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Houston Parks and Recreation Department, City of Houston
2999 South Wayside
Uptown Development Authority
Northwest Transit Center/Memorial Park/Heights Shared-Use Path
Heights Hike and Bike Trail to Northwest Transit Center to the W. Memorial Loop at Memorial Drive (Approximately 23,100 linear feet or 4.3 miles
Memorial Park (Park) is one of the largest urban parks in the United States, a major activity center within the City of Houston, and an important gateway into Uptown. Unfortunately, I-10, Katy Road, and a confluence of Union Pacific Railroad tracks present major barriers for access into the park from the White Oak Bayou Trail and Heights Hike and Bike Trail (aka MKT Trail) systems, both of which are major conduits into the regional trail system. This lack of access impedes regional connectivity on a larger scale by preventing access to and through the Park to the Uptown District in Houston. Furthermore, these barriers prevent two-way access to the planned and TIP funded trail connection which extends south from Memorial Drive down the CenterPoint Energy (CPE) utility easement (Memorial to San Felipe Hike & Bike Connection). This project proposes to overcome these barriers through a creative solution of on and off-road alternative mode improvements.
Additionally, this project will facilitate a transit-oriented connection, stimulated by the Post Oak Bus Rapid Transit Connection at the Northwest Transit Center, between the Greater Heights (Heights Hike and Bike / MKT Trail), Memorial Park, Uptown, and beyond. This provides the connective glue to facilitate true multi-modal transportation in this area of the region.
On a larger scale, this project is a component of a larger “Big Loop” multi-use path / trail system that provides connectivity to an envisioned 30 mile network that connects the Buffalo Bayou trail system, Downtown Houston, Eado, Brays Bayou, and several connecting trails that radiate across the region. This project is a critical component of this “Big Loop” system. An interactive map that depicts this trail in relationship to the Big Loop concept is available here:
The trail being applied for under this application is entitled Segment 1 within the web link.
Finally, this project will accommodate a multi-modal link to Uptown and Memorial Park, which can be achieved through a combination of public transportation (utilizing the adjacent METRO network), bicycle, and pedestrian access.
The project follows a corridor of approximate 23,100 linear ft and has the following scope:
• Connect to the Heights Hike & Bike Trail at Moy St. via new bike route signage.
• Continue signage around Egbert St. under TC Jester and west along Kansas.
• At Kansas and Hempstead build 12’ shared use path (SUP) to connect to existing (under construction) path under UPRR overpass. Construct protective railing along Hempstead.
• Heading southeast down Washington, construct 8’ wide SUP (limited ROW).
• Connect to existing signalized crossing at Hempstead/Washington/Old Katy, improve crossing delineation, and install bollards. Cross Washington and Silver Eagle, widen existing sidewalk to 12’ SUP heading west.
• Coordinate crossing in front of Silver Eagle Distributors property (initiated)
• Continue west via 10’ SUP (limited ROW) underneath UPRR overpass (coordination with UPRR documented). Continue 10-14’ SUP to Northwest Transit Center. Note in this location the presence of a “ghost bike” memorial to a deceased cyclist. This SUP will provide a safe alternative for future cyclists within this section of the project. A photograph is included with this application.
• Just east of UPRR overpass, provide stair and ramp network up to just east of UPRR to CenterPoint Energy (CPE) easement. (Coordination with CPE documented).
• 12’ SUP runs south in CPE easement.
• Drop in 12’ wide, ~300’ long prefabricated steel bridge to span I-10. (Coordination with TxDOT documented.)
• 10-12’ SUP runs south along CPE easement.
• Southern terminus of project connects to existing SUP just north of Memorial Drive.
Note that landscaping associated with this project is limited to the replacement of sod.
Design alternatives were evaluated during the 30% phase. These include the review of alternative connections to the Heights Hike & Bike Trail, crossing locations at I-10, crossing locations at Washington Ave., alignments along Old Katy Rd. to avoid the UPRR overpass, and pathways utilizing private property adjacent to Silver Eagle Dr. It was determined that the alignment presented within this application provides the safest, most efficient, and feasible design solution to implement the project. If funded, the alignment will be reviewed to react to constraints identified through the final design process.
