Promoting Infill Development for a Denser Houston

An advocacy group is calling for ‘sustainable, vertical’ mixed-use urbanism in the famously sprawling city.

1 minute read

March 19, 2024, 8:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Green lawn and walkway in downtonw Houston park with skyline in background.

SeanPavonePhoto / Adobe Stock

The Texas chapter of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) is calling for increased density in Houston after a survey revealed that roughly 60 percent of respondents want the opportunity to live in a mixed-use development, favoring them over single-family homes.

Urban Edge’s John Brannen spoke with CTBUH’s leader, Mide Akinsade. According to Akinsade, “As part of city formation, the automobile has had the most impact in terms of urban sprawl. Unfortunately, it’s not sustainable because we’re creating all these impervious surfaces of roads. We have so many highways and the city is so vast.”

Akinsade says that the group is looking for “sustainable, vertical urbanism.” While the vertical part exists in Houston, the city still has little diversity in land use, forcing residents to travel farther to meet different needs. “It’s that kind of attitude and overlaying it with sustainability. When you’re walking you want to walk in shaded streets. You want to have pocket parks. That’s what is at the root of what I’m trying to bring to Houston.” Akinsade also points to the city’s many bayou waterfronts as an underdeveloped asset. “Those should be the city’s playground,” Akinsade said, adding, “I understand the ebb and flow of the bayou and the amount of capital that might need to be invested.”

Monday, March 11, 2024 in Urban Edge

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