Midtown (Houston)

Midtown, Houston, Texas

Midtown is a district southwest of Downtown Houston, bordered by Neartown and U.S. Highway 59.

History

Midtown was the second residential neighborhood created in Houston, following the settling of Allen's Landing. Around 1906 Midtown was divided between the Third Ward and Fourth Ward. This suburb experienced explosive growth through the 1940s as the Humble Oil and Refining Company prospered, but began declining in the 1980s. Midtown was the only district in Texas to experience negative growth from 1980 to 1990.

Midtown remains home to Little Saigon, a neighborhood of Vietnamese and Vietnamese Americans, which pioneered the redevelopment of Midtown Houston in the 1970s. During the 1980s, Travis and Milam Streets were a mirror image of Saigon in the 1970s. Higher rents and street construction have reduced the number of Vietnamese American businesses, many of which have relocated to the outer Houston Chinatown in the Bellaire Boulevard corridor west of Sharpstown.

Since the late 1990s the Midtown neighborhood has experienced retail, commercial and residential growth under the direction of the Midtown Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (TIRZ). "Midtown" is a fairly recent moniker; it first appeared around the time the TIRZ appeared.

Welcoming the increased infrastructure and public works services to a community which had been overlooked, some long-time Midtown residents have issues with the redevelopment. Because the price of land is skyrocketing, these people are concerned they are being pushed out of their homes. They note that they cannot afford the luxury apartment and townhomes being built and redevelopment also pushes out local independent merchants in favor of 'big name' corporate entities who are being accused of gentrification. Community Development Corporations in and around Midtown want to encourage development while promoting culturally sensitive and responsive models.

Demographics

According to the 2000 Census, the Super Neighborhood #62 Midtown (which mostly corresponds to the boundaries of the Midtown District) contained a total of 5,311 residents. The racial makeup of the area was 45% (2,439 people) White, 18% (949 people) Black or African American, 6% (320 people) Asian, less than 1% (8 people) Native American, less than 1% (35 people) from other races, 1% (70 people) from two or more races and 28% (1,490 people) of the population were Hispanic or Latino The super neighborhood contained a total of 4,559 people above the age of 18. The super neighborhood contained a total of 3,219 people who are male and 2,092 people who are female. 18 people are in nursing homes. Nobody is in a correctional institution, a college dormitory, or a military quarter. There were 2,326 households, with a population of 4,142 in those households. The average household size is 1.78 people.

Some parts of Midtown are within Super Neighborhood #66 Binz.

Transportation

Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Texas is the area transit authority. The METRORail Red Line runs directly through Midtown along Main Street. Three stops (Wheeler, Ensemble/HCC, and McGowen) are located in Midtown. Bus routes 1, 8, 25, 60, 65, and 182 stop at Wheeler Station. Routes stopping at the Downtown Transit Center, adjacent to Midtown and located in Downtown, include 11, 15, 24, 30, 35, 52, 60, 70, and 77. Other routes serving Midtown include 3, 5, 33, 42, 44, 53, 56, 82, 85, 102, 108, 131, 261, 262, 265, 269, 274, and 283.

Houston's intercity bus station (which is served by Greyhound Lines and several bus lines that serve Mexico and Central America) is located in Midtown.

Government and infrastructure

Houston Fire Department Station 7 is located in Midtown

The Houston Police Department's South Central Patrol Division , headquartered at 2022 St. Emanuel., serves the neighborhood.

Two Houston City Council districts, D and I cover portions of Midtown. As of 2008 Wanda Adams and James G. Rodriguez, respectively, represent the two districts.

Midtown is in Texas's 18th congressional district. As of 2008 its representative is Sheila Jackson Lee.

Education

Colleges and universities

Houston Community College System's main campus is located in Midtown.

Midtown is close to the University of Houston ("UH"), University of Houston–Downtown ("UHD"), Texas Southern University, Rice University, and University of St. Thomas.

Primary and secondary education

Public schools

Midtown is served by Houston Independent School District.

One school, J. Will Jones Elementary School, is located in Midtown. Pupils in Midtown who attend their neighborhood schools attend either J. Will Jones, MacGregor Elementary School (in the Hermann Park area), or Gregory-Lincoln Education Center (in the Fourth Ward) for primary school.

All pupils in Midtown who are north of U.S. Route 59 (almost all of Midtown) are zoned to Gregory-Lincoln Education Center for middle school. A small portion of the Midtown district south of U.S. Route 59 (which is in Super Neighborhood #66 Binz instead of Super Neighborhood #62 Midtown) is zoned to Ryan Middle School; the portion contains one multi-family residence.

Almost all of Midtown is zoned to Lamar High School (in Upper Kirby), while a small northwest section of Midtown is zoned to Reagan High School (in the Houston Heights).

An HISD alternative secondary school, Houston International Studies High School, is located in the HCCS Central campus.

The Contemporary Learning Center, an alternative public school, is near Midtown.

A charter school called Houston CAN! Academy is also located in Midtown.

Gallery of public schools
Public schools formerly located in Midtown
A former public high school, San Jacinto High School, is the current home of the Central Campus of the Houston Community College System. San Jacinto opened in 1926. The school gained a technical program in 1962 and lost its neighborhood program in 1971. High School for the Performing and Visual Arts was located on the San Jacinto campus from 1971 to 1981. In 1985 San Jacinto closed for good when its technical program ended.

Private schools

Midtown is close to several private schools, including Incarnate Word Academy, an all-girls high school in Downtown, and Annunciation Orthodox School, a K-8 Orthodox school located in Neartown.
Private schools formerly located in Midtown
The Kinkaid School, a private school, was located in the house of Margaret Kinkaid what is now Midtown from its founding in 1906 to the time when the school moved to a campus in Montrose. In 1957, the school moved to the city of Piney Point Village, where it resides as of 2006

Saint Agnes Academy, a private school, was located in what is now Midtown from its founding in 1906 to 1963. The school moved to the Sharpstown neighborhood in 1963, where it resides as of 2006

Public libraries

The community is close to the Houston Public Library Central Library in Downtown.

Parks

Midtown Park is located at the intersection of Bagby and Gray. The Midtown Management District and several businesses provided funding for the park. Elizabeth Baldwin Park is located at 1701 Elgin.

Community information

The closest YMCA is the Downtown YMCA.

Gallery

References

See also

External links

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