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TIRZ 10 Administrator
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Lake Houston Redevelopment Authority / TIRZ 10
Lake Houston Redevelopment Authority Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone Number Ten c/o Allen Boone Humphries Robinson 3200 Southwest Freeway, Suite 2600
City of Houston
Division Manager, Transportation Planning
Northpark Drive Reconstruction Project
Russell Palmer Road to ~1,000 FT east of Woodland Hills Drive (Approximately 1.2 miles)
The Northpark Drive Reconstruction Project (“NDRP”) is the reconstruction and widening (4 to 6 lanes) of Northpark from Russell Palmer to ~1,000 FT east of Woodland Hills, located in Kingwood. This project will work with the adjacent locally funded project to the west, referred to as the Northpark Drive Overpass Project (“NDOP”). The NDOP consists of the widening of Northpark from IH-69 to Russell Palmer and includes the construction of an overpass at Loop 494 and the existing UPRR ROW. The NDOP will let in 2020 by TxDOT through a partnership with the Lake Houston Redevelopment Authority (LHRA). Completion of both projects will result in the reconstruction and widening of Northpark from IH-69 to Woodland Hills.
The problems which will be addressed via the NDRP are:
1) Northpark is congested and operates at a poor LOS
• The H-GAC TDM reflects V/C ratios that grow from 1.47 to 1.80 between 2015 and 2030. Daily delay is expected to grow from 643 hours in 2020 to 1,103 hours in 2030.
• The typical intersection LOS along the limits of the NDRP is an E.
• Congestion on Northpark is identified as a major issue in the Kingwood Mobility Study.
• The facility does not accommodate alternative modes.
• The NDOP will widen the road to the west from 4 to 6 lanes to include an overpass at Loop 494 and the introduction of bicycle and pedestrian facilities; if the section between Russell Palmer and Woodland Hills is not constructed, congestion and conditions that endanger life and property will continue to persist and comprehensive alternative mode accommodations will not exist.
2) Crash rates along the corridor are higher than the statewide average
• The crash rate for 4 lane divided roads in urban areas is 377 per 100 million vehicle miles travelled (MVMT). According to 2016 data, this segment of roadway had 808 crashes per 100 MVMT, more than double the statewide average. This is due to a high level of congestion, varying pavement types and conditions, poor access management, a lack of bicycle/pedestrian facilities, and a need to modernize the facility.
3) Northpark does not currently provide an all-weather/emergency evacuation route
• The NDOP will create an overpass which will facilitate a crossing over Loop 494 and the UPRR ROW and expedite evacuations. This will work in collaboration with improvements anticipated to be constructed by the NDRP as it will be designed for the 500-year storm event, allowing vehicles to traverse the facility during extreme flood events. The elevation of this facility is a critical component of the long-term resiliency of Kingwood.
• The facility is regularly inundated during high water events at Ben’s Branch prohibiting access for emergency vehicles.
4) Northpark is in poor condition
• A 2016 pavement condition survey identified longitudinal and transverse cracking and several asphalt repairs along the corridor.
The project lies within the jurisdictions of the City of Houston, Harris County, and Montgomery County. Northpark Drive is one of the most heavily traveled roadways in the Kingwood area with daily traffic volumes at approximately 40,000 (compared to Kingwood Drive at 35,000). Steady growth in the Kingwood area has led to increased traffic levels and congestion on this minor arterial (current federal functional classification), major thoroughfare (City of Houston classification) corridor. This congestion is anticipated to continue as demonstrated within both micro and macro traffic analysis. The H-GAC model projects volumes growing to nearly 50,000 in 2030. The existing facility is a four-lane facility with a posted speed limit is 45 miles per hour.
The project corridor has a continuous median of varying widths, currently about 40’ at its narrowest point. The corridor currently has severe access management issues due to a proliferation of commercial/industrial driveways. This has led to a crash rate along the corridor which is nearly twice the statewide average.
There are no continuous pedestrian or bicycle facilities between Russell Palmer Road and Woodland Hills Drive (though sidewalks do exist in sections east of Hidden Pines Drive). Parallel bridges without alternative mode accommodations exist approximately 1,500 feet east of Russel Palmer, presenting a barrier to alternative mode access.
