In Houston, Housing Loses Out to Freeways

TxDOT plans to demolish hundreds of apartments for its interstate widening project despite local calls to preserve the buildings as affordable housing.

1 minute read

February 17, 2023, 8:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

View of Houston freeways and downtown skyline in the background against blue sky with white clouds

Trong Nguyen / Houston freeways

Despite decades of criticism from community groups and local leaders, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) just won’t let go of its highway expansion dreams. The department plans to push ahead with its $85 billion plan to demolish homes, businesses, and neighborhood amenities in favor of larger roads.

In an article originally published by Strong Towns and republished by Streetsblog USA, Asia Mieleszko describes the saga, which pits state transportation officials against local politicians, residents, and business groups. Although many local stakeholders have spoken out against road expansion, the agency has fought to move forward with its plans.

Last year, the agency moved to demolish hundreds of apartments in Houston as part of its Interstate 45 expansion plans, despite a federal freeze on the project. “Nick Arcos of LINK Houston, a nonprofit advocating for a robust and equitable transportation network, remarked that the loss of centrally located housing can be especially devastating to lower-income communities, in particular those who rely on transit.”

Thursday, February 16, 2023 in Streetsblog USA

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