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XTO Energy moving 1,600 employees to The Woodlands, selling six of seven buildings.

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#51 JBB

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 03:39 PM

I think they're currently leasing space in Burnett Plaza.

#52 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 05:43 PM

I'm hoping all of the XTO buildings will remain offices after they are sold. We need more office space downtown, not less.


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#53 JBB

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 06:01 PM

Not that we haven't already seen this, but the S-T did a nice catalog of the XTO buildings:

 

http://www.star-tele...e157050249.html

 

And the editorial board says "calm down":

 

http://www.star-telegram.com/opinion/editorials/article157044479.html 



#54 Austin55

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 06:25 PM

Sandra Baker article on the potential future of the buildings. 

 

http://www.star-tele...e156960979.html

 

Three big takeaways

 

-She mentions The T sale was already in the works before the planned move.

 

-The Chamber is already working with two companies looking at a move to downtown

 

-Andy Taft thinks some could go residential or hotel.



#55 Jeriat

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 06:42 PM

http://www.star-tele...e156960979.html
The Swift building is under contract with an undisclosed buyer and the Grove St. building is under contract with The T. The T is planning to move their headquarters to that building.


Wow... that was EXACTLY what I wanted for that building.

7fwPZnE.png

 

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#56 renamerusk

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 06:53 PM

And the editorial board says "calm down"...

 

 I have not read the FWST Editorial, but if it points out that 

 

(1) we have seven beautifully restored buildings;

(2) we have a 800 car parking garage which may make it easier for future projects to get underway;

 

 then it is correct in suggesting that we "calm down".



#57 John T Roberts

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 07:43 PM

We will probably look back at the work that Bob Simpson did in restoring the downtown buildings and realize that not only was it a smart move at the time, but it was a smart move for Fort Worth's future.



#58 ramjet

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 09:01 PM

Agree.  Really, an opportunity.  They are leaving behind some terrific restored architecture.  Natural gas???  Fort Worth will do just fine.



#59 johnfwd

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 07:04 AM

Sandra Baker article on the potential future of the buildings. 

 

http://www.star-tele...e156960979.html

 

Three big takeaways

 

-She mentions The T sale was already in the works before the planned move.

 

-The Chamber is already working with two companies looking at a move to downtown

 

-Andy Taft thinks some could go residential or hotel.

If some of the buildings go residential or hotel, as Mr. Taft suggests, I don't believe that should halt plans by Hilton or Marriott to build new hotels downtown.  They own these lots and would have to make a serious cost-benefit calculation as to whether to sell their properties (or hold them undeveloped) and buy any of the available buildings up for sale.  Such decisions are not made hastily just because other properties are suddenly up for sale.  I don't think we're going to see a sort of "musical chairs" with properties downtown.  And, from what I've read, the demand for new hotel rooms downtown is still pretty strong.



#60 Doohickie

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 08:05 AM

 

That's not what I read from that.  It isn't exactly alarmist, but neither is it reassuring.


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#61 JBB

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 09:28 AM

I was paraphrasing the headline for the editorial that was literally "Don’t panic about XTO’s move to Houston".

#62 Austin55

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Posted 21 June 2017 - 03:14 PM

This article hurts. I think just about everyone knows of the Parade of llights sponserships and the habitat for humanity builds. but XTO has been doing a lot more for our community than I've realized.

 

http://www.star-tele...e157433789.html



#63 John T Roberts

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Posted 21 June 2017 - 09:02 PM

JBB, I thought the article of the catalog of XTO Buildings that the Star-Telegram did was very nice.  Even though I knew how tall and when they were built, I had not looked up their size.  That is good information.

 

Austin55, I had no idea that the company did so much for Fort Worth charities.  They will surely be missed.  I agree with you in that their leaving town will hurt us all.



#64 renamerusk

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Posted 22 June 2017 - 10:40 AM

.... I agree with you in that their [XTO] leaving town will hurt us all.

 

 Will XTO not have any ties to Fort Worth?

 

 I believe that there are  another company  that can and will step in as the sponsor of the "Parade of Lights" if the need arises.

 

One that comes to my mind is Alcon; another is AZZ. 

 

https://www.forbes.com/companies/azz/



#65 tcecil

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Posted 22 June 2017 - 11:12 AM

JBB, I thought the article of the catalog of XTO Buildings that the Star-Telegram did was very nice.  Even though I knew how tall and when they were built, I had not looked up their size.  That is good information.

 

Austin55, I had no idea that the company did so much for Fort Worth charities.  They will surely be missed.  I agree with you in that their leaving town will hurt us all.

