TEI led preliminary engineering to redesign 12 downtown blocks of Bagby Street in Houston. The corridor is lined with civic and cultural institutions, including City Hall, Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, the Downtown Aquarium, and several parks. TEI engaged the Stakeholder Advisory Committee who established a bold vision to rebuild Bagby Street as a walkable, urban signature street, while calling for a safety-focused design addressing mobility for all users.
TEI developed four corridor design alternatives which explored different roadway geometries and alignments. Each option included a high-comfort bicycle facility, as recommended in the City’s Bike Plan. TEI analyzed traffic operations for the 12 signals along the corridor to assess viability of each alternative with projected traffic volumes. This analysis also considered geometric impacts from the IH 45 North Highway Improvement project nearby. The team developed drainage and other utility recommendations to meet current City standards.
After the client and stakeholders evaluated the alternatives, TEI designed conceptual schematics of the Preferred Alternative incorporating favored elements from each:
- Narrowing the roadway from a typical five-lane cross-section to a three-lane roadway;
- Utilizing the increased back-of-curb space to create wider sidewalks and increased landscaping; and
- Incorporating a high-comfort, two-way bicycle trail at sidewalk level, along the east side, with connections to both proposed and existing bikeways, to strengthen the bike network and connect destinations.
TEI developed planning level cost estimates and implementation strategies. Final design began in May 2018. The Downtown Redevelopment Authority committed $25 million to the project, and construction completed in 2021. In 2022, the American Planning Association (APA) Texas chapter honored this Bagby project with its Gold Award for transportation planning.