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Astrodome, Houston

2.1
#191 of 244 in Things to do in Houston
Architectural Building · Hidden Gem · Arena / Stadium
(Scroll down for Chris Alexander bio)

A proposal for reinventing the Astrodome as a destination attraction anchored by several museums and surrounded by an amenity-rich green park

This master plan envisions a surrounding 90-acre green park, a new hotel and arena, and a monorail linking all the amenities. Along with a tree canopy, great lawns and water features, the green park would feature an outdoor music pavilion rivaling the Cynthia Woods Mitchell, a community garden, flex-use conference center pavilions and such recreation amenities as an illuminated climbing tower, a uniquely themed carousel, a sand castle beach, climbing bluffs, and a grotto cafe behind a waterfall. (If that seems like a lot, consider that the proposed park would be bigger than Anaheim's Magic Kingdom.) The proposal would widen streets and add a new street at the park perimeter, and would relocate most parking in new garages.

An Encompassing Vision

Taken together, the redesign is intended to serve the Astrodome's surrounding neighborhood, the larger Houston area and tourists from around the world. It envisions collaborative contribution from segments of the entertainment industry, the green/sustainable urban design community, and the urban garden movement. It is intended for night and day use, and it emphasizes fitness and active recreation.

This proposal replaces most of the parking lot (approximately 88 acres) with a wooded green park removing all fossil fuel vehicles from the park's pedestrian spaces. Certain areas of the park are elevated above the base level, to create artificial hills with multilevel parking garages below.

Park features include:

A music pavilion with a large reflecting pool and a multi-story audience hill over one of the parking garages.

A 3-acre community garden with greenhouse and adjacent area for a farmers' market. (The closest existing farmers' market is at Rice U.)

Who is Astrodome Tomorrow creator Chris Alexander?

Chris Alexander

Houston native, 68 years old

First visit to the Astrodome 1965 at age 15

Highlights of a multifaceted life in the arts

Southeast U.S. Creative Director for The Hodes Group Advertising, a division of Omnicom Worldwide

Publication Designer and Art Director for St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital and the Texas Heart Institute

Playwright and screenwriter, two-term president of Scriptwriters/Houston

Vice-President, Theatre LaB Houston, 1990s

Site Research Photographer, River Walk Market redevelopment project, New Orleans, for Diversity Art & Design, 1975

Professional fine artist for 40 years, numerous exhibitions

Founding and current member of the Houston psychedelic improv band Fyrst Tryp (keyboard)

Studies

BFA Cum Laude SHSU 1974

Fine Art Exhibitions

Group Exhibition, New Orleans City Park, 1974

Solo Exhibition, Lafitte's Cafe In Exile New Orleans 1975

Solo Exhibition, Diversity's Gallery, New Orleans 1976

Group Exhibition (curator), Vision's Gallery, Houston, 1979

Group Exhibition, Boulevard Gallery, Houston, 1985

Solo Exhibition, Rice Lofts, Houston, 1992

Solo Exhibition, Cafe Artiste, Houston, 1995

Group Exhibition, Cafe Artiste, 1998

Solo Exhibition, Doc Java, Houston 1998

Group Exhibition (curator), Gallery 1521, Houston, 1999

Group Exhibition, Laura Camos Designs, 1999

Group Exhibition (curator), The Cheap Shot Room at Ashland Street Theater, Houston, 2000

Group Exhibition, Kingwood College Art Gallery, Kingwood, TX 2001

Two-artist Exhibition (curator), Some Assembly Required, Kingwood College Art Gallery, Kingwood, TX 2002

Published Writing

Artspace Quarterly

Arts International

Performing Arts
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  • I believe I went on the Texas Twister at Astro-world and then we saw monster trucks and fireworks at the Astro dome at night. over 20 years ago. The Houston Astros no longer play there but the field....  more »
  • The amazing stories one could tell about this stadium. A relic of a bygone era that still stands today. Constant political battles always be fought over what to do with it.  more »

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