 

One of the other challenges to local non-profits that people don't always consider is that when a company moves its executives away from one city, there can be a significant loss from having those executives on a non-profit's Board of Trustees/Directors.  This was seen as a major challenge in St. Louis while I was up there.  Aside from their financial giving potential, it's impressive how much difference having strong leadership on your Board can help a non-profit, whether it's in helping to make connections, helping to guide strategy, helping to coach a CEO/marketing/other development types within the organization.  Anyway, Fort Worth is in no way suffering from the same challenges that St. Louis was, but it's just something else to keep in mind when you think about the involvement that a major corporation has in the community.

 

Change almost always means opportunity.  The challenge is in finding and exploiting it.



#66 Doohickie

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Posted 22 June 2017 - 01:01 PM

 

.... I agree with you in that their [XTO] leaving town will hurt us all.

 

 Will XTO not have any ties to Fort Worth?

 

About 350 people will remain.


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#67 John T Roberts

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 12:53 PM

Below is a link to the Fort Worth Business Press' story on filling the vacant office space left behind by XTO Energy.

 

http://www.fortworth...98780b560a.html



#68 austlar1

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 01:09 PM

Seems to me the biggest associated with the loss of XTO HQ is the fact that 1,600 locals earning presumably decent incomes and working in downtown Fort Worth will soon be gone. There will probably be additional job losses downtown owing to a reduced need for allied business services. This is could have a negative impact on the downtown real estate market for condos and town homes. Hotel business (surely XTO attracted considerable business travel to Fort Worth) is likely to take a hit. The XTO office buildings might prove to be a difficult sell to new business tenants. I know they have been modernized, but I suspect that they are still rather eccentric by modern office building standards. Hotel and condo conversion might be just the ticket for some of the buildings, but first there has to be a demand for the product. Downtown Fort Worth needs to find a way to become a more desirable place for corporate tenants both large and small. The Dallas side of the metroplex has become so sprawled out and developed with major corporate relocations. It seems to me that it is time for downtown Fort Worth to make a sustained effort to tap into that momentum. I sincerely hope that the Fort Worth plutocracy will endorse those efforts and use their considerable influence to help attract new business relocations (corporate HQ or regional HQ) to downtown Fort Worth. Tourism is all well and good, but it does not provide for lots of high paying jobs that can help sustain the development of new housing and office development in downtown.



#69 Urbndwlr

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 05:14 PM

Austlar1, good points. 

As one person said at a recent real estate presentation, Fort Worth missed out on some companies coming in a few years ago because it didn't have large blocks of space available but it does now.  The XTO blocks of space will not be good candidates for large office uses though.  They were an anomaly of a large company willing to be spread out across several small footprint office buildings.   Companies WILL agree to be in multiple buildings in urban environments (such as Amazon in Seattle) but those buildings will have to have larger floors (20,000 SF and up typically), as is the case with the buildings built from 1980 and later in Downtown Fort Worth. 

 

For smaller companies looking to move to Fort Worth there are many good options and that is likely the real opportunity here.  Those won't make headlines but wind up driving local economies. 



#70 gdvanc

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 04:10 PM

Once again I find myself wishing I had won a couple of those larger PowerBall drawings.

 

The reality is that constant pressure to reduce costs combined with an ever-shrinking reliance on physical proximity to business services (e.g., accounting and legal firms), among other things, will continue to push many companies away from the city core. This has been the trend for a while and doesn't seem likely to change in the near future.

 

Certainly there are still companies moving to - or expanding in - downtowns across the country. What makes them want to do so? What makes them willing to pay generally higher property costs to be downtown? Obviously there are a number of reasons; how is Fort Worth positioned in any of them?

 

And really, beyond this, what is our goal for downtown? What specific value did those thousands of XTO jobs represent? The better we can define that, the better we can identify other ways to provide that value should we find it difficult to bring in new jobs.

 

Here's hoping Simpson's MorningStar Partners will soon be ready to expand.



#71 renamerusk

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 05:19 PM

.....The reality is............


..... how is Fort Worth positioned in any of them?

 

....The better we can define that, the better we can identify other ways to provide that value should we find it difficult to bring in new jobs.

 

Here's hoping Simpson's MorningStar Partners will soon be ready to expand.

 

[RE: #70]

 

 Spot On! :) :) :)



#72 John T Roberts

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 12:44 PM

Here is an article on "How Downtown Fort Worth's Office Oversupply Could Help It Lure Big Tenants" from Bisnow.

 

https://www.bisnow.c...s-fort-worth-re



#73 renamerusk

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 01:17 PM

The Bisnow article contains quotes that I think speak to the possible, probable and changeable future of the CBD/Downtown.

 

Bisnow - The future of XTO's offices is undecided.  Many say the buildings may not remain single-user office space --or office space at all.

 

  "There's been no shortage of suitors [for the XTO buildings]", Andy Taft, President - Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. said. "We've had a few calls from people who want to own property Downtown, most have been residential and hospitality users -- but a few office users".

