiques and restaurants mixed with forthcoming national retailers, including Ray-Ban, M-K-T (pronounced as three letters) is a new development comprising five repurposed, single-story buildings and green spaces conceived by Austin-based Michael Hsu’s Office of Architecture. 

Situated on the Heights Hike and Bike Trail, the 12-acre site has office, retail and dining space. The first retailers opened in late 2020, with ongoing tenant announcements and grand-opening events. 

I’m hip for sure.

That’s ten in a row. Our last loss was back on Saturday, June 12 when we lost to the Twins in Minneapolis.  Our current win streak includes wins like 14-3, 10-2, 8-2, 10-2 and 13-0. That’s downright ugly. 

We are in Detroit for four. 

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