Years in the planning [it has often called a once-in-a-generation construction project], the North Houston Highway Improvement Project (NHHIP) will be re-building over the next 18 years and spending almost $10billion!
Danny Perez of Texas Department of Transportation gives a beginning timeline: "We'll start on the southern-most part of the project in the next two years (2024-2025) and we're looking to continue that progress all the way up to 2030." Perez says the improvements will serve many purposes for present and future drivers. "It's not just for the current growth process - but for the future population growth to come. We have some infrastructure that dates back to the 1950s and 1960s. Also - this will improve mobility during hurricane and other evacuation situations."
Two lanes of I-45 from downtown north to Greenspoint will be added and existing interstate and interchanges will be improved. Perez reminds us it's a long stretch of highway that needs all kinds of fixing. "We want to improve for folks who travel along I-45 --- which is one of the most congested highways in the entire state of Texas! Not only are we improving mobility in the downtown area --- but also improving travel for folks who travel further north, like to The Woodlands!"
Some of the areas - including an area by the George R. Brown Convention Center - will allow for greenspaces or caps over the freeway. Along the way, the 2027-2031 period is when many of the projects will become active work zones which are already stressing commuters years ahead of time!
photo: Courtesy of Texas Department of Transportation