A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from March 16, 2008
Houstonize ("Don’t Houstonize Austin")

"Houstonize” is the verb form of the name of the city of Houston, fourth largest in population in the United States. “Houstonize” can refer to getting someone acquainted with the city of Houston and its ways. More frequently, “Houstonize” means to develop into a large, modern city.

“Don’t Houstonize Austin” was an anti-development slogan used in the city of Austin in the 1980s, followed in the 2000s by “Keep Austin Weird.”


Wikipedia: Houston, Texas
Houston (pronounced /ˈhjuːstən/) is the fourth-largest city in the United States of America and the largest city within the state of Texas. As of the 2006 U.S. Census estimate, the city has a population of 2.14 million within an area of 600 square miles (1,600 km²). Houston is the seat of Harris County and an economic center of the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area—the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the U.S. with a population of more than 5.5 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 Mission Control Center is located.

Houston’s economy has a broad industrial base in the energy, manufacturing, aeronautics, and technology; only New York City is home to more Fortune 500 headquarters. Commercially, Houston is ranked as a world city, and the area is a leading center for building oilfield equipment. 

Google Books
New York Days, New York Nights
by Stephen Brook
London: Hamish Hamilton
1984
Pg. 32:
“Without our efforts, developers would be left undisturbed to Houstonize New York City.”

Google Books
Politics in America:
Members of Congress in Washington and at Home
by Alan Ehrenhalt and Renee Amrine
Washington, DC: CQ Press
1985
Pg. 1499:
Complaints about traffic tie-ups, the use of water resources and overtaxed city servies have been lumped together under a single slogan: “Don’t Houstonize Austin.”

Walter Geology Library, UT-Austin
LAND USE AND CULTURAL CHANGE ALONG THE BALCONES ESCARPMENT: 1718-1986
E. Charles Palmer
(...)
Austin has moved in quite a different direction. After a number of years of business-oriented city government, a new city council and mayor were elected in 1984 with promises to control and direct growth and to protect the quality of life that old-time residents have seen as fast disappearing. “Don’t Houstonize Austin” was a frequent admonition of the new regime. Ordinances to limit building height and density, to preserve views, and to maintain water quality have been implemented. A Hill Country Road Ordinance sets limits on building height and density along scenic roadways west of Austin.
(...)
in Abbot, Patrick L. and Woodruff, C. M., Jr., eds., 1986, The Balcones Escarpment, Central Texas: Geological Society of America, p.153-162.

Time magazine
NICELY, NICELY
Monday, Aug. 26, 1996 By CALVIN TRILLIN
(...)
And Haley Barbour hovered near To whisper in each speaker’s ear, “The polls, my friend, will surely rise, If we can just de-Houstonize.”

6 March 1998, Austin (TX) American-Statesman, “Austin has its mind set on growth compromise” by Chuck Lindell, pg. A1:
A popular bumper sticker was “Don’t Houstonize Austin,’’ reflecting a common perception that population growth was stripping Austin of its special ...

Google Groups: alt.politics
Newsgroups: alt.politics
From: “Harold”
Date: 2000/09/30
Subject: Let’s don’t Houstonize Alaska.

It’s time to think conserve.

Google Groups: houston.geeneral
Newsgroups: houston.general
From: (Professor Vonroach)
Date: Sat, 02 Jun 2001 12:08:57 GMT
Local: Sat, Jun 2 2001 8:08 am
Subject: Re: houstonians or houstonites

On Sat, 02 Jun 2001 00:19:50 -0500, Jim Riley
wrote:
>>Leon gets paid to make stuff up and fill newspaper space. Ask him, and
>>I suspect he will grudgingly admit that people out in the country call
>>Houstonians, `city folks’. Some given to hyperbole may even say `big
>>city folks’. Leon can’t be called an `other’ anymore than Walter
>>Cronkhite, Dan Rather, or a spate of other folks.

>His column was about how country folks would eponymize ‘Houston’ into
>‘houstonite’ and ‘houstonize’ to describe city folks bringing their
>ways to their hobby farms.  People in the country would use
>houstonize.

>--
>Jim Riley

Perhaps he spent too much time talking to the strange folks like the Madam over around Wayside and Navigation? It’s a cinch that he never spent much time out in wave at your neighbor country if he actually wrote that. I personally have never heard the word `Houstonite’ or `Houstonize’ and I suspect he was in a bind for copy if he actually wrote that. Now you can reply are you comparing your knowledge and experience with his, and I would reply, “Hell yes - every 60+ years, minute of it.” `Houstonite’ sounds as phony as `Austinian’ or `Dallasonian’. Sounds like some damn parasite.

Google Books
Worldminds:
Geographical Perspectives on 100 Problems
edited by Donald G. Janelle, Barney Warf, Kathy Hansen
Boston, MA: Kluwer Academic
2004
Pg. 211:
Concomitantly, typical symptoms of urban sprawl, such as extensive suburbs, increasing traffic jams, deteriorating environmental conditions, and erosion of the central-city tax base, began to surface in Austin. Both citizens and government officials are aware of these problems—one of the most popular bumper stickers in the city recently has been “Don’t Houstonize Austin!”

Houston (TX) Press
KACC Mentality
Alvin Community College’s little radio station churns out young pros and the best rock in Houston
By John Nova Lomax
Published: March 30, 2006
(...)
“We also get a lot of experienced radio people from other markets who want to ‘Houstonize’ themselves,” she says. By which she means, among other things, to learn how to pronounce some of our treacherous local landmarks and street names so they don’t sound like a moron on the air.

“Like ‘Kuykendahl’?” I ask. “Yes. And Fuqua,” Forsythe replies with a smile. “That’s always a fun one for us.” (For the record, it’s “FEW-kway,” not “FUCK-wah.” And “KIRK-in-doll.")

Austin (TX) American-Statesman
TALES OF THE CITY: TOMMY X. HANCOCK
Band finds “different Texas than Lubbock”
Sunday, March 16, 2008
(...)
On our way home, Jimmie Dale Gilmore booked us for a gig in Austin. When we got here, we saw a bumper sticker that said “DON’T HOUSTONIZE AUSTIN” and wondered what it meant. (Now we know.)

It was October 1980.

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Sunday, March 16, 2008 • Permalink