Issues & Projects

West Houston Flood Control Forum Focuses on City/County Cooperation

The City of Houston’s Chief Resiliency Officer, Steve Costello, and the Harris County Flood Control District’s Executive Director, Russ Poppe, addressed WHA’s members at the West Houston Flood Control Forum. From SWAT (storm water action teams) to new reservoirs, the speakers presented an update on the state of flood control efforts and a vision for how to make significant improvements by working together. Please follow the link to the speaker’s presentations.

H-GAC Releases Greater West Houston Mobility Plan

December 2, 2015

The Houston Galveston Area Council released the final, formatted Greater West Houston Mobility Plan on December 2nd, 2015.  The West Houston Association is a stakeholder in the mobility plan along with the City of Houston, Energy Corridor, Gulf Coast Rail District, Harris County, Memorial City Management District, METRO, TxDoT, and Westchase District.  WHA will coordinate with stakeholders and HGAC on the next steps to turn planning into action.  If you have comments on the plan or would like WHA Mobility updates, please email Auggie Campbell at: acampbell@westhouston.org

WHA endorses Harris County, Fort Bend County, and Montgomery County bond referendums

Houston, Texas – October 27, 2015

The West Houston Association recently announced its support for the upcoming bond referendums for Harris County, Fort Bend County and Montgomery County. All three elections are set for Tuesday, November 3, 2015.

The Harris County $848 million bond package focuses on improving county roads and bridges. The bond issue includes $700 million is allocated to improve county roads and bridges, $60 million for parks and $64 million for flood control.

The Fort Bend County $98.6 million bond package targets expansions and updates to buildings and facilities throughout the county. The Fort Bend County Justice Center located in Richmond is planned to get $29.2 million. The bond issue also includes funding for construction of a Sheriff’s Office substation near Westpark Tollway and FM 1463.

Montgomery County’s $280 million bond issue will fund major roadway improvements in one of the fastest growing counties in Texas.

With a strong focus on public safety and infrastructure, the upcoming bond referendums for all three counties would enhance safety and improve mobility for area residents.

“Since its creation the Association has fully supported our area counties’ efforts to address the infrastructure demands of a rapidly growing metropolitan region,” said WHA Chairman Peter Houghton. “The ability to respond to growth demands by expanding the systems that serve our community is vital to maintaining the high quality of living our residents have come to expect. This includes not only transportation infrastructure, but parks, libraries and other services. We encourage the citizens of each county to vote for their respective referendums on November 3.”

The West Houston Association has a 36 year history of bringing new ideas to Greater West Houston in infrastructure, public policies and planning. The Association is a 501(c)(4) entity whose membership works for a better living and working environment for the 1.5+ million residents and 500,000 employees in Greater West Houston. We are property owners, major employers and related community interests combined to advocate for improved mobility, better infrastructure and a sustainable, quality of living environment for the region. The Greater West Houston area encompasses western Harris County, northern Fort Bend County, southwest Montgomery County and most of Waller County.

WHA Supports Proposition 7

July 28, 2015

The West Houston Association adopted a resolution in support of Proposition 7, a constitutional amendment for increased state funding for transportation. Proposition 7 will be on the November 3, 2015 ballot. The WHA encourages our membership to support the proposed amendment to address Texas’ transportation infrastructure needs.

The resolution, signed by WHA Chairman Peter Houghton, is available for download:  WHA Resolution in Support of Proposition 7

WHA Supports Katy ISD 2014 Bond Package 

September 23, 2014

The Board of Directors of the West Houston Association voted to endorse the Katy Independent School District’s $748 million bond election scheduled for a vote November 4, 2014.

“The Katy Independent School District is the driving force behind the unmatched quality of life enjoyed by residents in western Harris, northern Fort Bend and Waller Counties,” says Perri D’Armond, president and chief executive officer of the West Houston Association.  “West Houston has experienced phenomenal growth in recent years in both population growth and economic growth.  With that growth comes pressure for the District to uphold its standards of quality.  The proposed bonds that will be authorized by voters in this election will help the District maintain and improve the quality of education it offers the children in the West Houston area,” she said.

