An Open Letter to the Ashby Highrise Developers

  • by: Stop Ashby Highrise
  • recipient: Anyone affiliated with the Ashby Highrise project at 1717 Bissonnet, Houston TX

Take action to help stop the development of the Ashby Highrise by Matthew Morgan and Kevin Kirton at 1717 Bissonnet in Houston TX.  Sign in support of the principles in the Open Letter to the Ashby Highrise Developers (see petition tab above or visit Signers need not agree with each provision in the letter, only the general tenor and strength of opposition.

Highrise projects like this one should be located on major thoroughfares that have adequate capacity to handle the additional traffic generated by such projects. In addition, construction of this project poses a real danger to adjacent homes that are only a few feet away. It is imperative that Houston leaders address issues such as increasing the traffic capacity of overburdened two lane streets and neighborhood protection.

Dear Kevin Kirton and Matthew Morgan:
    A 21-story apartment building does not belong in the middle of a historic, single-family residential neighborhood.
    We do not oppose development, but we oppose bad development.  Responsible developers do not locate projects with the disdain that you have shown for the surrounding community, and this disdain reflects poorly on your more responsible colleagues. The Ashby High Rise project is simply the wrong project in the wrong location.
    You cloak yourself in the mantle of property rights and pretend to be the “victim” because the people living in a historic residential community object to your monstrous project.  The truth is that residents of our neighborhoods are the victims.  
    Your property interests do not trump the rights of residents whose property values will be devastated and whose neighborhood will be forever degraded by your oversized, ill-conceived project.  We refuse to become the victims of your insensitivity and your greed.
    We will exercise our First Amendment rights and our other rights guaranteed by the federal and state Constitutions to oppose this inappropriate project.  We are fighting for the value of our homes, our property, and our community.
    It is important that your investors and your construction and permanent lenders have fair notice of our opposition.  If they nevertheless continue to support the project, then as soon as we can identify them, we will appear at their businesses to demonstrate our opposition.
    * We will monitor and oppose you at every step of the permitting process.
    * If you continue your efforts to build this project, we will sue you to protect our interests.  You can look forward to litigating issues under Texas law that will likely have to be decided by the Texas Supreme Court.
    * We will appear at the businesses of the contractors and other service providers who agree to work on your project and demonstrate our opposition.
    * If anyone leases you space for a laydown yard or contractor parking, we will appear at their businesses and demonstrate our opposition.
    * We will scrupulously monitor the construction of the project and we will report and seek relief for every violation of every applicable requirement. 
    * If you nevertheless succeed in constructing this project, we will not stop our opposition, and we will take every lawful action available to us.  
    * It is your duty to notify potential tenants of our opposition.
    * We will picket your leasing office.  Not once or twice, but regularly.
    * We will identify your tenants and send frequent communications to them at their units and their places of business to let them know that they are not welcome in our neighborhood.
    * We will challenge the permits for your restaurant tenant.
    * We will boycott your restaurant and encourage our friends and neighbors to do the same.  We will appear at your tenant’s restaurant and demonstrate our opposition to their presence in our neighborhood.  If your restaurant tenant has other locations, we will boycott and appear at those locations as well.
    * We will appear at the locations of the owners, investors, and chef of your restaurant tenant and demonstrate our opposition to their presence in our neighborhood.
    * We are not a small band of rabble-rousers, as you pretend.  Drive through our neighborhood and count the Stop Ashby High Rise signs.  If you steal them, we will replace them.  
    * And we have many supporters beyond the neighborhood who are standing with us to oppose this project.  Most reasonable people who have seen the site know that a 21-story building does not belong there.
    * It would be a mistake to underestimate our passion and determination.  

-- The residents of Boulevard Oaks and Southampton

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