During its June 12 monthly meeting, the board of directors for the Energy Corridor Management District agreed to extend the district’s mission for another 10 years. The renewal follows petitions of support by property owners that were accepted during a May 22 public hearing on the issue.
Proposed Energy Corridor District transit improvements[/caption]
The Texas Legislature founded the district as Harris County Improvement District No. 4 in 2001. The district was formed in large part to manage the I-10 lane expansion that began that year.
“Our current plan expired at the end of next year, but there’s so much planning that had to be done [residents petitioned to renew early],” district spokesperson Mark Klein said. “We originally had a five-year plan. That was renewed for 10 years, and now we’ve renewed another 10 years.”
Among the district’s top priorities is managing transportation mobility projects such as a new Energy Corridor Circular rush hour mass transit line that will run from the Addicks Park and Ride to destinations along Park Row, North Dairy Ashford Road, Eldridge Parkway, Memorial Drive and Hwy. 6.
Another long-range project is the Park Row Drive extension that will build a bridge over Langham Creek to connect the road from Eldridge Parkway to the forthcoming MD Anderson and Worthing Companies development that is collectively known as Central Park.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District issued a permit to complete the Park Row Drive project last September, said Isidro Reyna, USACE deputy chief of public affairs, in an emailed statement.
“The Corps’ Real Estate and Operations divisions are in the process of completing a report of availability which will allow the Energy Corridor Management District to complete construction of Park Row Drive. The final step to this process is finalizing a memorandum of agreement,” Reyna said in the statement.
Both Reyna and Klein said there is no timetable for completing that memorandum. An earlier phase of construction, which extended Park Row Drive from Addicks Park and Ride to Central Park West Boulevard, also went through the Corps approval process and was completed last year, Klein said.
Now that the district’s mission has been extended, the Harris County Appraisal District will set an appraisal rate for the district in October, Klein said.
He said the new rate is expected to bring in approximately $49.8 million in assessment revenue and will be divided between transportation projects, ongoing maintenance and security and public safety efforts.
“That’s the real advantage [to having a management district]—making sure projects are done,” Klein said.