TRANSPORTATION UPDATES Harris County commissioners approve $53M for trailway projects Harris County commissioners
COMPILED BY EMILY LINCKE
has “too many unknowns.” “Safety is my No. 1 concern, and I’ve not seen enough of the concept to condently say it’s properly being addressed in these projects,” Ramsey said in an email May 17. Meanwhile, Cagle said he would have preferred additional trails be funded by the county’s parks budget. “While Commissioner [Cagle] is a major proponent of hike and bike trails and has considerably expanded their availability throughout Precinct 4, he voted against this measure because he believes it sets a bad precedent of diverting toll road money to projects not originally envisioned when toll roads were rst pitched to Harris County voters,” said Joe Stinebaker, Precinct 4 director of communications, in an email May 17. The HCTRA identied 22 priority projects that were ranked as having the highest community benet and were given a prioritized timeline. These projects would cover 65 miles and cost $131 million. Some of the more expensive priority
New ways to commute The Tollways to Trailways project will bring biking and walking paths to Harris County for local commuters to utilize daily.
approved $53 million on May 10 for the Harris County Toll Road Author- ity’s new Tollways to Trailways initiative, which will add 236 miles of new recreational trails across each of the county’s four precincts. According to the HCTRA’s planning documents, most of the trails will be placed adjacent to existing toll roads, providing access to existing parks, public transit hubs, schools and neighborhoods. A timeline for the project has not yet been announced. “Tollways to Trailways make the county healthier and more resilient by expanding healthy mobility choices, creating more local green spaces, and giving people transporta- tion options that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve regional air quality,” HCTRA’s plan reads. The request was approved in a 3-2 vote with Precinct 3 Commissioner Tom Ramsey and Precinct 4 Commis- sioner Jack Cagle dissenting. Ramsey said he voted against the item because he believes the project
BIRNAM WOOD BLVD.
236 miles of trails will be added across Harris County. 63 projects are envisioned for the Tollways to Trailways plan across Harris County’s 4 precincts. $601 million in funding will be needed to cover the plan’s trailways.
ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF MAY 19. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT SKLNEWSCOMMUNITYIMPACT.COM. concrete pavement section as well as add/modify trac signals as needed and improve drainage. The project would take place from north of Hick- orygate Drive to south of Otto Road. A construction timeline has yet to be announced, but Harris County Precinct 3 will fund the project. Timeline: TBD Cost: $3.15 million Funding source: Harris County Precinct 3 Birnam Wood Boulevard, Segment 1 This $3.15 million project is still in the study phase; however, proposed enhancements would expand Birnam Wood Boulevard into a four-lane
$53 million in funding was approved for the project by Harris County commissioners on May 10. SOURCE: HARRIS COUNTY TOLL ROAD AUTHORITY COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER projects include a Space Center Bou- levard trail, a west extension to the Cypress Creek Greenway and an Alief East Loop project. Combined, these projects would cost $48.3 million. The remaining 41 projects would be completed later and cover 171 miles at a cost of $470 million.
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SPRING KLEIN EDITION • JUNE 2022
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