 

Bisnow - If the offices were repurposed to hotels and residential, the space could become an appealing amenity to office users.

 

I agree with both of their assessments; they provide a much needed source of optimism that Downtown as a Residential/Entertainment/Hospitality Center is being seriously considered.  More to the point, they are signals that Downtown has to and will change into something other than primarily being an "Office" center.

 

 

BTW, Downtown is describe as a "submarket".  Isn't shedding that classification the first thing that it needs to do if it wants to attract outside investment? For example, try to get an exact number of tourists; its not readily available because the number is an aggregate for North Texas.



#74 johnfwd

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 05:53 AM

We've probably exhausted discussion about XTO leaving and taking 1,600 employees with them.   Whether or not Fort Worth will actually be a city population of fewer than the 1,600 persons and their households is an arguable point.  What XTO taketh, Lockheed Martin giveth, if you'll excuse a twisting of the Biblical  proverb.  I post this link to the ST article by Sandra Baker here just to point out what I posted earlier here or in another thread--that the ebb and flow of commercial business opportunities is not a zero-sum game.

 

http://www.star-tele...62156673.html#0



#75 Doohickie

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 07:05 AM

1800 workers, many of them for the assembly line (per the article).  It also says they extended 600 offers the day of the job fair.


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#76 renamerusk

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 10:46 AM

.....XTO leaving and taking 1,600 employees with them....What XTO taketh, Lockheed Martin.....that the ebb and flow of commercial business opportunities is not a zero-sum game.

 

 

 Great for those who are able to find a job.

 

In the overall scheme, L-M hiring is mute in the discussion because an assembly line in West Fort Worth should not be included in the ebb and flow equation of jobs Downtown.



#77 Doohickie

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 10:50 AM

No, but they will contribute to the local economy.  Some might even move downtown.


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#78 renamerusk

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 12:24 PM

Yes, this happening will be a contribution. Those from outside of the County will contribute a net positive flow into the local economy; and others who already live here will not take away from the local economy as does the XTO departure.

 

Take for example, the applicant who now lives in McKinney, Texas will have a daily one-way trip of 66miles between home and L-H; and that might lead him to consider leasing an apartment in Downtown to improve his commute.

.



#79 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 02:05 PM

The Petroleum Building, 600 Houston Street Mall, and the vacant lot where the Pour House once stood, totaling one full city block will be the first XTO property marketed for sale.  Below is a link to a Business Press article on the marketing of the block.

 

http://www.fortworth...a330f33f51.html



#80 Austin55

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 02:52 PM

Retail returning to the double level street mall could be nice, as would new construction on the surface lot.

#81 Jeriat

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 03:45 PM

Retail returning to the double level street mall could be nice, as would new construction on the surface lot.

 

Just going to throw some things out there. My thoughts/suggestions on what to bring to the "mall" :


- a small "Live House"

lol-live-house.jpg

 

- French Restaurant (and specifically French, since we don't have that in downtown)

 

Fiji+03.jpg

 

- small Aquarium/Restaurant

dqa.jpg

 

- Sports bar (which may fit well with that stretch on Houston)

4.jpg

 

- Dave & Busters, if there's enough room for it...

1w7WVW.St.117.jpeg


7fwPZnE.png

 

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#82 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 07:00 PM

When the building had retail on the lower two levels, there was a Schlotzsky's Deli and a large soup/salad/sandwich place called Grand Central Station. 

 

Personally, I don't think those two levels are large enough for a Dave and Buster's. 



#83 JBB

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 08:06 PM

Dave and Buster's in Euless is 40k square feet with a huge dining room and sports bar and private event space.  The retail mall space is 31k, so it would be a really tight fit.  The Euless location is 1 story, so factor in space for elevators and stairs and that cuts it down more.



#84 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 08:54 PM

Not only is the space tight in area, but because of the parking ramps, there are some spaces within those retail levels that have ridiculously low structure heights.  I remember that from using the restrooms back in the day when Schlotzsky's and Grand Central Station occupied the retail spaces.  The building codes have changed since that garage was built in the 1970's so I'm not sure if some of those low structured spaces would now be allowed to be usable space.  The office areas that are there now have been renovated under the newer codes, and since I haven't been in there since the office conversion, I really can't say how those spaces are used now.  They may not even be used at all, or my recollection of a low structure height may be lower than it actually is.  Those areas could meet the current code.  Also, would a tenant like Dave and Buster's want spaces with low ceiling heights?  I doubt it. 

 

One other note, years ago, I did a study for renovating a prominent downtown space for a well known client to convert that space into a Dave and Buster's.  That space was considerably larger, and it actually had more than two levels.



#85 JBB

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 09:50 PM

It seems like I remember hearing that before.  Surely the statute of limitations has expired and you could tell us which space.



