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Bravo GDN!!! Galveston Daily News Opinion article written by: Leonard Woolsey

 

City needs to make it safer for cyclists on isle

Galveston Island needs to figure out how to make itself a safer place for bicyclists.

One does not need to drive too far to see cyclists riding across a parking lot or in and out of traffic along the seawall. There is something undeniable about coming to the beach and wanting to take in the scenery from two wheels.

But, unfortunately, Galveston is trailing the rest of the nation in welcoming cyclists. With its beautiful scenery, flat riding surfaces, and laid-back attitude, Galveston is just the type of place where cycling should be embraced.

Furthermore, anyone who has been along the seawall during high season knows it sure wouldn’t hurt to have a few people leave their cars at the hotel and ride around town on a bike.

Currently, we have pedestrians and cyclists sharing the same small spaces along the seawall or sidewalks. This is less than ideal — or safe — for either party.

Texas is home to some of the most progressive cycling communities in the nation — Austin is practically a poster child for figuring out how to create a place for those who’d like to cycle.

Considering how compact the footprint of our island is, wouldn’t it make sense to create an atmosphere where people — particularly the younger tech crowd — would feel welcome to commute?

We have all these great buildings in downtown Galveston that seem to attract the new kind of immigrant, the one who shows up with a laptop and bicycle and is not interested in commuting 50 miles to work each day.

Last month, Galveston Island was the unfortunate location for another cyclist’s death — an experienced cyclist along FM 3005.

Let’s get with the national trend, begin some research and make this island cyclist-friendly.

2013 – The Best Year in Residential Real Estate in Houston’s history!

January 10, 2014 by Leave a Comment

2013 was the best year in residential real estate in Houston’s history!  Single-family home sales experienced double-digit increases in sales, dollar volume closed, average sales price and a double-digit decline in active listings.  Home sales experienced a 17% increase in units sold in 2013!  Dollar volume closed for 2013 increased 30% from 2012.

The key driver of home sales is jobs.  According to the Greater Houston Partnerships’ 2014 forecast, the Houston metro area will create 69,800 jobs.  This prediction is slightly lower than jobs created in 2013 by about 10,000, but higher than Houston’s average of creating 61,900 net new jobs per year since 1993.

Here’s a glance at the trends for the month and year-end:

Houston Real Estate Information Services

December 2013 & December YTD 2013

  Metric

 December 2013

%change from 2012

 December YTD 2013

% change-2012

 # of sales

5,813

14%

73,232

17%

 Dollar volume

$1,540,543,821

26%

$18,204,820,815

30%

 Avg. sales price

$265,017

10%

$248,591

10%

 Med. sales price

$188,500

11%

$180,000

9%

 Pending sales

2,512

-2%

39,813

5%

 # active listings

16,148

-17%

18,602

-23%

The average days on the market to sell a home in Houston currently stands at 61 days. On average, the time it takes to sell a home in Houston is 22% less than it took this time last year.

Houston Home Sales by Price Class for 2013

What price ranges sold the most in Houston and how have they changed?  Every price class from $100,000 and up is selling more homes than last year. An even more spectacular record is that every price class from $110,000 and up experienced double-digit increases. The top five highest percentage increases YTD by price class are:

  1. $400,000 – $499,999 – up 48%
  2. $600,000 – $699,999 – up 45%
  3. $500,000 – $599,999 – up 42%
  4. $300,000 – $399,999 – up 41%
  5. $1,000,000 and more- up 40%

Below is a table of the Top Ten Selling Price Classes in Houston for the year 2013:

Top Ten Selling Price Classes –Houston Single-Family Real Estate

 2013

Price Class

Sales YTD

Active

Listings

Months of Inventory

1. $200,000-$249,999

8,486

1,588

2.2

2  $300,000-$399,999

7,601

1,885

3.0

3. $250,000-$299,999

6,463

1,335

2.5

4. $400,000-$499,999

3,900

1,174

3.6

5. $130,000-$139,999

3,534

598

2.0

6. $140,000-$149,999

3,378

574

2.0

7. $150,000-$159,999

3,362

550

2.0

8. $120,000-$129,999

3,283

632

2.3

9. $160,000-$169,999

3,263

583

2.1

10.$110,000-$119,999

3,056

533

2.1

The Months of Inventory table above tells the story of Houston real estate in a nutshell.  The Top Ten Selling Price Classes show that every price class is in a very strong sellers’ market with very little inventory per price class in comparison to buyer demand.  Months of Inventory [MOI] indicates how long it would take to sell a home in a specific price class given the current rate of sales and assuming no new inventory enters the market.  Anything below 6 months is considered a sellers’ market and anything above 6 months is considered a buyers’ market.  Houston is in a distinct sellers’ market in every price class listed above and in most other price classes that didn’t make the list.

2014 may not be the record breaking year that 2013 was in terms of real estate sales and dollar volume closed.  If 2014 homes sales do not surpass home sales found in 2013, it will come very close!

The Houston overall market is so large; it rarely reflects the same trends as a submarket area located within its boundaries.  Some areas are exceeding Houston’s over all growth in sales while others are lagging behind.  For a breakdown of activity by area with a map, CLICK HERE.

To see the hottest selling geographical areas in Houston, CLICK HERE.

To search for homes by price range and map, go to www.GaryGreene.com.

Data provided by the Houston Association of Realtors® Information Services™, and The Real Estate Center for Texas A&M and written by Toni Nelson, Director of Strategic Initiatives for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Gary Greene

‘Airborne’ Turns 20

By Maija Zummo · December 4th, 2013 · Culture

Cincinnatians love seeing this city on-screen — in Rain Man, The Ides of March, Traffic, Bar Rescue, etc. — and there’s no greater film that encapsulates the spirit of the Queen City (plus the awesomeness of early ’90s Rollerblading and turtlenecks) more than the seminal sporty romantic comedy Airborne.

