The story of Houston’s growth and its roads has always been about bigger. More people has meant more concrete, farther into the suburbs and wider in the dense core.
Now, state transportation officials are starting to re-write that, planning major projects focused on managed lanes along key freeways that encourage transit and carpool use, while potentially providing places to test new types of transportation.
For some commuters, it is long past time transit and carpool options were provided, while others long for even more open road for solo cars.
Texas Department of Transportation officials simply recognize they are running out of room, cannot rely on toll lanes to curb congestion and need support from across the region to accelerate projects they are planning.
“This is about transportation real estate,” said James Koch, TxDOT Houston district planning director. “It’s just real estate out there. We are obviously not going to double the size of the facilities we have, so what do we do with the space we have.”