Public comments collected on the Draft 2021-2024 TIP are divided into five project topics: Active Transportation, General, North Houston Highway Improvement Project (NHHIP), Roadways, and Transit.
Filter the comments by topic by using the topic buttons and click on a comment number to view the submitted comment.
MPOID 18019, 18145: This roadway is lacking in right turn lanes throughout the corridor. There should be right turn lanes at Hufsmith-Kohrville (EB and WB), Dowdell (WB), greater lane capacity in all directions at the Grand Parkway, including dedicated right turn lanes to and from the frontage roads of the Grand Parkway and longer or dual left turn lane access from WB and EB 2920 onto the Grand Parkway, Stuebner Airline (EB), Alvin A Klein (EB and WB), TC Jester (EB), Kuykendahl (EB, as there already is a dedicated right turn lane from WB 2920 to NB Kuykendahl), Gosling (EB and WB), Rhodes (EB and WB), Falvel (EB and WB), as well as a re-designed lane configuration with appropriate signage that minimizes the weaving of traffic once Spring Cypress merges into 2920. Many vehicles from Spring Cypress are crossing lanes to get over to go northbound on 45, while vehicles from 2920 are crossing lanes to get over to go southbound on 45. This can be a mess and is a high accident area.<
Thank you for your comment. Signal equipment is maintained regularly and evaluated for upgrade as needed. As projects such as widening and other major rehabilitation are performed, signal equipment also is updated.
As 1960 approaches 45 in both directions, there should be overhead signage and even possibly pavement markings well in advance of the two inside lanes that become thru lanes for 1960 traffic and the two outside lanes that serve as frontage roads leading to the 45 frontage roads. Too often, unfamiliar commuters at the last second try to negotiate which lane they need to be in, and part of this is due to signage on the far right hand side of the roadway that can easily be missed alongside the visual clutter that makes up most of the 1960 thoroughfare.
Thank you for your comment. We will evaluate the need for these improvements including improved signage and pavement markings/trailblazers as part of the FM 1960 ITS and access management projects.
MPOID 18019, 18145: This roadway is lacking in right turn lanes throughout the corridor. There should be right turn lanes at Hufsmith-Kohrville (EB and WB), Dowdell (WB), greater lane capacity in all directions at the Grand Parkway, including dedicated right turn lanes to and from the frontage roads of the Grand Parkway and longer or dual left turn lane access from WB and EB 2920 onto the Grand Parkway, Stuebner Airline (EB), Alvin A Klein (EB and WB), TC Jester (EB), Kuykendahl (EB, as there already is a dedicated right turn lane from WB 2920 to NB Kuykendahl), Gosling (EB and WB), Rhodes (EB and WB), Falvel (EB and WB), as well as a re-designed lane configuration with appropriate signage that minimizes the weaving of traffic once Spring Cypress merges into 2920. Many vehicles from Spring Cypress are crossing lanes to get over to go northbound on 45, while vehicles from 2920 are crossing lanes to get over to go southbound on 45. This can be a mess and is a high accident area.
This roadway is lacking in right turn lanes throughout the corridor. There should be right turn lanes at Hufsmith-Kohrville (EB and WB), Dowdell (WB), greater lane capacity in all directions at the Grand Parkway, including dedicated right turn lanes to and from the frontage roads of the Grand Parkway and longer or dual left turn lane access from WB and EB 2920 onto the Grand Parkway, Stuebner Airline (EB), Alvin A Klein (EB and WB), TC Jester (EB), Kuykendahl (EB, as there already is a dedicated right turn lane from WB 2920 to NB Kuykendahl), Gosling (EB and WB), Rhodes (EB and WB), Falvel (EB and WB), as well as a re-designed lane configuration with appropriate signage that minimizes the weaving of traffic once Spring Cypress merges into 2920. Many vehicles from Spring Cypress are crossing lanes to get over to go northbound on 45, while vehicles from 2920 are crossing lanes to get over to go southbound on 45. This can be a mess and is a high accident area.
Thank you for your comment. We will consider these recommendations as part of our phase I design for the FM 2920 Access Management project.
The Houston region, which historically and present day has some of the worst traffic in the state, also has the least amount of permissive left turns at comparable intersections found throughout the rest of Texas. This is a region that has a very robust, yet ridiculously inefficient arterial thoroughfare network. The intersections along 2920 that should qualify for permissive left turns with the flashing yellow arrow signals include Hufsmith-Kohrville, Mahaffey, Dowdell, Emerald Mist, Alvin A Klein, Northcrest Village Way (which they just installed the signal for this intersection in late 2019 and I do not see why it is not allowed for permissive left turns onto northbound Northcrest Village, but at least mast arm supports were used), Gosling, Falvel, Meadow Hill, Hanover Woods, and Lexington. As a side note, the disconnected road segment of Stuebner Airline from the original Stuebner Airline should have permissive left turns as well, but this segment of Stuebner Airline between 2920 and Hufsmith should be renamed, as the original segment of Stuebner Airline that currently dead ends at 2920 near the Hooks Airport is planned to be linked to Spring Stuebner at the Grand Parkway. These two segments of Stuebner Airline will never connect, and it makes absolutely no sense to have two roads in the same area that have the same name, yet are not and will never be connected.
Thank you for your comment. We will consider these recommendations as part of our phase I design for the FM 2920 Access Management project. We will also share your concerns with Harris County as many of the roadways mentioned are under their jurisdiction.
