Fort Bend County advances funding for Texas Heritage Parkway, new emergency operations center

Update: The Fort Bend County judge's office provided more information about the site for the new emergency operations center. The story below, which originally published Oct. 22, has been updated.

Funding has been advanced for two transit projects in Fort Bend County. The Commissioners Court unanimously approved advancing $49 million in funding for the construction of Texas Heritage Parkway and advancing $1 million for site acquisition and relocation expenses related to a new emergency operations center.

A longtime proposed project in the Katy and Fulshear area, Texas Heritage Parkway will be a 6.4-mile, 200-foot-wide thoroughfare—with two lanes in each direction and a median—connecting the Westpark Tollway to I-10. Design plans also include roundabouts, landscaping and a trail system. Project funding will be provided by Fort Bend County, the city of Fulshear, the city of Katy and landowners.

In January, local officials said Texas Heritage Parkway was expected to begin construction in mid-2019. Construction is now projected to start in the next month or two, said Andy meyers, Fort Bend County Precinct 3 Commissioner, at the Oct. 9 Fulshear-Katy Area Chamber of Commerce event.

“We’ve been delayed a little bit, mainly because the last portion of it—we didn’t have the right of way,” he said.

Once crews break ground, Texas Heritage Parkway will take about 12-18 months to build, Meyers said.

Meanwhile, the county has been working on plans to build a new emergency operations center, overseen by the Fort Bend County Office of Emergency Management. According to the judge's office, the court is considering constructing a new facility at the existing EOC site located at 307 Fort St., Richmond.

Design details and construction costs are not available because the project is in the beginning states, according to the judge's office. In September, the court approved a resolution to advance $1.2 million in funding for the center’s design. No other details regarding the project have been revealed.

Texas Heritage Parkway to break ground in mid-2019
By Jen Para
Jen joined Community Impact Newspaper in fall 2018 as the editor of the Katy edition. She covers education, transportation, local government, business and development in the Katy area.


Here are the coronavirus data updates to know today in Fort Bend County. (Community Impact staff)
Fort Bend County reports 287 new coronavirus cases, one death over July 4th holiday weekend

A record 217 patients are being treated for the coronavirus in Fort Bend County general hospital beds as of July 6.

Pharmacist Emily Smith opens a cooler for a patient to place their self-swab coronavirus test at a Walmart drive-thru testing site in McKinney on June 29. (Shelby Tauber/The Texas Tribune)
Poll says Texans' hopes for quick return to pre-coronavirus life are fading

Texans remain focused on the coronavirus pandemic and are less optimistic about returning the state to normal quickly, according to polling by the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas.

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller recently backed a movement calling for the reopening of winery and distillery tasting rooms and brewery and brewpub taprooms. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Agriculture Commissioner joins voices calling for reopening of tasting rooms, taprooms

In a letter to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller said demand from distilleries and breweries provides an important revenue stream to the state's farmers.

State Fare Kitchen & Bar will open its second Houston-area location in Sugar Land on July 8. (Courtesy George Paez, State Fare)
State Fare Kitchen & Bar to open Sugar Land Town Square location July 8

State Fare Kitchen & Bar will serve lunch and dinner menus daily, plus weekday happy hour, weekend brunch and Friday and Saturday late-night options.

Fort Bend County official: Early voters 'turning out in record numbers’ for July 14 primary runoff

2020 primary runoff voter turnout totaled 5.66% for the first week of early voting when including in-person and mail-in ballots.

Sugar Land 95 activist Reginald Moore dies at 60

Moore may be best known for his work to raise awareness about the Texas prison system's convict-leasing system, which provided prisoners to plantation owners who labored on farms and in other industries.

The First Street Foundation's dataset includes a forecast models that anticipate the effects of climate change and sea level rise. (Screenshot via First Street Foundation)
Analysis: FEMA may be undercounting national total flood risk by as much as 70%

The new dataset includes an interactive Flood Factor dashboard that anyone can use to assess the risk of flooding over a 30-year period for any address.

Here are the latest coronavirus updates from Fort Bend County. (Community Impact staff)
With 131 new coronavirus cases reported July 2, Fort Bend County nears 4,000th case

Heading into the Fourth of July holiday weekend, Fort Bend County has seen a total of 3,999 coronavirus cases.

Houston fireworks display
Here’s how to celebrate Fourth of July across the Greater Houston area

Several Houston-area cities are still planning fireworks shows with drive-in or virtual components this Fourth of July.

Fort Bend ISD Superintendent Charles Dupre shared survey results and provided an update on the district's planning efforts for next school year during a virtual town hall July 1. (Claire Shoop/Community Impact Newspaper)
Fort Bend ISD shares survey results, latest plans for 2020-21 school year during July 1 town hall

Of the 18,000 parents who responded to a Fort Bend ISD survey, 43% said they were very comfortable or somewhat comfortable sending their children back to school for the 2020-21 school year.

Gov. Greg Abbott
Gov. Greg Abbott: Texans must wear masks in public starting July 3

"COVID-19 is not going away," Gov. Abbott said. "In fact, it is getting worse."

The Kemah Boardwalk will be open Fourth of July weekend. (Courtesy Kemah Boardwalk)
3 Houston-area amusement properties will be open Fourth of July weekend

The Kemah Boardwalk, Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier and Downtown Aquarium Houston are offering a joint weekend adventure pass for $29.99.