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The $60 Million Hangover


The weather this past week did not suck. Our visitors from colder climes now know one of our great secrets. Winter! It seems at first glance that the city and the NBA put on a safe and prosperous all-star event. I saw evidence of community service efforts by day and many VIP events at night, perhaps explaining the TNT half-time hangover. The city of Houston chamber estimated an influx of 50,000 people and at least $60m spent. The Galleria had to be shut down due to over capacity Friday in spite of the 6 mph traffic games. (Note to TXDOT: Who decided to close the Westheimer exit off 610 Loop South Friday?)

So, overall, the city gets a lot of good press and revenue. The restauranteurs will need some days off to recover from the back-to-back Valentines to Ballentines turnover. Judging by the police presence, there was plenty of scoring and penalties charged after hours. I'd like to see what that cost adds up to.

It was a nice TV event, but not too much in it for the population at large. Certainly nothing to remember for decades. Next year will be the 20th anniversary of the Rockets back-to-back championship runs. That we can all agree on.



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