Concrete supply, delays stunt street rehab initiative

Some City Council districts saw higher numbers of miles of street repairs in fiscal year 2020-21, which officials said is because older projects rolled over from the previous year and because some projects were delayed.
Some City Council districts saw higher numbers of miles of street repairs in fiscal year 2020-21, which officials said is because older projects rolled over from the previous year and because some projects were delayed.

Some City Council districts saw higher numbers of miles of street repairs in fiscal year 2020-21, which officials said is because older projects rolled over from the previous year and because some projects were delayed.

In the inaugural address for his second term in January 2020, Mayor Sylvester Turner promised Houstonians would see “noticeable improvements” in the quality of city streets by the end of 2023.

By the end of his first year, however, many of the street rehabilitation projects planned throughout the city had been delayed.

“There were contractor staffing shortages and supply shortages, and in the districts where projects did get completed, it was because they were already underway,” Houston Public Works spokesperson Erin Jones said.

Project design also took longer than anticipated because the public works department began following a new standard that requires the department to repair sidewalks along street repairs, Houston Transportation and Drainage Director Veronica O. Davis told City Council members at a transportation committee meeting in June.

Under the mayor’s street rehabilitation initiative, each district City Council member was able to choose 4 lane miles to prioritize for safety improvements in fiscal year 2020-21.


As the city moves forward with the initiative, incomplete projects were rolled over to FY 2021-22, which began July 1, in addition to new projects, Jones said.
By Emma Whalen
Emma is Community Impact Newspaper's Houston City Hall reporter. Previously, she covered public health, education and features for several Austin-area publications. A Boston native, she is a former student athlete and alumna of The University of Texas at Austin.


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