In relation to the section along Silver Eagle Dr., we are aware that this is a sensitive location due to the utilization of the adjacent property by a freight-related distribution center. The exact placement of the SUP has been discussed with Silver Eagle and several options have been identified to help improve safety at this location. Potential solutions include the placement of the SUP within the median which exists between Silver Eagle Dr. and Katy Rd., modifications to the existing median openings, and the introduction of HAWK beacons to accommodate bike/pedestrian pre-emption. It is intended to develop these options further through a detailed final design process.
The purpose of this project is aligned with the draft goals and objectives of the 2045 Regional Transportation Plan:
• Improves safety for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other alternative mode users by providing safe access into and through the Park along dedicated or otherwise marked connections.
• Eliminates the barriers of Washington Avenue, Old Katy Road, and IH-10.
• Provides transit access via METRO connectivity to the Northwest Transit Center. This transit connectivity ties into the regional fixed route and park and ride networks. A significant amount of use is expected to be drawn from the Greater Heights, Uptown, Rice Military, and Spring Branch areas.
• Expands multimodal network capacity by creating new alternative mode thoroughfares which directly and indirectly connect to major regional activity centers (Uptown, Memorial Park, White Oak Bayou Trail, Heights Trail, Buffalo Bayou Trail, Downtown Houston, etc.) This will improve multimodal Level of Service (LOS) and free up capacity along existing motor vehicle thoroughfares through trip conversion.
• This project is anticipated to generate 355 new daily pedestrian users and 122 new daily bicycle users. The implementation of this project will enable those new users to choose an alternative mode of transportation, rather than the single occupancy motor vehicle.
• Provides an estimated $4.9M one-time property value increase and an overall tax benefit of $3.7M through the introduction of multi-use paths, which have been shown to provide an increase in adjacent property values (see attached benefits summary).
• Serves to conserve and protect natural and cultural resources by providing a convenient and safe connection to and from Memorial Park, which will allow for visitors to educate themselves on the natural amenities housed within Memorial Park.
• This project will leverage and extend previous regional investments through providing connectivity to several alternative mode improvements previously funded by federal, state, and local governments.
Less than $100 million
View Uploaded File: 21_NWTCMPHSUP_Resolution and Funding Commitment.pdf
Categorical Exclusion (CE)
(C)2 - Acquisition, construction, maintenance, rehabilitation, and improvement or limited expansion of stand-alone recreation, pedestrian, or bicycle facilities, such as: a multiuse pathway, lane, trail, or pedestrian bridge; and transit plaza amenities.
View Uploaded File: 20_Interagency Coordination, Concurrence & Agreements.pdf
View Uploaded File: 5_NWTCMPHSUP Schedule.xlsx
• A coordination meeting with TxDOT occurred on April 24, 2018. Furthermore, environmental documentation and a letter of no prejudice request (LONP) are being developed and coordination with the FTA is on-going regarding this project. This project is intended to be an FTA transfer in order to streamline and expedite implementation. TxDOT has indicated a desire to manage and let the pedestrian bridge component spanning I-10. If this is the case, funds associated with that component of the project can be channeled directly through TxDOT with the remainder of the funding being transferred to FTA.
• Note that categorical exclusion documentation is currently being developed for submission and approval by FTA. The documentation is complete and is pending 4F sign off prior to submission to FTA for review.
• The 30% design is predominantly complete. The City of Houston (COH) does not typically require a formal process for off-street projects, but if a formal technical review committee process is initiated, the formalization of the work completed would take approximately 90 days.