#86 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 10:08 PM

You will have to pardon my forgetfulness.  However, I would prefer to keep client's information confidential. 



#87 Jeriat

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 10:09 PM

I don't remember what was there before it was all office space (is it all office space?), but I'd at least want to rebuild that front.


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#88 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 10:27 PM

The former retail levels at 600 Houston Street are all office space, except for the Sundry Mart convenience store on 6th Street.  The front looks just about like it did when it was retail space.  The only difference that I can remember is that the sign band has been replaced with storefront glazing.



#89 Austin55

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 02:27 PM

Here's the description of the Petroleum Block from it's listing,

 

 

The Petroleum Building is a 14-story, 93,824 square foot Class B office building last renovated by the Owner in 2006. The Executive Garage is a 12-story parking garage providing 534 spaces connected to The Petroleum Building by an enclosed skywalk. The Executive Garage also provides two levels of retail or office space, totaling 31,175 square feet, plus 23 spaces on the adjoining surface lot (corner of 5th Street and Throckmorton). The Properties have the strongest (dedicated) structured parking ratio for any existing office building in Downtown Fort Worth.

 
The Properties comprise one (1) City Block centrally located in Downtown Fort Worth, directly adjacent to the famous Sundance Square Business and Entertainment District. Together they present multiple value-add opportunities, including development of the corner surface lot, space repurposing, and the monetization of surplus parking capacity.

 

The parking surplus, developable land, and potential for retail all make this an exciting block to me, really curious where it will go.



#90 John T Roberts

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 03:12 PM

My prediction is that the building will be sold and redeveloped into something other than office space.  This might be a good hotel conversion, especially with the 1/4 block being vacant and either support, or another building (hotel or residential) could be built there.  I predict the 2 story office space in the Executive Garage will be converted back to retail.  If you landed a couple of good retail tenants, say one on each level, I don't think you would have any trouble leasing the rest of the retail space.



#91 Volare

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 07:44 PM

Gotta wonder how great the Woodlands relocation is looking right now.



#92 RD Milhollin

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 09:37 PM

Would you believe "The Wetlands"...



#93 Jeriat

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 10:40 PM

Gotta wonder how great the Woodlands relocation is looking right now.

 

We had a tornado plow straight through downtown where all their buildings are. 

Just sayin', it's not like they would be 100% safe here, either. 


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#94 Volare

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 06:58 AM

 

Gotta wonder how great the Woodlands relocation is looking right now.

 

We had a tornado plow straight through downtown where all their buildings are. 

Just sayin', it's not like they would be 100% safe here, either. 

 

 

Tornadoes happen everywhere around Texas and the Midwest.

 

Houston, by design (or lack thereof) is always going to be subject to horrendous flooding, and it's only going to get worse as they continue to pave wetlands and prairies. They have now had four 500 year floods in the past 20 years.

 

https://www.woodland...fm?nppage=59752



#95 Jeriat

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 08:14 AM

Regardless of how the city is built, disasters can and will happen, so I don't look at that as a flaw on the part of the company.

Besides, they got purchased by a higher company. Not sure they had much say so in where the majority of the offices would be. It sucks, but that's business. 


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#96 Doohickie

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 10:01 AM

Regardless of how the city is built, disasters can and will happen

 

But the WAY in which cities are built can minimize the effects of expected weather events.

 

After flooding of the Trinity in the 1940s, the Trinity was re-banked in Fort Worth with levees and reservoirs to protect the city.  Houston needs to recognize that their vulnerability and work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to accommodate future storms.


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#97 Jeriat

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 10:22 AM

 

Regardless of how the city is built, disasters can and will happen

 

But the WAY in which cities are built can minimize the effects of expected weather events.

 

After flooding of the Trinity in the 1940s, the Trinity was re-banked in Fort Worth with levees and reservoirs to protect the city.  Houston needs to recognize that their vulnerability and work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to accommodate future storms.

 

 

Fair enough. But still, mostly out of XTO's control as far as the move goes. 


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#98 rriojas71

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 11:29 AM

Also, another big negative about the Houston Area and natural disasters is that most of our Rivers flow towards the Houston area. So if we get major flooding here at times that can cause Houston to get second-hand effects from that. Say for instance it stops raining there tomorrow and we started getting a few days of rain and flooding it will inevitably add to Houston' woes.

#99 Now in Denton

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 01:17 PM

Gotta wonder how great the Woodlands relocation is looking right now.

 

I agree. No place is beyond some sort of disaster. Exxon shut down its refineries. So why put another part of its business vulnerable to floodings . Houston area flooding is more common by storms than a downtown Fort Worth tornado. If Exxon ever wanted to leave the HQ in Plano. I highly doubt they would move to Houston.



#100 JBB

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 01:40 PM

Exxon's HQ is in Irving.





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