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1947_11_29--022-Houston

• ,• b WI ht +ith so a ••O .11 II Tnpn pir n --r•r•tprp"---:, • • TIN' "Houston is still a businessman's town." Its sky line is constantly growing; new skyscrapers are being built and old ones are having stories added. Nellies cringe before the sneers of visiting lecturers and journalists who view the city's culture with what one-time Houstonian 0. Henry would have called "frappeed contumely." Other Houstonians simply realize that it is a little too early to reap the full cultural by-product of this genuinely real and tumultuous municipal adventure. Nevertheless, Houston is not a boom town, unless a boom is something that can last 100 years. Texans have been flocking into, and investing their money in, Houston for a century—a century in which, as it happens, Texans have changed from desperate, impecunious fugitives from the law or outrageous fortune into a rich and potent people. Yet the money these Texans are still betting on Houston becomes a trifle in comparison to the floods of Yankee money pouring in these days from the financial houses and industrial combines of New York and Boston. Where other Texas cities watch each other jealously, snort and caper to keep a jump ahead of their rivals, Houston doesn't bother. Being in a considerably more major league, it is glad when the others do well. The faster they grow, the more California dried and canned fruits, Baltimore hats and umbrellas, Boston machinery and New Yorkmade apparel and gadgets will pass through Houston's port. There are very few American cities in which you can find a skyscraper or a top-notch luxury hotel under construction today. In Houston not only are new skyscrapers being built from the ground up, but old ones are having stories added by the dozen. Glenn McCarthy, one of the younger of Houston's petroleum potentates, is building an $18,000,000 luxury hotel and community center out on South Main. His hotel manager worked his way up through the managership of the Waldorf. Foley Brothers' brand spanking new $10,000,000 department store covers a block for many stories up and delivers customers' parcels to their cars in its equally new half-block-square garage. In another garage this spring, Judge James Elkins' City National Bank did business as usual until such time as its new 24- story banking building could be completed. One PHOTOGRAPHY BY JACK MANNING man, Frank W. Sharp, is building forty million dollars' worth of houses. Ship-channel frontage twenty miles from town is going at $4000 an acre, and downtown lots at $2000 per front inch. Industrial expansion along the livelier portions of Houston's ship channel runs to $100,000,000 per front mile. Incidentally, the vast, mushrooming development along the ship channel is the No. 1 sight in Houston, and the gaga visitor may, at the end of his tour, see the No. 2 sight, the San Jacinto Monument, which is fifteen feet higher than the Washington Monument, and refresh himself with delicious sea food at the famous San Jacinto Inn. Houston's over-all building program is now fluctuating somewhere in the no man's land between $500,000,000 and $1,000,000,000. Nobody in Houston knows the exact figure. If anyone did, that figure would almost certainly be out of date after a few hours, since it undergoes substantial increases almost every day. Some $170,000,000 will go for public works, and that won't scratch the surface. When that (Continued on Page 55)


1947_11_29--022-Houston
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