November 2017   Volume 43, Number 11      


Houston Rethinks Real Estate Development After Harvey

There has not been much debate over the years in Houston about how land use should be regulated. Developers in the nation’s fourth-largest city mostly built properties as they pleased. Now in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, which killed at least 50 people and caused approximately $180 billion in damage, people are starting to talk about whether Houston’s real estate development needs better oversight.

“If Houston does not change, it will not survive from an economic standpoint,” said Jim Blackburn, a professor of environmental law and the co-founder of Rice University’s Severe Storm Prediction, Education and Evacuation from Disaster Center. “This absolutely should change our policies and our trajectory.”

“Almost all the flooding in Houston is the result of poor development decisions,” said John Jacob, a professor of watershed science at Texas A&M University.

Instead of zoning, Stephen Costello, chief resilience officer for the city, believes the city needs to invest in a better system for moving rainwater out of town and into the bayous during heavy rains more quickly and efficiently. Developers and city officials counter that the scale of the storm was so massive that it is neither fair nor smart to draw conclusions from the storm yet.

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In this issue:

The 5 Hottest Hipster Real Estate Markets Across America

Could DACA Repeal Impact Real Estate?

Houston Rethinks Real Estate Development After Harvey

Hurricane Irma Not Likely to Affect Florida Real Estate Prices

NAR Forced MLS Membership Up for Review

REIT Investors Look to Alternative Property Sectors for Bigger Returns

Berkshire’s HomeServices of America Acquires Long & Foster

Harvey Victims Facing Temporary Housing Shortage in Houston

Malls Need New Business Model Says CBRE Report

The End of Facebook for Real Estate?


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