Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners (2001)
Fred Hartmann Bridge
The view from the Fred Hartmann Bridge is hauntingly beautiful, particularly at sunset. From this graceful perch unfolds a landscape straight out of science fiction, an expanse of petrochemical plants fanning out along the snaking Ship Channel as far as the eye can see. As darkness descends, flares lap at the sky, and little white lights outline the plants' towers, pipelines and processing units like twinkling Christmas lights. The vista conjures images of a metropolis from a different galaxy. Roughly half of the nation's petrochemical industry cleaves to Houston's paved bosom, and no place affords a better view of that industrial might. Out-of-town visitors will be duly amazed at this uniquely Houston panorama. The bridge, which runs along Highway 146 and connects La Porte to Baytown, overlooks Alexander Island, Black Duck Bay and Tabbs Bay, as well as the San Jacinto Monument, our soaring tribute to Texas independence. With its sleek yellow cables and long, tapered roadway, the Fred Hartmann Bridge is itself a lovely site to behold.