Houston Tomorrow's Vision Zero Plan


Houston Tomorrow recently published a report called Vision Zero: Toward a Vision Zero Action Plan for the City of Houston. This report outlines their recommendations for eliminating traffic-related deaths and injuries across all modes of transit – motorists, cyclist, and pedestrians.

Read the full report by clicking here.

This comprehensive report is well-worth a read, and outlines how we can reduce the 13-County Houston traffic deaths from 667 per year to zero per year over the next decade. This number doesn't even include the several thousand of incapacitating injuries, or the even higher number of total crashes – most of which are completely preventable. Many cities worldwide and across the nation have Vision Zero reports, including other "car" cities such as Los Angeles. With the recent hit-and-run pedestrian death at Taft and Westheimer, this is something that affects all neighborhoods of Houston, including ours.

The report dives into initiatives that are already working hard for Houston such as Complete Streets, and also outlines several concrete ideas for how we can reduce traffic deaths and make streets safer. The over-arching strategies include the below four points, but again, there are many tactical methods of implementation outlined in the plan as well:

  1. Proper metrics of safety and usage, which accurately identify problem areas and track progress toward program goals.
  2. Education and enforcement of existing policies and laws.
  3. Introducing new policies and laws and enhancing existing ones to make conditions safer.
  4. Re-examining the underlying built environment and taking steps to reconstruct it to meet the safety needs of all users.

Please take 15 minutes to read the report as it's certainly a conversation worth having and plugging into.

– by Caroline Garry, with thanks to Kay Warhol for providing the tip!

36 Hours in Houston: A New York Times Article


Houston was recently featured in an article in the New York Times called 36 Hours in Houston, with Montrose (and places right by Winlow) featured – making us very proud. Featuring Common Bond, the Menil, our local antique shops and much more. It's a great read if you want to re-love this great city, or if you're entertaining out-of-town guests. Read it here.

– many thanks to Lindsey Aldrich and Ben Garry for the tip

24-Hour Pothole System

According to a recent announcement by the Mayor's office, starting in mid-January, potholes that are properly reported to the City's 311 Help and Information System will be assessed and addressed by the next business day. The goal is to effectively, efficiently and safely repair each reported pothole within a 24-hour period.

Per Council Member Ellen Cohen's City Hall Update, "the City of Houston has achieved a 97% success rate since the launch of the program despite a 1,000% increase in pothole reports. In the period from January 4th through noon on January 22nd, 1,212 citizen-reported potholes were filled by the next business day (including approximately 250 in District C) and 2,827 potholes were filled proactively by the Public Works and Engineering Department." The progress of the Pothole Program can be tracked atwww.HoustonPotholes.org.

Please contact 311 to report potholes by:

– information provided by the City of Houston

Houston City Council Unanimously Approves Establishing A TIRZ For Montrose

After many months of community meetings, stakeholder discussions and volunteer-based research by residents, the Houston City Council unanimously voted on Wednesday, December 9th to create a Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone, commonly known as TIRZ, for the Montrose area. The funds the TIRZ will generate will help Montrose repair and enhance its currently failing infrastructure.

This is great news for Montrose to address the "critical needs" we have related to infrastructure. At many of our general meetings, we've talked about how our streets are currently failing. This Montrose TIRZ will facilitate completion of infrastructure projects much more quickly than the City's Capital Improvement Plan and, ultimately, this Montrose TIRZ will lead to more City funds being freed up for the CIP projects to be prioritized/completed elsewhere. This is a net gain.

We are excited that the goals of the Montrose TIRZ include projects around:

  1. Infrastructure improvements
  2. Pedestrian-friendly and cyclist-friendly environments through the reconstruction of streets, infrastructure and sidewalks, with lighting and streetscape amenities
  3. Facilitation of completion of transit corridors
  4. Economic development and growth
  5. Reinforcement of pedestrian-attractive retail developments and mixed-use developments along the major corridors
  6. Parks and related amenities
  7. Workforce housing

Winlow Place has been involved significantly throughout this year-long process, and along the way it became very clear that Montrose streets don't just serve Montrose – our transit corridors are the day-to-day work horses for commuter traffic to get people to jobs, schools and homes. This TIRZ is a much-needed practical solution for our needs – today andtomorrow – and we are so pleased that it passed unanimously.

Many thanks to you all for the conversations throughout the past year.

– by Caroline Garry

The City Needs Your Input for the Design of the Reconstruction of Dunlavy

Be Sure to Submit Your Comments to the City by December 15, 2015 Regarding the Reconstruction of Dunlavy

On November 18th, the City Public Works and Engineering Department and the Planning Department provided a joint-presentation on new bicycle facilities on Dunlavy between Allen Parkway and Richmond; and the scheduled Dunlavy reconstruction between Allen Parkway and West Gray and between Richmond Alabama. Their reconstruction efforts will include new roadway, storm drainage, sewer infrastructure and new bicycle facilities. The segment of Dunlalvy adjacent to WinlowPlace itself is not currently under design, but they are looking for our input as they consider the entirety of Dunlavy and the neighborhood's needs. This is the "Middle Segment" between Peden and West Main.

If you missed the meeting, please review the presentation, linked here, yourself. They are specifically looking for comments regarding the configuration of bike lanes, pedestrian amenities and on-street parking. Anything else is fine, too, but pay particular mind to those items. It is likely that, when funded, the Winlow Place segment of Dunlavy would be modeled more similarly to the Southsegment, which in the presentation is Richmond to West Alabama.

The main thing to note is that they need your comments and input by DECEMBER 15th.
This handout has those details, but you can also just email comments to pweplanning@houstontx.gov.


For the North Segment, from Allen Parkway to Peden, they plan to:

  • Reduce number of lanes to accommodate a continuous turn lane
  • Improve signals and turn lanes at intersections 
  • Replace storm and water system 
  • Improve pedestrian realm 
  • Improve bike facilities

Possible configuration of North Segment is shown in the illustration to the right.


For the South Segment, West Main to Richmond, they plan to:

  • Create dedicated parking area
  • Improve signals and turn lanes at Richmond
  • Replace storm, water and sewer systems as necessary
  • Improve pedestrian realm 
  • Add bike facilities

Possible configuration of South segment, which is likely the one that might be most like what we'll eventually have, is shown in the illustration to the right.

Note that this is unrelated to the Major Thoroughfare and Freeway Plan Proposed Amendments that we fought for with the City. Those were specifically related to leaving Dunlavy with its current 60-foot right of way (so that the City would not "take" an additional 70 feet), as well as reclassifying Dunlavy from a 4-lane Major Collector to a 2-lane Major Collector. With the new classification, which we won, Public Works & Engineering is still able to "design" new street configuration within that given (60-foot) right-of-way. This may include, it sounds like, new bike lanes which after hearing public input at many meetings, might be a great thing pending the exact design.

Again, the main thing to note is that they need your comments and input by December 15, 2015.
Read the presentation, linked here, yourself. Note that This handout has information for how to submit feedback, but you can also just email comments to pweplanning@houstontx.gov.

– by Caroline Garry