Cal-de-sac Feng Shui

Examine the Residential Property Values in Cul-de-sac: A Case Study of Feng Shui in Harris County, Texas

By Qisheng Pan, Ph.D. (1), C.C. Lee, AIA, LEED AP, AMDP (2), and Tony Jin (1)

  1. Department of Urban Planning and Environmental Policy, Texas Southern University, 3100 Cleburne St. Houston, TX 77004
  2. The STOA Foundation, 6001 Savoy Dr., Suite 100, Houston, TX 77036
From Qi Strength Viewpoint (1 – Better 2 – Good 3 – Worst 4 – Worse 5 – Bad)

Feng Shui, known as Chinese geomancy, reflects the relationship between human beings and the natural environment. As an essential component of culture and tradition in China and East Asian countries, it has played an important role in shaping society and personal life. However, the effects of Feng Shui have been rarely quantified in rigorous studies. This research intends to explore the relationship between Feng Shui and residential properties in North American settings. It employs the hedonic pricing models with spatial and statistical analysis functions to examine the impacts of Feng Shui concepts, especially the cul-de-sac (dead-end), on residential property values. In this paper, the researchers explore the correlation between the location of residential properties and property values in the Greater Houston, Texas region. It is found that houses located at the optimal location in a cul-de-sac have the highest value while those located at the T-Junction have lower values. The empirical study reports that the effects of the spatial arrangement of properties are consistent with the Feng Shui theory.

Feng Shui, or “wind water,” means two of earth’s flowing elements. It represents the process of maximizing the flow of energy to achieve harmony between people, buildings and nature. The concepts of Feng Shui have deeply rooted in the minds of many Chinese people and influenced traditional architecture, designs, and planning in China and many East Asian communities for thousands of years. The principles and practices of Feng Shui aim to develop a harmonized built environment for people to live in. It aims to select favorable locations, as well as a theory for designing cities and buildings (Lee, 1986).

The relationship between humans and their environment guided by the concepts of Feng Shui dominates personal life in all aspects, including fate, luck, virtue, and education, etc. It is considered as the art of living in harmony with the land, and deriving the greatest benefit, peace, and prosperity from being in the right place at the right time (Skinner 1982). Therefore, the spatial arrangement of the properties in a community may generate different benefits to the households, which may be reflected in their property values.

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Golden Bank Bellaire

A Look Back: Golden Bank Building 25th Anniversary

A Look Back: Golden Bank Building 25th Anniversary

As we close 2018 and look toward our 36th year, we look back at our beginnings and the projects that have made an impact. Being a part of the vibrant, innovative, and the diverse Houston community since 1983, our firm is continually inspired by the growth of the city and the opportunity to create an environment that engages the unique character and vision of Houston.

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of one of STOA’s milestone projects – Golden Bank, one of the first major landmarks in Houston’s Chinatown. STOA was tasked with developing a design that met the client’s ideal vision of a modern bank. The overall concept needed to have a contemporary look that incorporated elements of Chinese architecture while still conveying the “feel” of a banking institution. This translated into a modern glass façade building that features red columns and a green standing seam roof to reflect Chinese tradition and harmoniously interact with the Western environment. With respect to Feng Shui principles and methods, our design needed to be stable, elegant, bright, and clean. The mirrored glass panes allow the natural light to extend throughout the interior while the exterior features an artfully crafted curved glass entrance to enhance the profile of the building, and a coffer shaped roof to represent holding valuables.

During the design development, our team considered factors such as the size, shape, form, and layout of the building as well as the landscape and surrounding buildings to create an ideal environment. The best lighting options, color schemes, furniture placement, and materials were selected to enrich people’s experience within the bank. The Chinese coin is displayed on the façade as a symbol of wealth and prosperity. Within the first year of the bank’s operations, they experienced significant growth in their total assets – doubling from $100 million to $200 million. The financial institution was recently honored as a “Five-Star Bank” (the highest rating in banking industries) by Bauer Financial.

Golden Bank was first founded under the name of Texas First National Bank by a group of Taiwan immigrants in Houston in 1985. In 2006, the bank changed its name to Golden Bank. The bank is the first, and one of the largest privately owned Chinese-American banks based in Texas was established to meet the growing demands in Houston for boutique banking for Asian communities, businesses, and new immigrants. Since its inception in 1983, Golden Bank now has four branch offices in the Greater Houston area (Bellaire Blvd., Harwin Drive, FM 1960-Champions, and Sugar Land), two branch offices in the Dallas-Fort Worth area (Richardson and Plano), and one branch office in Tustin, California. It also operates two loan production offices in Southern California (Irvine and Rowland Heights).

Turtlewood Manor Senior Living Condominiums

Construction has started on Turtlewood Manor Senior Living Condominiums. Nestled in the heart of Chinatown, each of the 62-luxury condominium homes provides a lifestyle where you enjoy the freedom of living without the stress associated with owning and maintaining a house. Experience go-to destinations right outside your door and explore Teo Chew Temple, authentic cuisine, coffee shops, hair salons and more.

This environmentally-friendly building is designed with high-quality features such as 9-foot ceilings, granite counter tops, innovative technology, and an elegant lobby to welcome your friends and family to your beautiful apartment home. Each apartment integrates Feng Shui and green design principles for harmonious spaces that resonate from both the inside and out to promote healthy and peaceful lives.

Site Visit – The Pines at Bellaire

Site Visit! The team recently visited The Pines at Bellaire. The assisted senior living community is a three-story, structural concrete building with zero-combustible materials used in construction. All doors and windows will be ADA compliant with pleasant residential-style interiors for the emotional well-being of the residents with one wing for memory care and Alzheimer’s patients. The structural system employs load bearing metal framing to support structural concrete decks allowing a reduction in the overall height of the building for construction budget efficiency. This facility will aim at serving the elderly Asian community and will feature colors and finishes in compliance with the principles of Feng Shui as well as a meditation garden with a pagoda on a peaceful pond.