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trymahjong

Lower Westheimer traffic Corridor Study

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Saw a presentation from COH at Neartown meeting--

A Community meeting for citizen input was held last week-- another meeting is proposed for February.

The "rebuilding" of corridor from Main street to Montrose is funded-- the remainder is pending.

Looks like 3 lanes of traffic instead of 4 lanes on Lower Westheimer is a go!

You can check out the website

http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/transportation/CMP/LowerWestheimer/ 

Edited by trymahjong
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Yes Lower Westheimer has its parking issues...... this may be why COH set up a special Parking Designated area( lead by MMD) that includes most of Lower Westheimer-- examination of the issue continues.........

 

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Wow this is really great news! I really like how Upper Kirby District widened sidewalks along Westheimer. It makes that area feel so much better! So when do improvements begin? 

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Lower Westheimer is narrow enough. The 4 lanes to 3 lanes set-up is good because the four lane set-up is/was useless in several cases (buses and larger trucks cannot stay in one lane). A turn lane would really help there.

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I get all the studies and meetings but damn we have to wait till 2020 for them to start construction on this? And West Alabama hasn't even started yet. What I don't get is when we have a massive event (Super Bowl) somehow the money finds a way to fix an issue quickly. 

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In sim city, if you can't afford to do something at the moment, you can either get a loan or wait until your tax revenue has gathered enough cash to do the project.  And you can only get 3 loans

I guess Houston used all 3 loans getting ready for the super bowl, and now needs to just save up money to upgrade the street

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Well from what I understand, Houston voted YES on a pay as you go system. While it's great to prevent additional debt, it slows down progress. I feel like I'll be dead by the time this city get's all the pieces in place lol

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I've been waiting for fifty five years for some of these things to come to fruition so don't hold your breath.

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1 minute ago, bobruss said:

I've been waiting for fifty five years for some of these things to come to fruition so don't hold your breath.

Thanks for the hope lol

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I mean if you want it to happen now you could lobby for a referendum letting the city issue as many bonds as it wants to get everything done now

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I doubt with a pension debt to figure out, that were going to be spending any extra on local road projects unless this money is guaranteed for this purpose only.

Besides if the pension bill doesn't pass the house this week it will be two years before they meet again.

And in the meantime the interests on this debt is going up and up. So unless we have a windfall or the bill passes

and we straighten out our debt issues things might move along a little slower for a while.

The bond agencies are already suggesting they may lower our rate.

I sure hope not.

In reality Westheimer, Alabama, and Richmond all need to be rebuilt. Just not at the same time.

Richmond would have rail and the road would be open now if the little handful of NIMBYS hadn't ranted so vociferously.

If you live in John Culbertson's district, don't vote for the blind visionary of science. He's a fool.

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John Culbertson is a complete moron. I fully understand representing your constituents, but he mainly represents himself and his pockets. It amazes me how he "struck a deal" with Metro to have commuter rail to Mo City yet he couldn't help Metro find a new route for the University Line. Yeah if you don't want rail in your neighborhood that's one thing, but to make sure no more rail projects are part of our transportation plan is the Republican thing to do. What a jerk for a lack of waaay better words. I did see some work beginning on West Alabama today. Getting a walkable connection to Upper Kirby from Midtown/Montrose is going to be great. 

Edited by j_cuevas713
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6 minutes ago, j_cuevas713 said:

It amazes me how he "struck a deal" with Metro to have commuter rail to Mo City

whatever happened to this deal?  Shouldn't we be hearing about plans or ballot items or something by now?

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It really is pathetic. Its a diversionary tactic to take our minds off of one thing and then forget about it.

A kind of bureaucratic slight of hand. Now you see it now you don't.

Sound familiar?

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I went to the presentation with perhaps 40 or so stakeholders. Nice presentation that indeed did show significant changes for the the Westheimer blocks from Montrose to Bagby. I had thought 4 lanes would be turned into 3 lanes but really it's only 2 lanes with an occasional left hand turn lane and "cut outs" for the metro buses to leave main lane when picking up riders. It seems that there are less bus stops and .... actual parking spaces on Westheimer itself.

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Thanks for the report trymahjong and also for taking the time to represent and get the scoop.

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4 hours ago, trymahjong said:

I went to the presentation with perhaps 40 or so stakeholders. Nice presentation that indeed did show significant changes for the the Westheimer blocks from Montrose to Bagby. I had thought 4 lanes would be turned into 3 lanes but really it's only 2 lanes with an occasional left hand turn lane and "cut outs" for the metro buses to leave main lane when picking up riders. It seems that there are less bus stops and .... actual parking spaces on Westheimer itself.

Do you have any documents or images you can post?

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I think Avondale Civic is hosting another presentation at their May 4 business meeting upstairs at The Womens home 7 pm

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Very interesting.  It looks like only a small amount of ROW acquisition would be needed and a fair amount of parking would be added.  While the net number of bus stops has only decreased slightly, they've all been moved to make them just past the intersections (in a dedicated pull-off) rather than just before, so they don't block right turns on red.

 

Yes, Westheimer loses a lane in each direction, but that lane is virtually unusable at present because the right half of the right lane as it is now can't handle cars (only trucks) due to potholes, and bigger vehicles can't stay in a lane the way it is now (because the lanes are narrow and Houston drivers are incompetent) making the lane next to them almost useless anyway.

 

I like this.  The new sidewalks will be HUGE, which is a big improvement compared to the narrow/nonexistent sidewalks right now, and for such a walkable area, that's important.