Yes, Airborne: The local cult classic about a California surfer dude who begrudgingly moves in with his aunt and uncle in snowy Cincinnati only to find love, friendship and some sweet ass hills to Rollerblade down (Devil’s Backbone, anyone?). 

This year, the film turns 20, and two local Airborne aficionados — J Besl and Michael Sweeny — have set up a screening and ‘90s-inspired party to celebrate its platinum anniversary and elevate its place in Cincinnati’s pop culture legacy. 

“My love affair with Airborne started when I was 8 years old and my sister gave me a VHS copy of the movie,” Sweeny says. “I owned a pair of Rollerblades, so the whole extreme sports theme was appealing, but then I watched the movie and discovered it was set in Cincinnati and that just totally blew my gourd. Seeing it was one holy shit moment after another.”

“People think I’m being ironic when I admit my obsession,” he continues, “but the more times I watch the movie, the more sincerely I appreciate it.” 

And Sweeny and Besl want to share their cinematic appreciation with others through their public film screening.

In another “holy shit” moment, CityBeat recently tracked down Airborne star Shane McDermott aka Mitchell Goosen to talk to him (via email) about his time in Cincinnati, how sweet Mitchell Goosen actually was at Rollerblading and the lasting legacy of Airborne.

CityBeat: Tell me a little bit about your sports history. It’s obvious you actually Rollerblade. Were all of the Mitchell Goosen Rollerblading shots you? Or did you have a double do some of the tricks? What about the “Devil’s Backbone” race?

Shane McDermott: As a young kid, I would travel to auditions by Rollerblade, at times holding on to the New York City taxis for extra speed

Skating the streets of NYC taught me just enough to make Mitchell Goosen look authentic. We had an amazing team of professional skaters, led by Pat Parnell, who executed most of the stunts. I would like to mention that at the film’s completion, I received the coveted award of “most carnage” — most of the damage was done on Devil’s Backbone.

CB: Obviously, I have to ask about Seth Green and Jack Black. What was it like working with them? Was there any inkling they would go on to have the careers they have? 

SM: Working with Seth Green and Jack Black was an amazing experience. To this day, I think Seth is the funniest person on earth — talented, professional and a great guy all around. Due to the production schedule, I spent less time working with Jack Black, but his creativity and talent were apparent from the first day. 

CB: Had you ever been to Cincinnati before you started filming Airborne? What was your first impression of the city? 

SM: No, Airborne was my first visit. The day I arrived, I met a small production team at the airport to shoot the scene where Mitchell’s surfboard is taken off the plane. It was snowing and I was dressed in jeans, a light jacket and Vans standing on the airport runway next to a parked 737. My thoughts at the time: “This is so cool.”

CB: How well did you get to know the city while you were here? Do you remember a specific part of town or location that you really loved? 

SM: My experience of Cincinnati was unique because a film crew was always present due to the heavy shooting schedule. But, I would have to say Pompilios restaurant, the city skyline and the botanical gardens (Krohn Conservatory) stand out as favorites. 

CB: Can you describe one of your favorite memories of shooting and being in Cincinnati? 

SM: For the date night scene, the city organized to turn on all the lights of the downtown skyline. I remember being impressed the city of Cincinnati would do that for our film. Cincinnati is the best. 

CB: It’s been 20 years since the film came out. I read that you have no urge to get into acting again, but can you reflect on the film, its sort of status as a cult classic and your relationship to it now, two decades later? 

SM: Don’t believe everything you read. I love acting and look back positively on a successful career as a young actor. Of all the work that I’ve done, I am the most proud of Airborne. Its status is a testament to its quality. A great cast, an amazing production team and a little magic. It was an honor to participate, and if I ever had the opportunity to do it again, I would not think twice.

CB: Do you ever watch it?

SM: I watch Airborne with my nieces and nephew all the time.

CB: What do you think about the fact that there’s a screening and party locally to celebrate the film? 

SM: I think it is great and would like to commend Cincinnati on its good taste

 

CB:Is there anything else you want readers to know about the film, you or your experience in Cincinnati?

SM: I would just like to say thank you to Cincinnati; I have great memories of the City and its people. For those interested, follow me on instagram @sfmcdermott or my website-blog www.livinggalveston.com. Thank you

 

Read Article on CityBeat Website

http://citybeat.com/cincinnati/article-29185-airborne_turns_20.html

Diamond Beach Condos – Suite 307

 Just Listed

10327-San-Luis-307-KITCH-8-10327-San-Luis-307-DOOR10327-San-Luis-307-View-1

 

Stunning 3/Bed 2/Bath Beachfront Unit 307 at Diamond Beach Condos. St. Barths floor plan offers open living, dining, kitchen layout, with views of the Gulf just above tree tops. Large island with granite countertops, stainless appliances.

 

10327-San-Luis-307-LIVE-1-10327-San-Luis-307-View-210327-San-Luis-307-MBATH-1

 

 

Floor to ceiling windows look south over spacious balcony and diamonds beach famous pool. Master bath offers marble counters, double sink and whirlpool tub. Diamond Beach Amenities: 2 pools, hot tub, Concierge Desk, Kids Room, Ocean Cinema, Fitness Center.

 

10327-San-Luis-307THEPOOL-

 

 

DIAMOND BEACH CONDO
10327 SAN LUIS PASS RD – Suite 307
GALVESTON, TX
3/Bedroom 2/Bathroom
Price  – $375,000

 

 

 

St. Barths Floor Plan /Condo Amenities
2013-10-16-10327-SLP-floor-2013-10-16-10327-SLP-amenit

 

 

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