• The development of these projects have involved coordination with TxDOT, the Memorial Park Conservancy, the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, Harris County, CPE, COH Public Works and Engineering, and COH General Services Department. Additionally, parks projects are reviewed at monthly meetings of the Uptown Management District and Uptown Development Authority. These meetings are open and advertised to the general public, with an invitation for feedback and written comments. Information regarding agendas and supporting material for these meetings are available within the links provided below.
• Additionally, a public meeting regarding this project was held at St. Theresa’s Church on July 9, 2018. Information regarding this public meeting is attached to this grant application.
• This project connects to the northern terminus of the previously funded TIP project “Memorial to San Felipe Hike & Bike Connection.”
• This project connects to other SUP projects submitted via this TIP Call for Projects. These are:
o The Richmond to San Felipe Path
o Uptown / Memorial Park Connector Path and Bridge
• Coordination meetings, discussions, e-mails, and phone calls have occurred with:
o Memorial Park Conservancy
o Houston Parks Department
o City of Houston PWE / Planning / Parks
o Interested members of the public
o Welcome Wilson Group
o Houston Arboretum
o Silver Eagle Distributors
o Harris County Flood Control District
o CenterPoint Energy
o Houston METRO
• A license agreement with CPE will be required. The license agreement is a templated document that has been standardized by CPE and several other regional partner agencies. This agreement can be executed near final design when survey has been completed and CPE can denote the full and exact alignment.
• Genesis of project is Memorial Park Master Plan (2015)
• This project is part of the City of Houston Bike Plan.
• Additional project development work completed as part of the development of Uptown’s 10 Year CIP Planning Process (2017)
• Culminated in 30% design process (2017-2018)
• Project is currently being developed as an LONP which will further the readiness of the project. This process will complete the following:
• Place the project in the TIP and STIP as locally funded. - COMPLETED
• Complete and codify the NEPA process. – NEARLY COMPLETED
• Expedite the grant execution process should the project be funded.
• Allow project development activities to continue under federal protection for reimbursement should funding be made available through this opportunity.
• The estimated year of implementation of FY24 is due to the availability of local funding. Existing commitments prevent funds from being allocated much earlier than that time. However, if funded, the sponsor will work to make funds available as early as possible to minimize cost increases due to inflation and other future unknowns.
View Uploaded File: NWTCMPHSUP TIP Readiness Materials.zip
View Uploaded File: UPT Old Katy Trail MPK map.zip
View Uploaded File: 4_NWTCMPHSUP Budget Worksheet.xlsx
View Uploaded File: Old Katy Trail_Transit-Active-Transportation-Safety-Benefits.zip
View Uploaded File: Old Katy Trail_delay-benefits.zip
View Uploaded File: Old Katy Trail_Emissions-Benefits.zip
View Uploaded File: Old Katy Trail Supporting files.zip
View Uploaded File: Old Katy Trail Supplemental Benefits.zip
This project is a shared use path for bicyclists and pedestrians. There are different users and trip lengths for bicyclists and pedestrians; thus 2 sets of sheets are submitted for each category.
901 - 1000
The project is in the Houston Bike Plan, the Memorial Park Master Plan (2015) and was adopted in the H-GAC Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) in October 2017. The MPO ID is 13200. The development of these projects have also involved coordination with TxDOT, the Memorial Park Conservancy, the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, Harris County, CPE, COH Public Works and Engineering, and COH General Services Department. Additionally, parks projects are reviewed at monthly meetings of the Uptown Management District and Uptown Development Authority.
Houston Bike Plan: http://tei-houston.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=0d493ce6ec01481b82cec71bf7f67374 The Memorial Park Master Plan (2015): https://issuu.com/memorialparkhouston/docs/mph_mpbook_final_small_webversion_a_c7f9e7eed3d03c H-GAC Transportation Improvement Program (MPO ID 13200): http://www.h-gac.com/taq/tip/docs/2019-2022/000--2019-2022-TIP-Full-Document.pdf Planning Coordination: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/midowwlbrdknmp7/AAC5my8OtZGYvMX_3CDL8o5Ka?dl=0
Houston-Galveston Area Council