My Montrose: Steven Madden of the Montrose District Board
1. How long have you lived in Montrose?
I lived in Montrose from 1997, when I moved to Houston, until 2002 when I moved to the West University Area. I moved back to Montrose in 2010.
2. What is your favorite thing about the neighborhood?
The Montrose neighborhood embodies everything that is great about Houston. The diversity of the people, night life, and restaurants stand out as my favorites.
3. What inspired you to join the Montrose District’s Board of Directors?
Montrose is an important part of Houston’s personality and it’s important that we preserve it and prepare it for the future. I jumped at the chance to be a part of those discussions.
4. What do you hope to do through your membership on the board to improve the District?
I hope I’m able to use my experiences to assist the District in moving forward with the vision set out in the Ten Year Plan. If we want to ensure that Montrose remains the vibrant and thriving place it is today, we have to have a plan and we have to make sure that the plan is being followed. As I’ve said many times, Montrose is a significant part of what makes Houston such a great city. We have to recognize that and make sure we treat it appropriately.
5. Is there a particular District project past or present that you love?
I love the Bike Rack project. It’s great to see people getting around Montrose on their bikes. One of the great things about living in Montrose is that I can walk and bike to so many great places.
6. Do you have some places you always take out of town visitors to show off the District?
Everyone has now heard about our restaurants, so I usually provide a list of my favorites and let them choose. We have such a wide range of restaurants that meet everyone’s taste and atmosphere requirements. Right now, everyone wants to go to Underbelly (James Beard award) and Common Bond, Anvil has really made a name for itself, nationally, and the Menil is always a hit with visitors.
7. What do you think is the future of Montrose?
I guess that depends on the time frame. In the next five years, Montrose will continue to increase in population density, it will continue to grow as the premier destination for restaurants and night life, and it will become an increasingly pedestrian-friendly area with enhancements to the biking and walking infrastructure. Beyond that, we’ll start to see an expansion in commercial properties as businesses see the value in relocating to an area where there people actually want to live. I don’t think future generations are going to commute like previous ones; most people don’t want to spend half of their “free time” sitting in a car driving back and forth to work.