County Leaders Vote On Controversial Grand Parkway Toll Road

Harris County Commissioners decide to proceed with plans to make a portion of the Grand Parkway a toll road. The vote comes after an earful of comments against the plan. Pat Hernandez has more.
The vote by Commissioners was not to start construction of the segment of the Grand Parkway, which would connect Katy to Highway 290. It would be a toll road under the control of the Harris County Toll Road Authority. It is currently in talks with TxDOT for rights to build the entire Grand Parkway.

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett says everyone has concerns about traffic and the best way to address it:

"I don't think the best way to approach it is to say well, we're just not going to build any more roads. I don't think that's realistic. We have to build more roads and more highways, and unfortunately right now, with the state of Texas being out of money, or saying they don't have the money to build free roads, we're in a situation where toll roads are going to be the norm."

Opposition came from the Citizens' Transportation Coalition. Chairwoman Robin Holzer told Judge Emmett and Commissioners that the toll road would be a disservice to people sitting in traffic congestion on 290:

"We would love to see county tax dollars spent on more pressing issues that affect taxpayers today, rather than building a road for hypothetical new people out there in the prairie."

Pat Hernandez. KUHF- Houston Public Radio News.
Bio photo of Pat Hernandez

Pat Hernandez

Reporter

Pat Hernandez is a general assignments reporter who joined the KUHF news staff in February of 2008...