Do us a favor and do yourselves a favor and simply widen this road from two lanes to six instead of just four. This road not only serves as an alternate road to the airport, it is also a main thoroughfare connecting 45 to 69 through the business district of Greenspoint or North Houston District or whatever it is being called now. This, in my opinion, is a microcosm example of reactive road planning versus proactive road planning throughout the Houston region. Please stop the practice of shortchanging our arterial road network and start building our roads right the first time, so that the same road doesn’t constantly have to be revisited year after year, study after study, to update and rebuild a road that should have been built to a higher standard in the beginning.
Thank you for your comment. Roadway planning is based on a variety of inputs, including traffic analyses. The planned improvements are based on traffic analyses which indicate an acceptable level of service for the next 20 years. The City of Houston is also accommodating multimodal uses of its right-of-way that will enable other forms of mobility such as transit, cycling and walking.
Hufsmith-Kohrville, along with Boudreaux Rd both east and west of its intersecting point with Hufsmith-Kohrville, are both in desperate need of widening. Today. The traffic in this area is certainly greater than the two-lane roads that service the area, and if there is any doubt in this assertion, ask the first responders that need to travel these roads during peak hours. In addition to widening Hufsmith-Kohrville from two to four lanes (really should be six lanes but we’ll take what we can get at this point) there should be dedicated right turn lanes both NB and SB at 2920, NB right turn lane at Mahaffey with permissive left turn signals at this intersection, and SB right turn lane at Holderrieth while keeping the permissive left turn signal in place for NB left turns. The biggest issued on Hufsmith-Kohrville road between Spring Cypress and 2920 is its intersection with Boudreaux. HELP!!! I do not know if there is some sort of bridge planned for Hufsmith-Kohrville or Boudreaux similar to Hufsmith-Kohrville and Hufsmith-Kuykendahl, but due to the railroad tracks that intersect both Hufsmith-Kohrville and Boudreaux, the truck traffic from the industrial businesses that are in close proximity to this intersection, the multiple neighborhoods and elementary schools further south on Hufsmith-Kohrville, the new apartment complex just built and the under construction apartment complex currently being built next to it near Boudreaux Rd and the Grand Parkway, and the traffic from both 249 and the Grand Parkway that feed onto Boudreaux, all can make Hufsmith-Kohrville and Boudreaux a traffic nightmare at times. Whether realized by TXDOT or Harris County or not, with no frontage roads on the Grand Parkway between 249 and Gleannloch Forest Dr, Boudreaux Rd is functioning as the east and westbound frontage roads for Grand Parkway, and two lanes simply is not cutting it anymore. If no bridge is built for either Hufsmith-Kohrville or Boudreaux and this intersection remains at-grade, there needs to be right turn lanes in all directions, along with extended or dual left turn lanes for SB Hufsmith-Kohrville to EB Boudreaux and for WB Boudreaux to SB Hufsmith-Kohrville. This is also a dangerous area for pedestrians and cyclists that may be traveling from their neighborhood or apartment complex to the corner store, as there are no street lights, no sidewalks, no shoulders, and nowhere for these pedestrians and cyclists to be except either in the street or halfway down the roadside ditches.
Harris County has initiated or completed projects along Hufsmith-Kohrville between FM 2920 to SH 99 to expand to a four lane with appropriate drainage. There is also an active project along Boudreaux not on the TIP that also has been initiated. Your comments are timely and will be fully considered as these active projects progress.
Again, do us a favor and do yourselves a favor and simply widen this road from two lanes to six instead of just four. This road is parallel to Fry Rd east of 99, and you see the traffic mess that Fry Rd is with all of the developments on that road with its four-lane configuration and lack of permissive left turns, short left turn bays, and hardly any right turn lanes. Houston and Harris County are notorious for allowing just about any kind of development anywhere, and yet TXDOT, Houston, and Harris County are always working behind the developments to scramble and get the roads up to a standard that is commensurate with the traffic that THEY ALREADY KNOW will be generated by the developments. Can you all comprehend how frustrating this is for commuters, as this happens over and over and over again? RAPID OVERDEVELOPMENT AND LAGGING INFRASTRUCTURE DO NOT MIX, but it is still done anyway! Get ahead of the traffic that you and I both know will eventually be on this road. In the DFW suburbs and even in Dallas proper, nearly all of their major arterial roads are built six lanes wide, even when there is no development around (see FM 1171 in Denton County as an example). That is called proactive planning because they have a template of how development patterns mature around the roads that are put in place. They do not worry about building a two-lane road, spending funds on a traffic count a year or two later, then going back out to the same road and perform construction AGAIN to make it a four-lane road (see Cane Island Pkwy south of 10 in Katy for this very example; completed as a two-lane road in 2018 and already needs to be widened to four), only to evaluate it a few years later and see that due to development, a six-lane road is now needed to accommodate the traffic volume. My understanding is this exact same thing is about to happen with Tuckerton Rd from the Grand Parkway to Fry Rd; it is initially being built as a two-lane road…WHY?!? I don’t get it. DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME AND BE DONE WITH IT! Again, I don’t get it.
Harris County has initiated a project to expand Katy Hockley Cut Off Road from a two lane asphalt open ditch (60 foot wide cross section) to a four lane concrete curb and gutter concrete pavement section with storm sewer (100 foot wide cross section) including a bridge over South Mayde Creek beginning approximately 1,000 feet North from FM 529 and extending South to approximately 1,000 feet South of Beckendorff Road. The remaining sections of Katy Hockley Cut Off Road are being evaluated for future consideration.
Add twelve (12) projects to the FY 2021-2024 TIP and minor revisions to two (2) projects to the 2045 RTP.
FY 2022-Planning Expenditures for Public Transportation: FY 2019.
