The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) dedicated a new Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) facility that will be better able to handle the expected growth in flight operations in the Houston area.
The Houston TRACON is responsible for controlling air traffic over roughly 16,000 square miles of airspace stretching from the Texas-Louisiana border to approximately 35 miles east of Austin and from Galveston to 30 miles north of College Station. The City of Houston is leasing the 47,500 square-foot facility to the FAA at no cost. The new TRACON is located on 21 acres of land at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) facility and replaces an outdated structure that was commissioned more than 40 years ago.
First held in 1931 as the Houston Fat Stock Show and Livestock Exposition, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, or Houston Rodeo has been the signature event for its host city for over 80 years now. Held over 20 days at Reliant Stadium, the Houston Rodeo features a diverse program of entertainment including musical acts, livestock auctions, pig racing, the World Championship Bar-B-Que Contest, and of course, championship rodeo competition. Last year's event saw a record attendance of 2,506,238 people, requiring over 28,000 volunteers to organize. They say everything is bigger in Texas, and when it comes to Houston, the country's fourth most populous city, this three week rodeo festival is no exception. While many of the acts are country, this year's slate of artists features Usher, Selena Gomez, REO Speedwagon, Maroon 5, and Robin Thicke to diversify things up and provide a little bit of something for everyone. Despite all the hype and anticipation Houston Rodeo tickets demand is slightly lower this year, according to local Houston broker, MyTicketIn. Last year's rodeo included appearances by Mary J Blige, Demi Lovato, Styx, Pitbull, and BrunoMars , whose positive reviews and massive attendance contributed to him being selected to perform at the Super Bowl.
Reliant Stadium is about to become NRG Energy.
Reliant Stadium is about to become NRG Stadium and Reliant Park will be called NRG Park in a sweeping switch engineered by Reliant's parent company — NRG Energy. The Chronicle first reported the change.
NRG Energy acquired Reliant Energy's retail operations in 2009. Now, NRG has plans to change every stadium sign that currently bears Reliant's name.
Questions still loom at this early stage whether the name change will be applicable to Reliant Center, Reliant Arena and the still-in-limbo Reliant Astrodome. The details of the new change will be discussed March 19 at the next board meeting of the Harris County Sports and Convention Corp., which runs the Reliant Park complex.
Reliant purchased the naming rights for the stadium, where the Houston Texans play, and park buildings in 2002 for $300 million, a then-record naming rights fee. The stadium is the only rodeo and NFL indoor/outdoor retractable roof, natural grass stadium that can be configured to utilize a 125,000 square foot space for general sessions, catered functions, exhibits, concerts and much more.
It's the most high-profile stadium in Houston and is set to host the 2016 Final Four and the 2017 Super Bowl, mammoth events that will give the new NRG name plenty of play.
NRG's retail serves 1.6 million customers in Texas. Its retail operations have operated under the Reliant Energy name while the remainder of the former Reliant Energy became RRI Energy.
What do you think of the sudden name change? Will you embrace NRG Stadium or still call it Reliant? Sound off by leaving a comment.