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Is Houston the New "It" City? – Condé Nast Traveler

Condé Nast Traveler recently published an article asking a simple question: Is Houston the new “it” city?

We may be slightly biased in our love for the Bayou City, but we see great things happening in Houston, especially right here in the East End. Between our thriving art scene, the newly designated cultural district, the home of our beloved Houston Dynamo, and some of the best restaurants in the city, the East End offers something for everyone.

[quote]What is most compelling to those of us who have stuck around through the booms and busts is the new emphasis on “quality of life” by local government and businesses. In the old days, that term meant you rolled up the car windows and turned on the AC when the air smelled too much like toxic petrochemicals. Now, community leaders-realizing that a younger generation of corporate honchos and their employees actually want to live someplace… nice-have applied their passion for innovation to making Houston a far more verdant and pleasant place to live and visit. Thanks to public and private partnerships, a lively downtown park called Discovery Green has replaced a desolate sea of asphalt parking lots, and Houston’s most urban park, Hermann, is receiving a major face-lift. Last year the Chicago firm of Hoerr Schaudt, known for the beautification of Michigan Avenue, started working with the local firm White Oak Studio on the McGovern Centennial Gardens, which will have eight acres of gardens and a pavilion designed by Peter Bohlin (better known as the architect of the Apple store on New York City’s Fifth Avenue). And $58 million has gone toward the revivification of Buffalo Bayou, turning a historic but weedy bog into a semitropical paradise, with a skateboard park, a dog run, hiking and biking trails, a canoe dock, and even a lake-not to mention a sculpture by Henry Moore and a series of elegant kneeling figures by the Catalonian artist Jaume Plensa.[/quote]

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East End Improvement Corporation (EEIC) and Wells Fargo unveiled the first of seven BCycle “Art Stations” as part of a community program to connect residents and visitors to public art and businesses in East End Houston. The unveiling ceremony included the donation of 36 bicycles and helmets to East End students in coordination with local non-profit Wellness On Wheels (WOW). 
longest-serving urban farms, Finca Tres Robles, is getting ready for some big changes in the year ahead. Umbrella organization Small Places is transitioning to a 501(c)(3) to help revamp the farm and increase its impact in serving the East End community. In the months ahead, Finca Tres Robles will be celebrating 7.5 years of work in the East End as it pauses field operations at the end of 2021 to prepare for its next chapter.

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