Katy ISD is proposing the issuance of $748.1 million in bonds for new schools, campus renovations and modifications, facility expansions, technology, safety and student activity facilities.  This will help Katy ISD address the needs of the current student enrollment and help it prepare for the additional 3,000 new students arriving every year.

The West Houston Association Board of Directors has passed a resolution in support of the Katy ISD 2014 Bond, and encourages all of our members to vote FOR the bond on November 4th. For more information on the Katy ISD Bond Package click here. A PDF of the resolution is available for download: WHA Resolution- KATY ISD 2014 BOND

WHA Supports Proposition 1

May 30, 2014

Proposition 1 is a constitutional amendment that will allow a portion of the revenue from the oil and natural gas production tax to be transferred to the State Highway Fund for the sole purpose of constructing, maintaining, and purchasing right of way for public roads. The proposed constitutional amendment is the first critical step towards fully funding our road infrastructure system.

The West Houston Association Board of Directors has passed a resolution in support of Proposition 1, and encourages all of our members to vote FOR Proposition 1 on November 4th. For more information on Proposition 1 click here.  A PDF of the resolution is available for download: WHA Resolution- Proposition 1

WHA ALERT

EPA has recently released a proposed Waters of the U.S. Rule that will redefine the landscape and scope of water regulation in the United States.  Going so far as to even contemplate the regulation of puddles, this proposed rule, once finalized, could have significant adverse effects on the real estate and development industry.

At a recent Wetlands Issue Forum, Sharon Mattox of Sharon M. Mattox, P.L.L.C., a recognized expert on Texas Wetlands and the Clean Water Act provided an overview of the proposed rule, its possible impacts, and possible paths forward.  Click Here for copy of her presentation.

WHA Opposes Anti-Mud SB/HB 14 in Texas Legislature

The Association strongly opposes SB/HB 14 and all of their derivates bills for the extremely negative impact on the ability of MUDs’ and local governments ability to finance infrastructure needed to support new growth.

WHA Supported HCC Bond Election passes

The Houston Community College plays a role of growing importance in our education system. It is important as well to the West Houston Association that HCC is focusing significant attention on West Houston through expanded facilities and educational programs at its Northwest College campuses. Their collaborative, bridge-building approach in higher education with the University of Houston and the University of Texas at Tyler brings significant benefit to both our business community and the public. These efforts will benefit from HCC’s newly authorized $425 million bond program.

WHA Supported Metro Nov. 6th Election

The WHA Board of Directors strongly supported the November 6 Metro referendum continuing Metro’s funding of roads to participating jurisdictions.

CITY OF HOUSTON EXPANDS OF DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE, CHAPTER 42

Changes to Chapter 42 expand to the Houston city limits,  alternative, urban building standards that now apply only to areas inside Loop 610. This in part allows reduced building line requirements along major thoroughfares, lot size performance standard, and reduced compensating open space. Also changed are guest parking requirements. Click on the following links for additional information (PDF). Changes are now being proposed to Houston Council.

CITY OF HOUSTON’S NEW Residential Buffering STANDARDS

Houston City Council adopted a new Residential Buffering Ordinance in December, 2011 which establishes buffers between single family and new commercial development. Exempted are developments along major thoroughfares, transit corridors and in major activity centers (MACs). Greater West Houston has three MACs: Energy Corridor, Westchase and Memorial City/Town & Country. The ordinance and presentation are available at this external website.

CURRENT MAJOR PROJECTS

West Houston Plan 2060

The West Houston Association is working on a forecast for 2060 to provide a Likely Land Use Scenario that shows the benefits of quality, sustainable growth strategies in Greater West Houston.

Quality Planned Development

Recognition of major residential and commercial developments that are meeting a “Higher Standard”.

Sustainability Stars

Recognition of sustainability practices by the public and private sectors in horizontal and vertical development.

WEST HOUSTON ASSOCIATION COMMITTEES

The Association has a number of committees and task forces addressing these and related issues.

Quality Planned Development | Rob Bamford, Chair

Regional Mobility | Marlene Gafrick, Chair

Flood Control & Drainage | Lee Lennard, Chair

Water Resources | Jack Miller, Chair

Parks, Recreation & Open Space | Chris Patterson, Chair

Sustainable Infrastructure | Jim Russ, Chair

Education and Workforce Development |  Carolyn Wolff Dorros, Chair