Houston’s Museum District
The Houston Museum District is an association of 19 museums, galleries, cultural centers and community centers in Houston, Texas, dedicated to the advancement of art, science, history and culture. Currently, the Houston Museum District is home to 19 museums with more than 8.7 million visitors each year. All museums offer free times or days, and 11 museums are free all the time. On Thursdays, the museum area is particularly crowded due to non-museum days. On Thursdays, the Houston Museum of Natural Sciences is open after 2 p.m., the Houston Children’s Museum is open after 5 p.m., the Health Museum is open from 2 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the Houston Museum of Fine Arts is free all day. Houston’s Museum District is walkable and bikeable. Sidewalks are wide and well maintained, and attractions and restaurants are close by. The area is roughly bounded by Texas State Route 288, Hermann Park, United States. With Route 59 and the Texas Medical Center. The Museum District Civic Association compared the area to Georgetown, Washington, and the French Quarter in New Orleans. The museum grounds are served by four METRORail stops, one named after it, and are easily accessible via I-69/US 59, State Highway 288 and Main Street, across from Rice University’s main entrance. The beginning of the museum area dates back to 1977, when it became clear that measures had to be introduced to facilitate access to museums in the region.
This demand for community improvement evolved into the non-profit Montrose Project in the mid-1980s, but soon after became the Museum District Development Association of Houston (MDDAH). Based on the work of this organization, the museum district was officially recognized by the City of Houston in 1989. The founding organization dissolved in 1994, but the museum district is now part of the Houston Museum District Association, founded in 1997. The Museum District attracts visitors, students and people of all ages, backgrounds and ethnicities to learn about and celebrate art, history, culture and nature from around the world. For more information about the 20 institutions in the Houston Museum District, visit their official websites. The Third Ward Redevelopment Council designates the museum area as part of the Third Ward. T. R. Witcher of the Houston Press wrote in 1995 that the area and surrounding areas “are not the first places that come to mind when you say ‘Third Ward.’ By the late 1970s, the area that now includes the Houston Museum District was run down and in dire need of local, county, and state government attention to improve roads and beautify the area, making it unsafe for pedestrians and bicyclists. The Houston Museum District began as a grassroots community movement in 1977 led by Alexandra R. Marshall. Its idea was to create a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood centered around the Museum of Fine Arts at the intersection of Bissonnet Street and Montrose Boulevard. For such an extremely vehicle-centric city that still holds the title of the largest US city without zoning, it was pretty progressive. The Houston Museum District Development Association has proposed a multi-phase plan to beautify and make the area between Allen Parkway, Buffalo Bayou and Hermann Park more pedestrian-friendly. It seized the opportunity to create a crucial neighborhood in Houston similar to the French Quarter in New Orleans, St. Germain in Paris and Georgetown in Washington. Don’t forget to check out this place in Houston too.
Since its inception, the many efforts of Houston Museum District organizations have included community improvement projects, tree planting, sidewalk design, construction and expansion, Esplanade design, development and beautification, public transportation to and from the area, police support, and various cultural events. The Montrose Association, Museum District Municipal Association, South Main Civic Association, Houston Cultural Arts Center, and TALA (Texas Auditors and Art Attorneys) contributed to the development and subsequent success of the Houston Museum neighborhood. Two major cultural attractions, founded by Houston philanthropists and art collectors John and Dominique de Menil, are located in Zone 1. Admire more than 16,000 works of art from the Paleolithic to the present in the Menil Collection, then meditate in the Rothko Chapel, a Houston landmark and shrine. Finally, browse the rotating photography exhibits and enroll in a workshop at the internationally renowned Houston Center for Photography. You will be introduced to different cultures at attractions such as the Asian Society Texas Center, the Houston Czech Center Museum, and the Houston Museum of African American Culture. Discover leading contemporary artists at DiverseWorks, Houston Center for Contemporary Crafts, and Lawndale Art Center. Learn important history at the Buffalo Soldiers National Museum and the Houston Holocaust Museum. Enter the Houston Museum of Art, one of the nation’s largest art museums, with 63,000 historic and contemporary works of art from around the world. For more art, check out the rotating exhibits at the Houston Museum of Contemporary Art, housed in a quaint stainless steel building in the heart of the Museum District. The Jung Center in Houston has more art, but the star of the show is the more than 200 courses offered throughout the year, from ethics to meditation. Kids especially love Zone of the Houston Museum District. Here they can hang out with giraffes and sloths at the Houston Zoo, go on adventures at the Houston Children’s Museum, walk through the butterfly habitat at the Houston Museum of Natural Sciences, and participate. in a science experiment at the Health Museum. Architectural art is the main attraction at the Moody Center for the Arts, where you’ll find a collection of outdoor sculptures as you stroll around Rice University’s campus. If you are ever in need of home renovation or repair, click here.