Portal:Houston

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The Houston Portal

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Houston /ˈhjuːstən/ is the fourth-largest city in the United States of America and the largest city in the state of Texas. As of the 2009 U.S. Census estimate, the city had a population of 2.3 million within an area of 600 square miles (1,600 km2). Houston is the seat of Harris County and the economic center of the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area—the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the U.S. with a population of 5.9 million.

Houston was founded on August 30, 1836, by brothers Augustus Chapman Allen and John Kirby Allen on land near the banks of Buffalo Bayou. The city was incorporated on June 5, 1837, and named after then-President of the Republic of Texas—former General Sam Houston—who had commanded at the Battle of San Jacinto, which took place 25 miles (40 km) east of where the city was established. The burgeoning port and railroad industry, combined with oil discovery in 1901, has induced continual surges in the city's population. In the mid-twentieth century, Houston became the home of the Texas Medical Center—the world's largest concentration of healthcare and research institutions—and NASA's Johnson Space Center, where the Mission Control Center is located.

Rated as a beta world city, Houston's economy has a broad industrial base in the energy, manufacturing, aeronautics, transportation, and health care sectors and is a leading center for building oilfield equipment; only New York City is home to more Fortune 500 headquarters in the city limits. The city has a population from various ethnic and religious backgrounds and a large and growing international community. It is home to many cultural institutions and exhibits—attracting more than 7 million visitors a year to the Houston Museum District. Houston has an active visual and performing arts scene in the Theater District and is one of few U.S. cities that offer year-round resident companies in all major performing arts.

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Photo credit: Daniel Schwen

Beach at Galveston, Texas on the Gulf of Mexico

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Hurricane Ike ([aɪk]) was the ninth named storm, fifth hurricane and third major hurricane of the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season. It was a Cape Verde-type hurricane, as it started as a tropical disturbance off the coast of Africa near the end of August, then tracked south of Cape Verde and slowly developed. On September 1, it became a tropical storm west of the Cape Verde islands.

By the early morning hours of September 4, Ike was a Category 4 hurricane, hitting its peak intensity with maximum sustained winds of 145 mph (233 km/h) and a pressure of 935 mbar (27.61 inHg). That made it the most intense storm so far in the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season. At one point the diameter of Ike's tropical storm and hurricane force winds were 550 and 240 miles (885 and 390 km), respectively, making Ike the most massive Atlantic hurricane recorded.Ike also had the second highest IKE (Integrated Kinetic Energy) of any Atlantic storm in the past 40 years. Integrated Kinetic Energy is a measure of storm surge destructive potential, similar to the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale, though the IKE is more complex and in many ways more accurate. On a scale that ranges from 1 to 6, with 6 being highest destructive potential, Ike earned a 5.2 on September 11 at 12:30pm (EDT). In comparison to Ike, hurricanes Katrina and Wilma, both from the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season peaked at 5.1. As such, had Ike made landfall as a Category 3 or higher, the hurricane would have likely had a record breaking storm surge and the potential for damage could have been worse than what was seen with Hurricane Katrina. However, Ike made its final landfall in Texas, United States as a Category 2 hurricane.

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Joseph Stephen Cullinan (December 31, 1860 - March 11, 1937) was a U.S. oil industrialist. Although he was a native of Pennsylvania, his lifetime business endeavors would help shape the early oil industry of Texas. He founded The Texas Company, which would eventually be known as Texaco Incorporated.

Joseph S. Cullinan had a profound impact upon the city of Houston. In addition to being one of the key supporters for the development of the Houston Ship Channel, he also built the North Side belt railway. He supported venues such as the Houston Symphony Orchestra as well as the Museum of Fine Arts (Houston). He served as president of the Houston Chamber of Commerce from 1913 until 1919. During World War I, he served under Herbert Hoover as a special advisor to the Food Administration. For five years starting in 1928 he served on the Mount Rushmore National Memorial Committee.

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The Baytown Nature Center is located in Baytown, Texas, 20 miles east of Houston. It is located on a 450-acre peninsula along the Houston Ship Channel and surrounded on three sides by Burnet Bay, Crystal Bay, and Scott Bay. The Baytown Nature Center is both a recreation area and a wildlife sanctuary that is home to hundreds of bird species, mammals, reptiles, and aquatic species. The City of Baytown created this Nature Center 10 years ago. The SWA Group’s Houston office provided carried out land planning and landscape architectural services.

The Baytown Nature Center was, in the 1940s and 1950s, a highly desirable residential neighborhood known as Brownwood with nearly 400 substantial homes on a 500-acre peninsula. In 1961, Hurricane Carla devastated the Texas Gulf Coast, flooding Brownwood and ending any new development in the area. Afterwards, subsidence became a serious problem as oil and chemical facilities along the Houston Ship Channel pumped out groundwater faster than natural forces could replenish the water table. Thus, during the 1970s and 1980s, much of the Texan Gulf Coast (including Brownwood) sank a total of 10 to 15 feet. Brownwood, which had previously been high and dry, was repeatedly inundated by high tides and storms.

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"What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them."

- Barbara Bush, commenting on the Hurricane Katrina refugees in the Houston Astrodome on Marketplace, March 6, 2005

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Houston lists

Here are some of the lists about Houston on Wikipedia:

Built environment and economy

Cities and towns in Greater Houston • Highways • Neighborhoods • Tallest buildings • Johnson Space Center buildings • Companies • Newspapers • Shopping malls

People

People raised in Houston • Mayors • Rice University people • University of Houston people

Education

School districts • State-operated charter schools • Colleges and universities

Sport

Houston Astros (all-time roster, owners and executives, first-round draft picks, managers, seasons, Opening Day starting pitchers) • Houston Rockets (all-time roster, first and second round draft picks, head coaches, statistics and records, season) • Former professional sports teams

Culture

Events • Films set in Houston • Houston's Funniest Person Contest • Sister cities

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