Transportation

Study Looks At How To Make Houston’s Intersections Safer For Pedestrians And Cyclists

City officials and transportation advocates are visiting traffic hotspots to investigate whether road design is contributing to crashes.

After Mayor Sylvester Turner asked for the community’s help identifying the city’s most problematic intersections, the transportation advocacy group LINK Houston went through the data to find the worst spots for walkers and cyclists.

Now, a team of City officials and transportation advocates has hit the streets to see what specifically needs to be done to make those intersections safer for all users. 

One of the audit team members is Bike Houston Advocacy Director Jessica Wiggins, who said they’ll be looking at traffic counts along with the times of day that crashes occur. At each intersection they’ll also observe pedestrian signals, how long it takes to safely cross the street, and how cyclists use the roadway.

“I think that this is a step in the right direction for the city and I think it provides a lot of opportunities to educate people while we’re learning these things,” said Wiggins.

Wiggins also pointed out that some of the intersections they’re studying have fairly new construction, but they may not be built to fully support all modes of transportation.

“We need to re-address our design standards and start thinking at a policy level,” she said. “We have to think about the support that we’re providing for people and not blame people for incidents that are happening to them.” 

The road safety audit includes members of LINK Houston, Bike Houston, an engineer from the Houston Public Works Department, and a representative from the Federal Highway Administration.

Once the week-long audit is finished, the team members will put together a report with suggestions for improvements. The intersections in the audit include:

• Long Point & Gessner
• Fondren & West Bellfort
• Bissonnet & Wilcrest
• Shepherd & Allen Pkwy & Kirby
• Taylor & Spring & MKT Trail
• Hawthorne & Spur 527 & Holman

 

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Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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