West Houston Homeowners Demand Relief From Rush Hour Traffic
by: Edel Howlin and Conner Clifton, November 21, 2012 9:11:00 am
Homeowners in the Westwick area rallied together to raise awareness of the problematic traffic situation the neighborhood is experiencing. During high traffic times, anywhere between 3,300 to 6,000 vehicles exit I-10 and cut through the neighborhood to shave some time off of their drive time commute, and residents have had enough.
Bill McCurdy has been a resident of Westwick for nearly 30 years. He says it’s only a matter of time before someone is seriously injured.
“Our car has been hit five different times, and one night I was out there and I almost got hit. I was pinned against the car because the street is so narrow and the cars come by fast and heavy, and we’ve got to get some help with this street or someone is going to get hurt. I’m surprised it hasn’t happened yet.”
Residents have gone before the Houston City Council before and asked for help to find a solution. Some have even asked for additional speed humps to be constructed in the neighborhood, but the state of Texas suspended funding for speed humps in the City of Houston in 2009.
Since then, the city has worked with the neighborhood to find alternatives, but the results didn’t seem to take. This is Robert Avary, another Westwick homeowner.
“The City of Houston installed a one way device at the end of Wickchester. It was up for probably less than two weeks. That device, in our opinion, in our collective opinion, did the most to give us back our subdivision. Because the businesses to the west of the neighborhood threatened a lawsuit, the director of PWE authorized posthaste to have the device removed. Nothing has happened since then.”
Councilwoman Helena Brown, who represents the Westwick neighborhood, agrees that the neighborhood is no longer safe for the people living there.
“I’ve seen many instances where they can do pretty much anything, but there are studies that they do and really there’s fears of people coming back and having issues with them and whatever they do, but I think that should not be on their mind. Constituent service needs to be on their mind, making sure that the citizens of Houston are not fearing for their lives, lives of their children, their property. I mean, people are knocking into vehicles, knocking into homes and the like. I think that’s not a good quality of life to be providing for our citizens.”
Brown hopes that the issue will make it onto Mayor Annise Parker’s agenda sometime in the future.