FY 2022- Capital Expenditures for Public Transportation: Capital Cost of Contracting: FY 2019.
FY 2022-Operation Expenditures for Public Transportation: FY2019.
FY 2022-Bus Acquisition and Bus Facilities: FY 2019.
FY 2023-Planning Expenditures for Public Transportation: FY 2020.
FY 2023- Capital Expenditures for Public Transportation: Capital Cost of Contracting: FY 2020.
FY 2023-OPERATION EXPENDITURES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORATION: FY 2020
FY2023-BUS ACQUISITION AND BUS FACILITIES: FY 2020
FY 2024-PLANNING EXPENDITURES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: FY 2021
FY 2024-CAPITAL EXPENDITURES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: CAPITAL COST OF CONTRACTING: FY 2021
FY2024-OPERATION EXPENDITURES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORATION: FY 2021
FY 2024-BUS ACQUISITION AND BUS FACILITIES: FY 2021
HGAC - All submitted projects have been included in draft 2021-2024 TIP.
FY2033-CONSTRUCT A NEW 12' CONCRETE PATH ON FM 242 (COLLEGE PARK DR) WITH RR CROSSING WITH GATE ARMS AND PANELS, A DRAINAGE CULVERT AND LANDSCAPING.
Comment has been forwarded to the project sponsor and sponsor's response is pending.
FY2045- Safe School Access on Kuykendahl Road From Creekside Green Drive To Timarron Drive; Lake Woodlands Drive To Research forest Drive (Excluding Bridge Crossing); Heb (3601 FM 1488) To FM 1488; Panther Creek Drive From Mccullough Junior High School To Spiral Vine Circle.
Can I please have the information on projects in the proposed 2021 TIP presented in this online map in GIS shape file form?
In many previous cases, H-GAC made shape files available for all without needing to ask like this for such data (which is clearly based on a shape file), so I really hope that H-GAC will have a consistent policy of transparency of always publishing important maps like this in a format that people can download the data and do their own analysis.
Similarly, I wish H-GAC would adopt a policy of always providing easy access to spreadsheets like these as actual spreadsheets (basically the excel file), instead of only publishing them in the less accessible pdf format.
These documents were clearly created as spreadsheets, so that actual form of the document should be public, as it is much more useful for independent analysis. In the past, I have reverse engineered a spreadsheet document out of a pdf like this, but its annoying and H-GAC should work hard to make it very easy for anyone to have access to such important data.
The following are LINK Houston’s comments regarding the Houston-Galveston Area Council’s (H-GAC) draft 2021-2024 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). LINK Houston advocates for a robust and equitable transportation network so that all people can reach opportunity. LINK Houston provides these comments as a member of the H-GAC Technical Advisory Committee, as a member of the Make I-45 Better Coalition, and in support of the many people and communities in Houston who rely on walking, biking, and riding transit to access opportunity.
The Transportation Improvement Program is where the rubber meets the road in transportation. It is the actual list of projects from the regional call-for-projects/regional transportation plan that the region is putting forth for actual funding and construction in the next few years.
Local and State Policy Change is Needed – and Resources to Go with It
We understand the TIP process is a routine mechanism to program lists of projects of all types, including for people walking, biking, and transit. If the transportation process were a pipeline the TIP is the water coming out of the spigot. The most significant opportunity to change what comes out of the pipeline is to change where the water is put in. LINK Houston is concerned that the proposed TIP generally continues to invest in roadway expansion, whether highways or major local streets, instead of allocating more resources to projects that improve affordable, urban transportation to support walking, biking, riding transit. Voter support for METRONext (68% percent), civic engagement around the North Houston Highway Improvement Project, the 2045 Active Transportation Plan, and the work of the H-GAC High Capacity Transit Task Force all demonstrate strong and growing support for doing things differently in Houston and the region.
While there is a growing and clear local support for local and high-capacity transit in Harris County and the region, the State of Texas provides no state funds for such projects in metropolitan areas with populations over 200,000 people. There is a clear need for advocacy directed towards state officials to change policy and allocate resources.
We exhort H-GAC and its stakeholders to communicate these changing expectations to state officials to pursue policy changes that unlock State of Texas funds for multi-modal projects in metropolitan areas.
Too Much Money for Roadway Expansion – Out of Line with Public Goals and Interest
As documented in Table 2-1, the proposed TIP allocates about $8.6 billion toward roadway focused projects (admittedly there are some that include transit, sidewalks, and bikeways) and only $1.2 billion to transit focused projects (that also include sidewalks, bikeways). The TIP funds the North Houston Highway Improvement Program (NHHIP or I-45 N expansion) Segment 3 and parts of Segment 2, despite the project having serious, ongoing civic engagement to address fundamental goals and proposed design.
Projects with a federal funding role focus heavily on highways, perhaps underutilizing their general flexibility, which is complicated by the State of Texas recategorizing federal funds to a variety of pools. …
Projects using federal highway dollars are the vast majority of the total $7.7 billion, $1.4 billion of which is state money. [The $1.4 billion from state sources. Some of these projects include small transit, walk/bike, and city street elements.]
Projects using federal transit dollars are $0.8 billion – literally 1/10th that for highways and regional arterial roadways. [The State of Texas allocates zero ($0) state dollars to support metropolitan transit projects. The amount of federal money for transit projects has grown gradually over the decades but remains far less than for highways. Both conditions require and need policy changes.]
Projects using only local money still focus heavily on highways and major streets, in part as a result of local jurisdictions proposing projects under an old paradigm of roadway expansion…
Projects using only local highway funds are $1.5 billion. [Zero ($0) from state sources. Some of these projects also include small transit, walk/bike, and city street elements.]
