One of the largest, most diverse cities in the country, Houston is renowned for its culinary scene, theatre district, educational institutions, and medical facilities. If you’re looking to learn more about the Bayou City sprawled out around your Montrose apartments, here are 10 fascinating and fun facts.
1. “Houston” was the first word heard from the moon
The phrase “Houston, we have a problem” has a ring of familiarity for most Americans. Fewer Americans know that “Houston, Tranquility Base here” were the first words man directed to Mission Control from the moon. They were followed by the more recognizable string: “The Eagle has landed.”
2. It is forbidden to sell Limburger cheese on Sundays
In Houston, Limburger cheese lovers have to remember to stock up on Saturdays. Although it is unlikely to be enforced, an old law bans sale of the infamously pungent cheese on Sundays.
3. NRG Stadium was the world’s first domed stadium
The NRG Astrodome, also known as the Houston Astrodome, was constructed between 1962 and 1965 and is the world’s first multipurpose, domed sports stadium. Its design caught on, and inspired other domed roof sports venues like AT&T Stadium in Dallas and Atlanta’s Georgia Dome. Today, eight NFL teams play home games under domed roofs.
4. Houston’s highest point is 125 feet above sea level
Houston is pretty close to the Gulf, but the city is even closer to the sea—sea level that is. In fact, it’s only a little over 100 feet away. Its highest point, in the northwestern part of the city’s limits, is 125 feet. The average elevation downtown is around 50 feet.
5. Houston is home to the first traditional Hindu temple in the nation
Constructed from 33,000 pieces of hand-carved Italian marble and Turkish limestone, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir of Houston was the first traditional Hindu mandir, or temple, in the U.S.
6. Houstonians eat out more than almost anyone else
Houston’s underrated culinary scene is buzzed about enough that most people know the Bayou City has some good restaurants under its Texas-sized belt. Fewer people care to mention just how often Houstonians tend to eat out. According to Zagat’s research, Space City has been taking its meals at restaurants more than any other city for the better part of the last decade. Only in 2015 was Houston surpassed by Atlanta, and it still remains only a hair’s length behind.
7. There’s a burping bubble in the Buffalo Bayou
If you’ve noticed that mysterious red button on the Preston Street Bridge, you’ve come closer to “burping” the Buffalo Bayou than most Houstonians. The button, located in the middle of a brick column on the south side of the bridge, is unmarked. Press it, and the Bayou will bubble for several seconds. Kids absolutely love it.
8. J.P. Morgan Chase Tower is the tallest five-sided building in the world
The J.P. Morgan Chase Tower is Texas’s tallest building and the world’s tallest five-sided structure. Initial plans for an even taller height were restricted due to concerns about interference with air traffic going in and out of William P. Hobby Airport.
9. Houston is home to the largest medical center in the world
Alright, this fact may be more well-known than most of the others on this list. But in case you weren’t already aware, the Texas Medical Center is the world’s largest, and it is a pretty big deal. Affiliated with Rice University, The University of Houston, and other esteemed institutions, the medical center has a local economic impact of billion per year.
The next time you walk by the Buffalo Bayou, NRG Astrodome, or J.P. Morgan Chase Building, appreciate these sites for the natural and man-made marvels they are. Further familiarize yourself with the Bayou City and its treasures by exploring our regional blog posts.
Do you have any fun facts about Houston to add to this list? Leave a comment below.
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