Northwest Mobility study emphasizes W. 43rd St.

Apr. 11, 2014Heights Leader

West 43rd St. was among the most prominent corridors discussed during the City of Houston’s Northwest Mobility Study meeting on April 2 at the Candlelight Community Center.
The city’s Planning & Development Department began the Northwest study last year and released most of its findings last week. They’ll take public comments and recommendations from residents through May 2.

The entire study and the public comment section are available online at houston-northwest.org.

The Northwest study was the city’s first suburban Mobility Study. The study’s vast area has 54,000 residents and extends north-south from Loop 610 to Beltway 8 and east-west between U.S. Hwy. 290 and I-45.

To put that population into perspective, the Heights is 11 square miles with the same number of residents.

W. 43rd Street is a 38-mile long road that, under other names, extends into Waller County. But its distance in the study is 6.5 miles of primarily residential space between Hwy. 290 and I-45.

Amar Mohite, of the city’s Planning Department, said the study emphasized the importance of preserving W. 43rd as a four-lane road, along with the addition of a bicycle lane.

While some of the stretch is divided, Mohite said it’s important to keep W. 43rd undivided between Shepherd and Ella, because a lot of single family homes are located near it. He said it will encourage people to driver slower in that area.

One resident asked how construction for the streets featured in the Mobility Study will be funded.

Mohite said the city will evaluate and prioritize the streets in need of improvement and gradually add them to the city’s Capital Improvement Project.

Also, some street construction will be funded through the city’s drainage fee. When streets are under construction for drainage, they will be rebuilt to suit their current needs, instead of returned to their former state, Mohite said.