This is a sequel to yesterday's post about the North Houston Highway Improvement Project. The first expenditures on Segment 2 of the project got the go-ahead today, despite strong opposition from advocacy groups and Near Northside residents whose neighborhoods will be affected.
Only a few people spoke in favor of the NHHIP; dozens including Gallery Furniture entrepreneur "Mattress Mack" McIngvale, spoke against it. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo and Houston City Councilmember Dwight Boykins offered motions to delay the vote, which was all the crowd was requesting. But a majority of the Transportation Policy Council had already made up its collective mind to spend the first $100 million dollars toward what McIngvale called "the $7 Billion Boondoggle."
Hidalgo cast the only Yes vote on her motion to delay. The rest of the TPC is ready to let the bulldozers roll.
Here are a few links to reports in local media sources:
“This plan is not a good plan for the city of Houston and represents the past and not the future of transportation in the City of Houston,” former district judge and Metropolitan Transit Authority board member Dwight Jefferson said, noting how prior freeway projects—including I-45—cut large gashes in black and Latino communities.
“The time has come to say no more,” Jefferson said in a fiery speech that drew loud applause. “No more communities dissected, no more families displaced, no more businesses sacrificed.”