What a mercurial year it’s been, Houston.
A record-setting year in real estate only stumbled on Hurricane Harvey before catching itself and resuming its sprint into 2018. It didn’t take long for the housing market to recover from its sizeable hiccup. By the end of September, home sales had rebounded and we saw the greatest amount of rental activity to date with all the positive momentum carrying into the end of the year.
Per media reports, the energy market stabilized, unemployment decreased, and we far exceeded our expected job growth numbers for 2017.
We started the year off with a historically riveting Super Bowl LI which featured an unbelievable comeback by the New England Patriots to overcome the Atlanta Falcons. The city was alive with excitement and the event brought with it an estimated economic impact of $347 million.
The University of Houston approved the establishment of a Cougar College of Medicine, a long sought-out goal, and sets its sights on welcoming its first students in 2020.
For a moment, we were all in unison as we looked into the sky at what is now dubbed “The Great American Eclipse”.
Hurricane Harvey’s inundation of the Greater Houston Area also revealed that this city has an abundance of kindness and strength in the face of adversity.
The Houston sports landscape was quite busy as well! The Houston Astros brought home their first World Series trophy. We bore witness to the grand arrival of Deshaun Watson before losing him and Houston sweetheart JJ Watt to injury. And the Houston Rockets heralded in the beginning of an era under the new ownership of Houston mogul, Tilman Fertitta.
We got a Christmas surprise and got to bask in our first snowfall in almost a decade.
And most importantly… Although it won’t be opening here for a while, In-N-Out secures land for its first Houston location as the battle between it and Texas favorite Whataburger heats up.
What do all these seemingly unrelated events have to teach us?
They share a lesson about finding the good in any situation and persevering through adversity. Last year was a year to remind us that we are not defined by our failures but by how we react to them and how we overcome them. No matter how tough it gets, Houstonians always come back stronger and it is our grit and kindness which we choose to guide us forward.
2017 was a year to remind us that the future is as bright as we want it to be and Houston has the tools to shine brightest.
Bring on 2018. We’ll make a success story of this one too.