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About Uptown

Vision for the Future

Uptown Houston flowers in bloomWhere You Can Have It All

With more than 28 million square feet of commercial office space and five million square feet of retail space combined with nearly 7,600 hotel rooms, more than 100 restaurants and a booming residential market, Uptown Houston is...Where You Can Have It All. As one of the world's leading urban districts, Uptown Houston is poised to become even greater than the prestigious blend of commercial and residential properties that it is today. Through a series of improvement initiatives, Uptown Houston is implementing a strategic vision which will ensure its continued success.

Cornerstones for the Future

The District's vision for the future has been focused on three major cornerstones – Accessibility, Identity and Community.

  • Accessibility – Uptown Houston must be easily accessible to and from any direction in the region. As importantly, travel within Uptown itself, whether by car, foot or by transit, must be convenient, safe and enjoyable.
  • Identity – Creating an unparalleled sense of place is a critical component of Uptown Houston's vision. The area's bold streetscape program of stainless steel arches, rings and light fixtures are paramount, and the vibrant, colorful landscaped medians accent the District's feel of a garden community. New open spaces will continue to be unveiled to create a greater sense of beauty and enliven the streets.
  • Community – The appeal of Uptown Houston, ultimately, will be measured by a sense of place that is defined by the many intangibles that collectively create its unique environment. Building a groundswell of community rooted in a successful blend of urban lifestyle components is the true benchmark of the District's vision.

enjoying Uptown out of doorsGuiding Principles for Success

In Uptown Houston, an established set of guiding principles acts as a roadmap from which both the public and private sector can build for the future. Uptown Houston's guiding principles include:

  • Mobility – Mobility improvements are the catalyst to make Uptown Houston more easily accessible and increasingly economically viable in the coming decades. Four components help realize the vision: regional improvements, local improvements, pedestrian mobility and new transit alternatives.
  • Mixed Use – The seamless, elegant combination of offices, homes, stores, hotels, restaurants and green spaces is what distinguishes Uptown Houston. The rich diversity of current land use, together with new and enriched community spaces and new development projects, create unmatched value, propelling the District forward.
  • Garden District – With transit options and more pedestrian friendly alternatives, the transformation of a landscaped, open environment into a recognized garden district is essential. Additional plantings provide definition and scale to District streets. New green spaces and parks enhance the area's garden district appeal and bring community to Uptown.
  • Vivid Streetscapes – The District works closely with private and public entities to encourage street-side interaction that reflects an engaging sense of urban style. The essence of the Uptown experience is conveyed through architectural details, public art and festive, dramatic lighting that celebrate Uptown at every turn, as a Destination of Choice.

Freeway at night in Uptown HoustonMobility is Key

Enhanced mobility is key to the success of Uptown Houston's vision. Several improvement projects have fundamentally changed the face of Uptown and were the first critical step to making the dream a reality.

Aggressive regional improvement projects that are in progress or have been completed include improvements to the US 59 Southwest Freeway, IH-10 Katy Freeway, the Grand Parkway, Fort Bend Parkway and the proposed Northwest Tollroad. The reconstruction of the West Loop and the new Westpark Tollway have had a significant positive impact on Uptown Houston. The West Loop with new entrances and exits provides commuters with "hot links" that give direct access into and out of Uptown. The new Westpark Tollway provides southwest Houston communities a quick and convenient gateway into Uptown.

uptown renderingThe Uptown Houston District and its Tax Increment Financing District have embarked on a $235 million local street improvement program. Its focus is to:

  • Improve existing streets;
  • Create a secondary street network;
  • Improve intersections, and;
  • Create a pedestrian network.

Complemented by the addition of open, green spaces and lively, active streetscapes, these improvements not only ease congestion and increase traffic flow, but enliven the district and create an unparalleled sense of place.

For example, Post Oak Boulevard will be transformed. Plans will accommodate new mixed-use development that incorporates pedestrian and street activity, as well as a transit corridor that links Uptown to regional transit systems and will offer improved intra-district transit options. A necklace of green spaces along this grand community, culminating at a pedestrian gateway with the area's famed Waterwall, will function as calming hideaways from surrounding commercial activity.

Plans also call for a significant pedestrian improvement program, currently underway, which widens sidewalks and adds pedestrian lighting and landscaping to all streets in Uptown.

One major mobility improvement project includes San Felipe. Widened to six lanes, traffic flows much smoother on this major thoroughfare. It has also been transformed into an oak-lined parkway with pedestrian walkways and additional green spaces.

uptown at nightOther neighborhood arteries feeding into major thoroughfares are being integrated into the mixed-use environment. Finally, a network of secondary streets, like the new Post Oak Lane and Skylark, is being created to ease congestion, create value and to provide more active streetscapes.

A Reflection of What is Best

Uptown Houston is a reflection of what is best in the city. The improvements currently underway will secure its pre-eminence as the standard bearer for world-class urban districts for years to come.