Projects using only local transit funds are $0.13 billion –?literally 1/12th that for local highways. [Zero ($0) from state sources. Some of these projects include walk/bike and city street elements.]
We need a better pipeline of projects in the region – one driven by the actual goals of the Regional Transportation Plan and that more heavily centers transit and complete streets.
Texas Department of Transportation Must Do Better at Estimating Cost and Takes Advantage of H-GAC Processes and Traditions
Government stakeholders involved in H-GAC’s regionally significant transportation work understand that sometimes the unforeseen arises, policy changes, public priorities change, or etc. and that such occurrences may change the cost of a transportation project. It happens. What should not happen is the largest single stakeholder in a region, in terms of project dollars, comes to decisionmakers to request support for large cost increases – routinely.
In the draft TIP most of the projects with increased costs are from TxDOT. TxDOT’s request is 25 percent higher cost than originally planned during the call-for-projects just last year. Why is our state’s Department of Transportation the worst at estimating costs? If the increased cost is legitimate, such as to mitigate for climate impacts and flooding, perhaps the planned project should be adapted to reduce its impact. Mitigation need not mean more land for more water detention, necessitating right-of-way takings and displacement. Regardless of the reason, H-GAC and stakeholders should hold each other accountable to stay within budget. The budgeted amount from the call-for-projects was used to rank and select projects in that process. Frequently and routinely accommodating significant increases in cost indicates underlying transparency and accountability issues and inequities in the transportation planning and programming process.
This letter related LINK Houston’s comments and concerns on the draft 2021-2024 Transportation Improvement Program.
There is a growing and clear local support for local and high-capacity transit in Harris County and region but the State of Texas provides no state funds for such projects in metropolitan areas with populations over 200,000 people – there is a clear need for advocacy and education to state officials to change policy and allocate resources.
The proposed TIP continues the historical trend of spending multiples more on roadway expansion than on facilities for people walking, biking, and riding transit in existing communities. The TIP is the end of a pipeline that needs better, more equitable projects going into the pipe through the next Call-for-Projects and amendment to the 2045 Regional Transportation Plan.
H-GAC and stakeholders should hold each other more accountable to stay within budget. The budgeted amount from the call-for-projects was used to rank and select projects in that process. Frequently and routinely accommodating significant increases in cost indicates underlying issues and inequities in the transportation planning and programming process.
LINK Houston provides these comments based on our own organization’s mission to advocate for a robust and equitable transportation network so that all people can reach opportunity. We believe every major infrastructure project using taxpayer dollars is an opportunity to improve the quality of life in the surrounding neighborhoods. Many of the region’s residents are non-drivers or walk, bike, and use transit because they want or need to. Transportation infrastructure will continue to influence access to opportunity and quality of life, including health and wellness in Harris County. We hope that as time progresses H-GAC, its stakeholders, and public will converge on improving transportation for people who need it most in existing communities
Develop a schematic option: a route that parallels Northpark behind the businesses along north side of Northpark. It will begin at Woodridge Parkway, squeeze between the back side of Saint Martha’s church and the baseball/soccer/football fields (accessed from Hidden Pines). The route continues along the Bens branch drainage easement all the way to IH 69. This route would allow, not just an overpass at railroad, but also a DIRECT CONNECTOR tying into freeway. Develop the pros & cons (compared to the current alignment) and PLEASE present it as an option to the public . You can call the option ; Northpark Bypass Option
Lake Houston Redevelopment Authority- Mr. Mascardo. We have been forwarded your TIP Comment originally sent to HGAC on 3/4/2020, and related to the Lake Houston Redevelopment Authority’s (“Authority”) Northpark Drive Reconstruction (T-1014) Project (the “Project”).
The HGAC TIP funded Project limits run from Russell Palmer Road on the west to approximately 1,000 feet east of Woodland Hills Drive on the east. Additionally, the HGAC TIP funding is limited to construction cost. That is any public utility costs, right-of-way acquisition costs or another preparatory costs related to the Project must be funded solely by the Authority.
Early schematics for the Project were developed as part of a greater Kingwood Sub-Regional Mobility Study published in 2015. The Study was commissioned in 2013 jointly by the Authority and the City of Houston. These early Northpark Drive schematics were used for as the basis for the TIP Application and originally provided to HGAC in 2018. This Project, also described as the eastern phase is currently scheduled for funding in 2023; as such we are soon to retain a Project engineering team to design the Project. As such, we are some years past the alternative options stage.
With regards to your comments. Several items. First, much of the limits of the Option you describe are outside the limits of the HGAC TIP funded Project. In some instances over a mile west of our projects furthest western limits. Additionally, due to funding, we are limited to the existing right-of-way Northpark Drive. Further, the Authority does not have eminent domain powers, or the ability to unilaterally affect the facilities or operations of other entities (i.e. TxDOT or Union Pacific Rail Road). In addition, much of the property described in your preferred alignment is privately owned and/or in some cases within the limits of the floodway, as such, it would be outside our ability to fund such an Option.
Finally, the Lake Houston Authority projects are funded through tax increments. Due to State Laws governing the use of tax increments https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/TX/htm/TX.311.htm, we can only fund projects within the limits of the boundaries of Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone Number Ten, City of Houston. As such we wouldn’t be able to participate in a project that followed the limits of the alignment described in your preferred Option as it is outside our jurisdictional boundary.
We appreciate your interest.
Ralph De Leon
Park and Ride How about after rush hour, buses come to park & ride every hour I rode a bus from park & ride for over 10 years it was great. I/think this would help people that want to visit downtown. I smaller bus might work at first. Thank you.