The project submitted via this TIP application is the reconstruction and widening of Northpark Drive from a 4-lane to a 6-lane facility from Russell Palmer Road to ~1,000 FT east of Woodland Hills Drive. Other improvements include: storm water retention and detention improvements, the elevation of the roadway to provide an all-weather evacuation route, the installation of landscaping and street trees per City of Houston requirements, the reconstruction of roadway bridges to include alternative mode accommodations approximately 1,500 feet east of Russel Palmer Road, a pedestrian tunnel at Glade Valley Drive, signal timing improvements along the corridor and upgraded traffic signals at existing signalized intersections (Russell Palmer Road, Woodridge Parkway, Woodland Hills Drive). To accommodate bicyclists and pedestrians the project will include a 10’ shared use path on both sides of the roadway. The project also includes the replacement of water lines as necessary to comply with current City of Houston standards.
The roadway itself will be elevated in a manner which complies with 500-year flood event design standards and will elevate the roadway at Ben’s Branch so that a continuous evacuation route can be maintained during flooding events. It is important to note that collectively, along with the planned Overpass Project to the west, this corridor will be the primary evacuation corridor from Kingwood and will be the only direct access point that does not conflict with the UPRR tracks, which run parallel to the IH-69 for the entirety of Kingwood.
1) Reduce delay, improve travel times, and reduce congestion
• Microanalysis projects that the NDRP would reduce daily congestion related delay by 479 hours in 2020, 903 hours in 2030, and 1,703 hours in 2040. This aggregates to an annual delay reduction of ~151,000 total hours (using an average of 260 work days per year) in 2023 (year of implementation) and ~443,000 hours in 2040.
• The improvements along the NDRP, when combined with the planned improvements via the NDOP will improve delay and congestion existing along Kingwood Drive, Ford Road, and other primary east-west corridors in the area. According to the H-GAC TDM (macroanalysis), annual vehicle hours travelled (VHT) savings as compared to the no-build scenario for each of the facilities are as follows:
o Kingwood Drive – 69,661 annual VHT reduction in 2020 and 70,761 annual VHT reduction in 2030
o Ford Road – 7,768 annual VHT reduction in 2020 and 19,930 annual VHT reduction in 2030
2) Accommodate all modes
• The improvements will accommodate all users through the construction of a 10 FT shared use path on both sides of the roadway.
• Using H-GAC pedestrian trip conversion factors, and National Cooperative Highway Research Program report data, it is estimated that the estimated new daily pedestrian and bicycle users in 2020 are 838 and in 2040 are 951.
3) Improve Vehicular Safety for Travelers
• There were a total of approximately 178 crashes between 2015 and 2017 along the Reconstruction Project alignment, resulting in a variety of injuries.
• Adding a through lane, modernizing the roadway design, the introduction of access management improvements, and adding a safe bicycle/pedestrian pathway will lead to a measurable reduction in crashes thereby improving safety and reducing the rate and commensurate economic cost of crashes along the corridor.
• The estimated safety benefit per 2018 Highway Safety Improvement Program criteria of the proposed improvements is quantified as an attached supplemental benefit.
4) Improve Resiliency
• The proposed improvements will accommodate 500-year storm events and allow for the safe evacuation and transportation of individuals in this area during flood and other natural disaster scenarios.
5) Allow for Maintenance Dollars to be Repurposed
• To ensure a roadway is functioning as designed or also known as in a state of good repair (SOGR), regular maintenance and preservation must occur. The on-going maintenance (~1,000 FT replacement of concrete panels in 2021 and 2030 and ~5,050 FT mill and overlay of the asphalt section of the roadway in 2021 and 2030) is costly and this segment will require substantial maintenance throughout the 20-year planning horizon. Reconstruction will result in savings for both users (delay during maintenance) as well as the agency (maintenance costs). The estimated 20-year SOGR benefit for this project is $4.3M.
Less than $100 million
(Expand) Roadway Added Capacity/New Construction/Complete Streets
View Uploaded File: 24_LHRA Resolution of Support & Funding Commitment.pdf
Categorical Exclusion (CE)
Open-ended (d) CE as the project meets all the criteria in 23 CFR 771.117(a) and the definition of a CE in 40 CFR 1508.4.
