Construction on New Montrose Signs and Esplanades Scheduled to Begin
On Tuesday, the Montrose District’s Board of Directors unanimously approved bids for two major neighborhood improvement projects that have been in the works for years: the installation of 14 custom-designed identity markers at major intersections along the perimeter of the district, and the construction of six new esplanades situated along some of Montrose’s major traffic arteries. Together with new lighting for the district’s six bridges over US 59, the improvements are intended to give Montrose a more cohesive visual identity, making it even more attractive to new businesses and residents.
“There will now be a consistent vocabulary for Montrose,” said Montrose District Board Chairman Claude Wynn.”You’ll know you are in Montrose because of the character of everything you’re seeing—the signs, the esplanades, the bridge lights. It’s very exciting to finally have a lot of the things we’ve been working on come together at the same time.”
Designed by the acclaimed landscape architecture firm Kudela & Weinheimer, the lighted, nine-foot-tall identity markers will be made of gray aluminum and will feature a striking Art Deco–style design. “These aren’t just little toppers on street signs,” Wynn said. “From the beginning, I was very insistent that this had to be world-class stuff. We’re not just going to do esplanades where you plant a few flowers—these have to have high-quality design so they’re there for the duration.”
From the beginning, the board was determined not to do anything halfway, said Montrose District Executive Director David Hawes: “Good planning brings good results, and this is the culmination of a couple of years of hard work.” The signs, the esplanades, and the bridge lighting are all scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016, just in time for Super Bowl LI in February 2017.
Also discussed at Tuesday’s board meeting was the district’s application to the City of Houston for a special parking area, which will allow for better utilization of current both off- and on-street parking at commercial properties. Montrose District Director of Special Projects Tony Allender said that the district is following a “first do no harm” policy. “We don’t want to create any additional problems in residential neighborhoods,” Allender said. “We want to decrease the problems.”
The cumulative effect of all these improvement projects—the bridge lighting, the new signage, the reimagined esplanades, the special parking area—will be to enhance Montrose’s identity as one of Houston’s most dynamic neighborhoods. “It was really important to me that we didn’t do anything temporary,” Wynn said. “The identity markers, along with the esplanades, will become part of the fabric of Montrose.”