METRO - Mr. Noffsinger, thank you for your comment. METRO typically offers service before and after peak hours services serving most Park & Ride facilities currently in the system. Under the METRONext plan, METRO is proposing adding more service to serve Park & Ride facilities during off peak hours and also on the weekends. For more information, please visit www.metronext.org
1) With the increase in B-Cycle throughout 3rd Ward, Midtown, Downtown, and The Heights, it will be more important than ever to prioritize construction of continuous, inter-connected bike lanes throughout these areas to increase biker safety and minimize use of pedestrian sidewalks by bikers. 2) Use of electronic signage at Metro bus and rail stops detailing arrival/departure times and delays. Almost every major city in Western Europe (and now New York and San Francisco) have electronic signage at their bus and rail stops that detail arrival/departure times and delays. Houston is far far behind in use of technology to improve commuter transportation and experience. 3) North and South MacGregor streets coming into UH are in terrible condition and have been for over a decade. We really need to redo those streets as they get a high level of traffic and are continuing to deteriorate.
METRO - Mr. Esmaily, thank you for your comments. METRO recognizes the importance of connecting transit to the bicycle network; as part of METRONext projects METRO evaluates opportunities to include meaningful first and last mile (pedestrian and bicycle) connections to transit. Regarding digital signage METRO is planning on beginning implementation of digital sgnage along some bus routes and Transit Centers beginning on FY2020. If you are interested in more information, you may watch the METRO Board Administration Committee Meeting “Digital Signage” presentation on September 18th, 2019 at https://www.ridemetro.org/Pages/BoardMeetingsAndNotices.aspx
I support the recommendations.
How about fixing the streets in need of much repair before adding to an already exasperated road problem.
We don’t need bike lanes. We need more transit busses and routes. The trains that we have already aren’t being used.
You want to make Houston like New York or LA!
We need to make Houston in its own image! We’re unique and not a cookie cutter place to live.
Though Mayor Turner wants us to be liberal California!! Wake up Democrats!!! Democrats are not the party of the old guard of the by gone years.
Good morning , I wish ya’ll would think about the people that are afraid of driving on the super high bridges, I have to maneuver myself and go a different route just to avoid driving on these bridges, theres also a lot elderly folks that still drive! Thank you and have a blessed day.
Hi HGAC, Overall the last three years I have driven most of the greater Houston area, and am a regular transit user in town as well. SH99 in Katy does back up during rush hour, but it doesn't need to have additional lanes!! Time and time again projects that increase number of lanes only create more traffic (induced demand). More data is needed on the origins and destinations of those motorists. Perhaps many of them are going from jobs in the energy corridor to homes in Katy and Sugarland. We need buses on grand parkway! Energy corridor to Cinco Ranch, energy corridor to seven lakes HS area, energy corridor to New Territory, Pecan Grove, Sugarland, Etc. SH242 in The Woodlands has a lot of use, but even during rush hour there isn't debilitating traffic on the College Park Dr. stretch. Please don't spend the money to widen that road! When are we going to see these billions of dollars of state funds go towards state high speed rail?? When Texans travel to other Texas cities, they frequently go to one area of the visited city and stay there. They don't need a car once they are there. I frequently travel from Houston to Austin, and from Houston to San Antonio, primarily to visit family. I would use rail every time if I could. I love the Westheimer signature bus service, and the 290 HOV lanes to allow busses to get back into town during rush hour to better serve park and riders. Please appropriate more money to transit and pedestrian safety! Thank you, Michael
METRO - Mr. Moritz, Thank you for your comments. As you point out, travel patterns are changing as there are multiple employment centers all over the region. Our regional long range transit plan, METRONext takes these into account, including close coordination with High Speed Rail to ensure our networks are well integrated. Both Westheimer Signature service and the US 290 improvements are part of the program of projects under METRONext; for more information, please visit www.metronext.org
I have been asking officials (TXDOT, COH) a question about what a paragraph on Page 5-57 of the Final Community Impacts Draft means for four months now—and no one can explain it! It is the source of much community upset and ill will for the project as well as for H-GAC. There is reference to a design change made due to community input. It is unclear what the design change is from the plain language of the final ECIS Report.
Here is the paragraph, which has internal contradictions.
I-610 eastbound and westbound access to Fulton Street/Irvington Boulevard: The redesign reversed the proposed Airline Drive entrance ramp and the Fulton Street exit ramp. This would allow eastbound traffic on the I-610 mainlanes and frontage road west of I-45 to access the I-610 mainlanes and/or frontage road on the east side of I-45. The Collector-Distributor system allows for I-610 eastbound mainlane traffic to queue for exiting the eastbound Fulton Street exit ramp without interfering with through-traffic on the I-610 mainlanes.
Any suggestions as to who could decipher? I am trying to do all involved a kindness.
Thank you for the important work The Houston-Galveston Area Council is doing to promote adequate transportation infrastructure in our continually growing region of the state. I appreciate the opportunity to Provide public comments and voice my support for the projects within House District 29.
While out community has benefitted from significant growth in industrial, commercial, retail, and residential areas, the traffic congestion and safety concerns this growth has created must be addressed in a timely manner. Rapid growth naturally creates a strain on funding, and in such an environment, certain project must be prioritized above others.
Some projects in our region require a more immediate solution than others, and it is my belief that the project planned for County Road 64 should be funded prior to the project planned for County Road 63 for two main reasons.