View Uploaded File: 22_Lake Houston - TIRZ 10.pdf
View Uploaded File: 20_Northpark Schedule.xlsx
• LHRA providing cash funding for ROW and PS&E. This is not included within the grant request. The estimated cost of these activities is $7.5M.
• A scoping meeting was held with TxDOT on April 13, 2016. Coordination has continued since that meeting. The understanding of the project is that both the NDOP and the NDRP (if funded via this TIP process) will be let and managed by TxDOT. An AFA is being developed currently for the NDOP.
Significant work on the project has been completed to reach the current project development status:
• The work associated with the 30% design submission is substantially complete. If funded, the full 30% design can be submitted within 90 days of a funding agreement.
• This project was amended into the H-GAC RTP.
• Completion of schematic design to include delineation of staged construction opportunities, line item costs, and right-of-way necessary.
• Phase I Environmental Site Assessments have been completed and Phase II work is ongoing.
• NEPA (open ended CE) has been initiated
• Coordination with TxDOT on the execution of an AFA has been initiated, draft AFA is currently under development.
• A USACE Nationwide Permit is expected for the project and will be submitted with completion of 60% design.
• City of Houston Public Works and Engineering, TxDOT, Montgomery County, and Harris County have reviewed the project and supports the conceptual design and implementation of same.
• State and US legislators are aware of the project and support design and implementation.
• There is broad based public support for this project; see attached letters of support.
• The project was conceived as a component of the May 2015 Kingwood Mobility Study. As part of the public process related to the Study, there were a total of five Steering Committee meetings which were open to the public, and two Stakeholder Meetings. A dedicated e-mail address, an on-line survey, and project website was created to gather input from residents and provide information for review. An estimated 1,300 people responded to the survey and the results were posted on the project website. The project has been discussed at LHRA and TIRZ 10 meetings, Houston City Council District E CIP meetings, and Houston City Council District E Town Hall and Community meetings from 2016 to the present. Additionally, LHRA has attended and presented the project to every Home Owners Association in Kingwood that is accessed directly from Northpark Drive, the Lake Houston Chamber of Commerce and the Kingwood Bizcom monthly meetings, and the Lone Star College Kingwood Campus faculty and staff meetings. LHRA has presented the project to the City of Houston Mayor’s and City Council Members offices, the Houston Public Works, Legal and Planning Departments, Montgomery County Judge’s Office, Montgomery County Precinct Four Commissioners Office, and Harris County Precinct Four Commissioners Office. Numerous articles have appeared in the Houston Chronicle, My SA from Houston Chronicle, Guidry News, the Kingwood Tribune, the Community Impact, and the Kingwood Observer Newspapers.
Several alternatives were considered in the development of this project:
Widen and expand Hamblen Road Instead of Northpark Drive – Consideration was given to the widening of Hamblen Road and create an overpass similar to the option being proposed for Northpark. This option was discussed with the public twice by City of Houston Council Member Dave Martin and Harris County Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle. Due to a negative reaction to this option, this alternative was removed from consideration.
Widen Kingwood Drive Instead of Northpark Drive –consideration was given towards the construction of an overpass on Kingwood Drive and the widening of Kingwood Drive from four to six lanes. Public sentiment regarding this alternative was very negative due to the need to destroy a significant pre-existing woodland area occurring along the corridor.
There are numerous activity centers bringing traffic into the Northpark corridor in Kingwood. Attractors within approximately one mile of the project area include:
• Courtyard Houston Kingwood – 111 rooms.
• Discovery at Kingwood – 12+ buildings of multi-family housing.
• Homewood Suites – 75 suites.
• Insperity Sports Complex – sports facility for lacrosse, football, etc.
• Isle at Kingwood – assisted living facility.
• King’s Landing – over 300 units of multifamily housing opened in 2015.
• Kings Manor Elementary School
• Kings Mill Aquatic Center/Recreation Center and Playground
• Kingwood Park High School – approximately 1,700 students.
• Kingwood Senior Village – senior living facility.
• Lone Star College – branch of Lone Star College offering associates degrees.
• Mallard Creek at Kingwood – 30+ buildings of multi-family housing.
• Paramount at Kingwood – 15+ buildings of multi-family housing.
