The Woodlands, Energy Corridor District to pursue park and ride by end of year
Park and ride services from The Woodlands currently operate from several locations, including Sawdust Road. (Courtesy The Woodlands Township)
Continuing a process that began in January 2020, The Woodlands Township and the Energy Corridor District released a joint statement Jan. 28 that the entities will pursue a new park and ride route by the end of 2021.
The route would serve commuters in both directions from the Energy Corridor near Hwy. 6 and I-10 to The Woodlands, but since many people are still working from home, the timeline is not immediate, officials said. Other routes served by The Woodlands Township park and ride include downtown Houston and the Museum District.
As Community Impact Newspaper previously reported, the matter first came up at a January 2020 township meeting, when officials accepted an arrangement to fund 50% of the local project share in a three-year pilot program.
In the news release, the township stated it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the corridor district to establish the pilot commuter bus service.
According to the release, the two entities will work to identify the route, stops, schedules and fares alongside the ongoing pandemic concerns.
Funding for the project would be provided in part through a Congestion Management and Air Quality grant from the Houston-Galveston Area Council, which will provide 80% of the funds necessary to operate the program, according to the township. A local share funding partnership between The Woodlands and the Energy Corridor will cover the rest, which according to the information from the township in 2020 would amount to an annual average of about $74,000 for the township annually.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic changed commuter habits, about 1,000 people commuted between The Woodlands and the corridor, according to the township. The release stated the number of employees returning to their offices would be one consideration for when the service will be implemented.