First, Alvin Independent School District will soon begin building its fourth high school in the Iowa Colony community. This new high school's location will require that students be transported across State Highway 288. In order to do so safely, improvements to CR 64 must be made. Second, several multi-family residential facilities are under construction in this same area. The completion of these facilities will cause both safety and congestion concerns that can be alleviated by the CR64 project.
Safety and mobility are of utmost importance to the businesses and families in District 29,a nd the successful completion of these projects will insure our infrastructure keeps pace with the tremendous growth in the region.
Thank you for your assistance in bringing state and federal tax dollars to our region. I appreciate your time and consideration. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at (512) 463-0707 or by email at Ed.Thompson@house.texas.gov.
U.S. Congressman Pete Olson
Texas Senator Larry Taylor
Brazoria County, Commissioner David Linder
Brazoria County, Commissioner Ryan Cade
City of Iowa Colony, Mayor Michael Byrum-Bratsen
City of Alvin, Mayor Paul Horn
Alvin Independent School District, Superintendent Carol Nelson
Alvin-Manvel Chamber of Cmmerce, President Johanna McWilliams
Brazoria County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, President Gina Aguirre-Adams
Pearland Chamber of Commerce, President Carol Artz-Bucek
It’s reported in the Chronicle article that only 11.8% of the funds being planned in this TIP are designated for TRANSIT. Is HGAC aware that 67% of Houston voters said they want METRO Next, that they favor transit? Also, the huge majority of Houstonians surveyed by Huitl-Zollars for preferences in renovation for I-45 NHHIP voted against continuing the car-centric, climate polluting plans designed for I-45 by TxDOT. The projects listed for I-10E and TX-35 alternate are not what citizens have said they want. All of these plans, as names at this time (I-45, I-10,TX 35) contradict the climate action plan. The informed people of Houston want HGAC to put thought, planning and money into TRANSIT, not highways.
Given the current Novel Coronavirus crisis and restrictions in place ordered by Judge Hidalgo, HPB urges the TPC to extend the TIP comment period beyond March 29, 2020. The TIP list is complex and reflects billions of dollars in spending. It requires careful consideration. However, the minds of the public and public officials are understandably focused elsewhere and have been for most of the public comment period (February 28 – March 29, 2020).
We ask that you please provide all the time needed for the public to properly focus on the Draft 2021-2024 TIP.
Thank you for your consideration, and for all your hard work on the Transportation Improvement Program. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at (713) 942-8500.
Our organization requests that the March 27th meeting be cancelled and rescheduled due to the current COVID-19 Public Health Emergency until the "stay at home" order has been lifted and large groups are again allowed to gather.
Comment has been forwarded to the appropriate authorities for consideration and response.
Our organization also requests that the March 29, 2020 deadline for public comment on the 2021-2024 TIP funding be extended. This funding includes Segment 3 of the NHHIP which continues to be controversial. The residents most affected by this project are currently focusing on their basic needs. To take advantage of this crisis to move forward is at best disingenuous.
POTENTIAL COVID-19 DISRUPTION – LIMITED DELEGATION OF AUTHORITY TO TPC OFFICERS AND MPO DIRECTOR
The proposed authorization seeks very broad authority without clear definitions or time limitations. While we understand that this type of authorization will ease some administrative barriers, our coalition is concerned with the lack of clarity on what types of projects and decisions this authority will be used for. Who would decide what is or is not a disaster is unclear. Does this require a Disaster Declaration from Harris County Commissioner’s Court or other Governmental entity? Or just a disaster determined by the TPC?
This is seemingly a major administrative change during a Public Health Emergency when the public’s attention is understandably elsewhere. All normalities in daily lives are gone. We are adjusting to new and uncertain times. We are working from home if we are lucky to have a job, taking care of our children while doing so. We are watching our retirement saving bottom, and what was once a routine trip to the grocery store feels like an event. Some are caring for sick family and friends. This is all emotionally and physically exhausting. Due to the unprecedented nature of this situation, our coalition would like clarification and assurances on a few specific points.
Stop TxDot I-45 requests the following amendments to the Delegation and Authorization of Authority:
Define a disaster as one declared by the Harris County Commissioners Court or other governmental bodies in surrounding counties.
Define what types of decisions would be made using this expanded authority and why
Limit to a declared disaster, in this case the current COVID 19 Public Health Emergency.
Limit authority to a determined time period.
Decisions regarding major projects such as the NHHIP to be excluded from this authorization.
POTENTIAL COVID-19 DISRUPTION – LIMITED DELEGATION OF AUTHORITY TO TPC OFFICERS AND MPO DIRECTOR The proposed authorization seeks very broad authority without clear definitions or time limitations. While we understand that this type of authorization will ease some administrative barriers, our coalition is concerned with the lack of clarity on what types of projects and decisions this authority will be used for. Who would decide what is or is not a disaster is unclear. Does this require a Disaster Declaration from Harris County Commissioner’s Court or other Governmental entity? Or just a disaster determined by the TPC?
Define what types of decisions would be made using this expanded authority and why Limit to a declared disaster, in this case the current COVID 19 Public Health Emergency.
This is seemingly a major administrative change during a Public Health Emergency when the public’s attention is understandably elsewhere. All normalities in daily lives are gone. We are adjusting to new and uncertain times. We are working from home if we are lucky to have a job, taking care of our children while doing so. We are watching our retirement saving bottom, and what was once a routine...
This is seemingly a major administrative change during a Public Health Emergency when the public’s attention is understandably elsewhere. All normalities in daily lives are gone. 2%.
