TxDOT, HGAC To Start New Houston-Area Traffic Survey

If you're out shopping or conducting other business over the next few months and someone randomly approaches you and starts asking questions about where you came from and how you got where you needed to be, don't be alarmed. It's just part of a new survey to help planners figure out where new roads should be built, and where existing roads should be upgraded. David Pitman has more.
The Texas Department of Transportation is partnering with the Houston-Galveston Area Council to conduct what they call the Workplace Travel Survey. Starting next month, various business will be asked to allow third-party interviewers to ask their employees and customers questions like...

"How they traveled, what route they took to get to this location."

Alan Clark is the Director of Transportation for the HGAC.

"We'll be interested in if they traveled with other people, were they carpooling? Did they come in a particular kind of vehicle? We're particularly interested in if they used transit or walked to that location."

The responses are kept confidential, and won't be used to identify anyone. Clark says these surveys are really the only way transportation officials can get the kind of information they need.

"Its purpose is to really help us decide where and how to invest in highway facilities, transit facilities, improved sidewalks and bicycle trails — any number of different uses."

This is the first traffic survey of businesses in the Houston area in nearly 15 years. The survey is expected to cost $900,000, which will come from money already set aside in TxDOT's planning budget. It'll take about a year to complete. The results will be used in a new long-range traffic plan for Harris and adjoining counties that the HGAC hopes to finish by the end of next year.
Bio photo of David Pitman

David Pitman

Local Host, Morning Edition

The one question David hears most often isn't "What is it like to work for an NPR member station?" or "Have you ever met Terry Gross?" (he has)...