• Ravella at Kingwood Apartments – 264 multi-family units
• Regent Care Center of Kingwood – assisted living facility.
• ShowBiz Cinemas
• Village at Northpark with Kroger Marketplace – 24-acre retail center and apartment development
• Village at Northpark South – will include The Learning Experience (early education), 10,500 square feet of retail, and Home2 Suites.
• Villas of Kingwood – over 30 buildings of multifamily housing.
• Walmart – 24 hour store with pharmacy and garden center.
• Watercrest Kingwood – approximately 170 senior housing units opened in 2014 to create a “campus” with the existing Emeritus at Kingwood.
• Weatherford Production Optimization– drilling contractor with 200+ employees.
• Woodridge Forest – designed for 800 single family homes, four sections completed in 2015.
View Uploaded File: LHRA TIP Readiness Materials.zip
View Uploaded File: LHRA Northpark MPK.zip
View Uploaded File: 6_Northpark Budget Worksheet.xlsx
View Uploaded File: Northpark_Roadway-Safety-Benefits.xlsx
View Uploaded File: Northpark_delay-benefits.xlsx
View Uploaded File: Northpark_Roadway-Emissions-Benefits-2018speed.xlsx
View Uploaded File: 197-bca-4.xlsx
View Uploaded File: Alternative Benefits.zip
Methodologies provided on zipped files.
901 - 1000
0.11 - 0.20
View Uploaded File: Northpark_lottr-estimation.xlsx
Highway/Freight LOS: The project will improve highway/freight LOS. Northpark, when improved, will serve major activity centers in Kingwood, provide connectivity to the interstate highway system (IH-69) and carry the highest traffic volume in Kingwood (as it already does currently.) It will also be the logical thoroughfare to carry the majority of freight traffic in and out of Kingwood. This will be due to its increased throughput as well as the planned overpass to be implemented as part of the Northpark West project. Both micro and macro analysis demonstrate that this project would reduce daily congestion related delay, thus improving LOS for highway and freight users.
Transit LOS: The Eastex/Townsen/Kingwood Park and Ride route currently travels down Kingwood Drive to access the Park and Ride lot located approximately at the intersection of W. Lake Houston Parkway and Kingwood Drive. In the future, it would be logical for METRO planners and operators to make the decision to utilize Northpark Drive for this route. Doing so would reduce two grade separated interesctions (UPRR and SH-494). However, even if METRO planners and operators decide to continue utilizing Kingwood Drive, macroanalysis demonstrates that the improvements on Northpark will also benefit congestion and delay on Kingwood Drive. It is anticipated that the Northpark improvements will reduce VHT on Kingwood Drive by approximately 70,000 VHT annually. This will improve transit LOS for park and ride commuters by reducing their total travel time.
Bike/Pedestrian LOS: The project will improve bike/pedestrian LOS by accommodating all users through the construction of a 10’ shared use path on both sides of the roadway. The proposed project will provide the opportunity for residents to choose alternative modes of transportation, such as biking and walking. Combined, the estimated new daily pedestrian and bicycle users in 2020 are 838 and in 2040 are 951. The estimated total bicycle and pedestrian trips as a result of the project improvement is 384,800 in 2020 and 434,800 in 2040. According to the USDOT, the average operating cost for a vehicle in 2016 is $0.41 per mile. The proposed improvement will enhance the ability of users to bike and walk, thereby reducing on average 142,900 annual vehicle-miles traveled.
The project was conceived as a component of the May 2015 Kingwood Area Mobility Study. Cordination with TxDOT is ongoing. The current understanding of the project is that both Overpass Project and the Reconstruction Project (if funded via this TIP process) will be let and managed by TxDOT. An Advance Funding Agreement (AFA) is being developed currently for Northpark West. The project was adopted in the H-GAC Transportation Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) in December 2016. The MPO ID is 87.
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/2wbynnilh6przau/AAD2-rnLyeFNfay5yWJd2BjUa?dl=0. May 2015 Kingwood Area Mobility Study: https://www.houstontx.gov/council/e/kingwoodreport/finalreport.pdf. H-GAC Transportation Improvement Program (MPO ID 87): https://www.h-gac.com/taq/plan/2040/docs/Amendment-2040-5-signed.pdf
Houston-Galveston Area Council