The i45 expansion is not tied to any metrics or facts that make sense. More roads lead to more congestion. 3-5 years of construction of the only major thoroughfare out of Galveston County and Brazoria county is a time bomb. Millennials do not want to live in suburbs. Zoomers don't want to live in suburbs. The current Covid-10 crisis shows that many people could work from home and that highway use is a thing of the past. Do not build this plan, it will destroy neighborhoods and only benefit the richest white developers in Midtown and the west side.
TxDOT uses data from a variety of sources and different traffic models to assist planners and designers in enhancing the roadways that connect residents to homes, businesses, and recreational facilities throughout the Houston region. TxDOT is also concerned with the traffic that passes through our region since Houston is at the center of a vibrant coastal economic region. We are working with urban and regional planners to better understand sociodemographic, socioeconomic, and development needs in the region so we can balance the needs of regional mobility and local quality of life.
H-GAC should not build new roads for developers that flood others... AND block major floodways.. Alvin SH 6 and SH 35 RR underpasses flood every time we have storm rain. Why do folks elected today tax the public and not understand loss of life and property by flooding will kill far more than any virus in the next 10 years. For Brazoria Co focus on evacuation routes and stop building in floodways .
This is seemingly a major administrative change during a Public Health Emergency when the public’s attention is understandably elsewhere. All normalities in daily lives are gone. We are adjusting to new and uncertain times. We are working from home if we are lucky to have a job, taking care of our children while doing so. We are watching our retirement saving bottom, and what was once a routine routine trip to the grocery store feels like an event. Some are caring for sick family and friends. This is all emotionally and physically exhausting. Due to the unprecedented nature of this situation, our coalition would like clarification and assurances on a few specific points.
Thank you for the opportunity to submit public comment for the Draft 2021-2024 TIP. We appreciate the comment extension deadline in light of the current COVID-19 Crisis.
The North Houston Association (NHA), by mission, focuses on regional issues in the north Houston region (north Harris County and all of Montgomery County) that impact the business environment. As such, mobility is one of the primary areas of focus for NHA, and we advocate for transportation projects that will enhance regional mobility in our service area. One advocacy and educational tool we use is our Strategic Mobility Plan (SMP). The purpose of the plan is to identify mobility projects which need financial, political, and public support. Projects were ranked and chosen based on the following issues: mobility, safety, economic development impact, and achievability. Our process is described in detail in the document.
To start, we would like to thank you for including two of our key projects in the Draft 2021-2024 TIP: the Old Conroe Magnolia Rd. Extension and the widening of SH 105. These projects will support the rapid growth of their respective areas, as well as improve safety and mobility.
We also would like to thank you for your support of the North Houston Highway Improvement Project. NHA has been an advocate of this key initiative for years, and we were happy to testify in support of the project in a TPC meeting last year. Although technically out of our service area, the completed project will provide relief northward, especially for the numerous commuters who reside in the north part of the region. Additionally, it will flow into the current I-45 N PEL, of which NHA is participating as a stakeholder.
Related to the I-45 N PEL, one of the top-ranking projects on our SMP is the Robinson Road project (Project P on our SMP). The PEL has its sights on the I-45 N interchange with Robinson Rd., but more is needed that is outside the scope of the PEL. We recommend widening Robinson Rd. to four lanes and realigning the road over the railroad crossing. Currently there are three projected phases of “The Robinson Road” project. Phase 1 is the overpass at IH-45 and Patsy Lane, which has begun construction and is considered a county project. Phase 2 of the project is the realignment of Robinson at Hanna/UPRR tracks and phase 3 is the section connecting phases 1 and 2
The entire segment of Robinson Road between I-45 and the UPRR railroad track is extremely congested, and the City of Oak Ridge's business park is east of the railroad. This has a large negative impact of the potential success of the business park, due to difficult accessibility. This project scored extremely high for us due to the impact on safety, mobility and economic development.
The other two projects we would like to see included in the TIP are construction of the remaining direct connectors at I-45 & SH 99 as well as those at I-69 & SH 99. The Grand Parkway has resulted in improved mobility and has boosted economic development along the route. We ask that funding be provided to finish the project by completing these connectors, so as not to increase congestion at these interchanges and to improve safety.
We at NHA appreciate H-GAC's partnership and commitment to the good of the region. We have a long history of jointly working on regional issues, and we look forward to our continued work together.
Members are the Transportation Policy Council and H-GAC Staff:
Air Alliance Houston appreciates the opportunity to comment on the 2021-24 Transportation Improvement Program.
While we appreciate the attention paid to air quality and environmental justice issues both in the TIP and other MPO planning documents, the projects within the TIP represent a continuation of the paradigm that leads to poor air quality and infringement on vulnerable communities. Too much of our federal and state transportation dollars are being used for roadway expansion projects in our region, purportedly to mitigate congestion and improve level of service. As we have commented previously on other planning documents, the region needs to move away from a paradigm of continued expansion that only promotes sprawl and worsens the congestion issues it sets out to fix. We know this model does not work, and is ultimately costlier for the region in the long run.
The MPO must adopt funding priorities that support maintenance of our current infrastructure and expansion of multimodal options, instead of continuing to rely on the notion that we expanding highways will fix our region’s growing pains. We must move away from a funding structure that relies solely on Level of Service metrics, which only measures how we can best move cars, and develop formulas that will fund projects that best move people. Improving on existing infrastructure and expanding alternative modes are more equitable and environmentally sustainable uses of our region's transportation funds.
RE: 2021-2024 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS (TIP) – DRAFT LISTINGS FOR PUBLIC REVIEW AND COMMENTS
Dear Transportation Policy Council (TPC),
The following are Houston Parks Board’s (HPB) comments regarding the 2021-2024 TIP Project List.