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So the second of westheimer between Waugh and Commonwealth (example map) will be one travel lane in each direction with a separate "pickup lane" for buses near bus stops)?  Am I reading that correctly?

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The drawings of the proposals run from Main to Shepherd, however, the CIP money ( already designated) that will fund the proposed improvements will probably only include Westheimer from Bagby to Montrose.

 

For myself, I am contacting the site and explaining that I don't want on street parking on that part of Westheimer---- I have faced plenty of snarlups with on street  parking down by the Empire cafe. I think a better alternative is the pull in parking on designated side streets.

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This all looks good.  They seem to be following how I drive down Westheimer - treating it as being one lane with left turn lanes (people stop in the left lane to turn, I go around them, but usually stay in the left hand lane because the right hand lane is awful)

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One statement at the presentation that left me sort of gobsmacked.

route 82 the Westheimer route has the largest ridership those buses are 10.7 feet wide not including the side view mirrors and how wide are the lanes on that part of Westheimer? 11 feet. So all the movers and shakers at Metro and COH couldn't project those two measurements might lead to dangerous traffic situations?

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4 hours ago, trymahjong said:

One statement at the presentation that left me sort of gobsmacked.

route 82 the Westheimer route has the largest ridership those buses are 10.7 feet wide not including the side view mirrors and how wide are the lanes on that part of Westheimer? 11 feet. So all the movers and shakers at Metro and COH couldn't project those two measurements might lead to dangerous traffic situations?

 

What kind of buses are they using that are 10.7 feet wide???  That seems unlikely.

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These changes are awesome! I have to hand it to the city on this one. It makes me even more excited for the changes on West Alabama. 

Edited by j_cuevas713

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4 hours ago, Houston19514 said:

 

That's what I thought.  I doubt anyone is building city buses that are 10.7 feet wide.

 

it doesnt matter if they are 8 or 10 feet wide....most seem to drive like they are 15 fee wide and take up two lanes OFTEN...especially at the curve etc...

i hate that they do that so i always try to steer clear of any buses on westheimer! 

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Sorry 

I was relating what someone at COH told me- I guess I wasn't skeptical since I've experienced quite a few times of the Metro bus being so close when I drive beside it that I get  "pushed" over the centerline into oncoming traffic- I learned my lesson and now NEVER drive side by side on that part of Westheimer.

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COH did a brief presentation at the Neartown Meeting. 

Biggest discussion was need for lighting to be lower, live oak and pin oak trees are not options that residents want, and parallel parking on westheimer that might or might not have parking meters.

 

the On street parking by the clothing resale apparently is given a by but the parallel parking in the 300 block met with a negative reaction. Instead many suggested that space be used for cafe tables chairs and planters. Pull in parking on side streets was also suggested as an alternative.

 

Also so learned that COH is actively seeking new businesses for that part of Westheimer that would put the storefront directly by street with parking behind.

 

public feedback is still being sought. Lowerwestheimerstudy.org

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They must have found my old posts on here from 2013 :) . I've been arguing for this design for a long time and am glad to see it coming

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On 4/25/2017 at 3:49 PM, gene said:

 

it doesnt matter if they are 8 or 10 feet wide....most seem to drive like they are 15 fee wide and take up two lanes OFTEN...especially at the curve etc...

i hate that they do that so i always try to steer clear of any buses on westheimer! 

I think part of the reason is that they, the bus drivers, are trying to maneuver over the cracked and potholed outer lanes on lower Westheimer. They also tend to drive a little too fast for that stretch of road. Once Westheimer goes to two lanes and the road is repaired (and instruct the drivers to slow down at curves), things will improve vastly!

Edited by dguet
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4 hours ago, dguet said:

That has to be the worst computer graphics presentation that I have seen in a very long time.  The 1990s are back on your Pentium PC.   Literally the "car" drives through tree branches at 20' and otherwise spends the entire time driving down the wrong side of the street.  Really.  Quite.  Miserable.

 

 

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On 5/14/2017 at 4:20 PM, UtterlyUrban said:

That has to be the worst computer graphics presentation that I have seen in a very long time.  The 1990s are back on your Pentium PC.   Literally the "car" drives through tree branches at 20' and otherwise spends the entire time driving down the wrong side of the street.  Really.  Quite.  Miserable.

 

 

It's just a rough animatic. What were you expecting Pixar?

Edited by j_cuevas713

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19 minutes ago, j_cuevas713 said:

It's just a rough animatic. What were you expecting Pixar?

I wasn't "expecting" anything.  And clearly, neither were the folks made this.

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On 5/14/2017 at 4:20 PM, UtterlyUrban said:

That has to be the worst computer graphics presentation that I have seen in a very long time.  The 1990s are back on your Pentium PC.   Literally the "car" drives through tree branches at 20' and otherwise spends the entire time driving down the wrong side of the street.  Really.  Quite.  Miserable.

 

 

 

Drivers through tree branches? Driving down the wrong side of the road? Must be playing GTA.

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Deadline for public input is May 31--

www.lowerwestheimerstudy.org

 

seems a lot of discussion on MontroseNextDoor site with worries over 4 lanes reduced to 2.

 

In my neighborhood metered street parking on Westheimer in front of Numbers gets gets residents angry but the idea of using that space for planters and cafe tables and chairs gets them laughing.

 

biggest thing I guess is that money that is available is only for basic improvements-- none of the pretty stuff like planters or lights.

 

The lighting part I guess could be configured by Centerpoint to add lower lights to existing light poles as has been done downtown......but will Centerpoint do it? I hope so-- from the PIP stats 2017  spring two rapes have occurred in 400 block Westheimer. Extra lighting might be a good thing to try.

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