East End Unveils New Vision for the Future

It's one of Houston's oldest and most historic neighborhoods, but has long been neglected as other parts of the city have been redeveloped and revitalized. As Houston Public Radio's Jack Williams reports, an ambitious new vision for the future of the East End could change that.

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Planners like Greater East End Management District Chairman Sonny Flores say they consider the area to the east of downtown an untapped resource that has been ignored for too long.

"Once we show people what we have and the convenience of the downtown area and the convenience of getting around this town, they'll come. We are the new Heights. We are a place whose time has come. That's what we are. Our time has come, we're in the right place, we've just been forgotten."

Flores and others have unveiled a road map of sorts for the next decade in the East End, a plan that includes seven strategic goals, such as more economic development, better schools and an improved image. This is District president Mary Margaret Hansen.

"We experienced a great decline in the 70's and 80's, but we are springing back and we really believe that with a little work and effort, we will become Houston's next great place."

The East End is home to 100,000 residents and 2500 businesses. Susan Rogers is director of the University of Houston's Community Design Resource Center at the Hines School of Architecture and has helped planners develop goals for the future, even as the East End changes.

"Stakeholders wanted to come together and actually work toward shaping that change so that the East End could be even a greater place than it is now. It was a question of balance. How do you balance kind of the East End as it is today with the new growth that is coming to the East End as it will come to all of Houston's communties."

You can find out more about the East End's strategic vision on our website, KUHF.org.

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