Extension of the public comment period
Given the current novel coronavirus crisis and restrictions in place ordered by Judge Hidalgo and Mayor Turner, HPB appreciates that the TPC extended the TIP comment period beyond March 29, 2020.
HGAC should independently consider the appropriateness of excessive highway funding
A significant amount of the proposed projects are those sponsored by TXDOT and are on-system projects. This body should consider as a matter of policy whether local road funding should be used for on-system highway projects, especially in light of the very significant funding received directly by TXDOT for these projects. Local roads, in contrast, have no other significant options for federal funding, which is especially significant in light of the stress on local road budgets.
Active transportation projects generally are underfunded
Active transportation grants fall short of the percentage allowed in prior calls. HPB believes the funding pattern reflected in the proposed grants undervalue active transportation as a matter of regional policy and is inconsistent with HGAC’s stated goals for quality of life and regional development. We strongly urge at least matching this list’s level and sources of active transportation funding to those in prior calls. The amount of applications in the current call show clear demand for substantially increasing the relative investment in active transportation. If we are learning one lesson from the current crisis, it is the underlying value to society of active transportation in meeting peoples’ most basic needs and desires.
Specific projects HPB recommends
HPB supports all projects on the list that provide active transportation and that provide meaningful safe bikeways, sidewalks, and other pedestrian facilities in conjunction with road projects. All road projects should provide such facilities. HPB also generally supports public transit projects. HPB specifically recommends projects on the list that complement Bayou Greenways and Beyond the Bayous including:
Thank-you for your consideration and your dedication to improving transportation in the H-GAC region.
Beth White – President & CEO
The Baytown West Chambers County Economic Development Foundation (EDF) is in full support of the City of Baytown funding request for the Garth Road Widening Project (MPO Project 17096). Garth Road is the City’s most significant retail corridor and the project, as presented, represents a significant opportunity to enhance safety, economic development and quality of life, while increasing transportation capacity and throughput.
The project directly meets the goals of the H-GAC and the GCEDD Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) vis-à-vis mobility and diversified economic vitality in one of the region’s fastest growing and integrated economies.
The EDF strongly supports the project and its transformational potential for the region. If questions should arise or you require additional information, please contact me at 281.420.2961 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Your consideration is sincerely appreciated. Thank you.
Greetings, I want to reach out and express our extreme gratitude for the past support of H-GAC and the TPC in funding critical transportation needs. In particular we believe there is an opportunity to address a sorely needed project (Garth Road Widening/Reconstruction) that would benefit the Baytown region as this major thoroughfare connects State Highway 146 to Interstate 10. This project will entail full reconstruction and address related drainage needs. If completed, the Garth Road project will help reduce traffic congestion and greatly improve traffic safety. The project will also improve urban mobility to the adjacent commercial and residential areas. All of these aspects make this project a high-priority for the region, especially considering the critical community infrastructure along the corridor, including Houston Methodist Baytown, Fire Station 1, San Jacinto Marketplace, future development, and a key Harris County Transit route. I respectfully ask for your consideration of funding of this significant and very justified regional transportation project. I look forward to speaking with you in the near future. Best Regards, Brandon Capetillo Mayor City of Baytown
The TIP should emphasize road and highway improvements, and cost-effective public transit improvements for bus service. (Light rail is not cost effective and I oppose light rail.) The proposed TIP is generally consistent with those goals, and I support it.
North Houston Highway Improvement Project I support the inclusion of NHHIP projects 155, 7428, 16337, 16329, 16336 and 16330 in the plan.
I would have liked to see at least some of the projects north of downtown included in the plan.
H-GAC should include additional projects in a future TIP plan as soon as possible. (Projects 16328, 16332, 16327, 16333)
SH 35 Projects 202, 209 and 210 I support inclusion of these projects. This will improve accessibility to the University of Houston.
Hardy Toll Road Downtown Connector, project 15208 I support this project. It will improve access to downtown and provide an alternate route during construction of the NHHIP. This project has been excessively delayed, and it should definitely proceed to construction as scheduled in the TIP (9/15/2020)
Grand Parkway between IH-10 West and Westpark Tollway, project 18021 and 18022 The full section between IH-10 and the Westpark tollway should be widened to 8 main lanes (4 each way). Widening to 6 lanes will not be sufficient for long-term needs.
SH 225/BW 8 Interchange Improvements, Project 16340 I would like to see all 8 direct connectors included in this project.
West Loop The West Loop is the #1 most congested highway segment in the state of Texas. I would like to see new capacity for the West Loop included in the TIP. This could be express lanes or managed lanes between IH-69 and IH-10. H-GAC should resume planning efforts to add capacity to the West Loop in a future TIP.
Inner Katy BRT, project 11473 This project should be planned in conjunction with adding four managed lanes (two in each direction) to the Inner Katy Corridor. The managed lanes will connect the existing managed lanes outside Loop 610 and the NHHIP planned managed lanes downtown.
Fort Bend Parkway section B-2 According to the official project web site, http://www.fbctra.com/segment-b2/ "Construction of the overpass and roadway is scheduled to begin in 2021 and will take 16 to 20 months to complete."
This project does not appear to be included in the online documents. Why is it missing?
Grand Parkway sections B and C I would like to see at least some of this project included in the plan. As the planning process proceeds, it should be added to a future TIP as soon as possible.
Metro Project 16345, "SIGNING AND RESTRIPE GENERAL PURPOSE LANE FOR OF-PEAK HOV LANE" This project should not proceed until there is congestion in the off-peak direction. I think it can be delayed to be after 2024.
Houston-Galveston Area Council