HCTRA suspends Grand Parkway project development

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In the ongoing battle between far North Harris County residents and the Grand Parkway project, the Harris County Toll Road Authority has suspended all of its development efforts:

In a letter to Commissioners Court dated Sept 21, 2005, Art Storey, PE, wrote:

“Dear Court Members:

As I have reported before, TxDOT has suggested that Harris County join them in a general agreement for sharing toll road revenues when HCTRA constructs a toll road in TxDOT right-of-way or on an alignment within the TxDOT highway system. With the support of county staff and our toll road legal and investment consultants, I have been working on such an agreement for several months.

The negotiations have been difficult, and more time and effort is needed before we can expect to reach agreement. Accordingly, I have instructed HCTRA to stop work on so- called “future” projects until either such an agreement is in hand or the requirement for one is eliminated. Projects affected include the Grand Parkway and the U.S. 290 corridor (Hempstead Road).

And Art Storey wrote this to HCTRA Director Mike Strech:

Please instruct our staff and consultants to suspend immediately all work on the proposed Grand Parkway. That means surveying, right-of-way definition, schematic designs, conversations, everything. We will resume from this point (or from some other one) if and when we have successfully negotiated an agreement with TxDOT to do so. I will inform eommissioners Court accordingly at their next meeting on September 27th.”

The suspension may only be temporary, but we’ll take it.

Thanks to Connie for the heads up — and Connie also received a letter from Grand Parkway Association Executive Director David Gornet in which he admitted that residential and commercial development continues at a brisk pace along the proposed Grand Parkway F-2 route with little regard for transportation planning.

Apparently developers haven’t been consulting with (soon-to-be-outta-there) state Sen. Jon Lindsay.


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Anne Linehan is a co-founder of blogHOUSTON.