Sustainability Series: Texas’ First Greenroads Project

Construction of a new sustainable project in the heart of Houston is coming to a close. Under the leadership of the Midtown Redevelopment Authority, changes have taken place along Bagby Street, from St. Joseph Parkway to Tuam Street.

The Bagby Street Reconstruction project is on track to become the first Greenroads certified Project in Texas. This means the Midtown Greenroads project was designed to meet a series of sustainability requirements in addition to ease of use for the many pedestrians who frequent this area. Greenroads is a points-based rating system to certify roadway and transportation infrastructure projects. The system has 11 requirements that must be fulfilled before a project can be considered a Greenroad certified.

Houstonians can expect a more pedestrian-oriented street with enhancements to pedestrian walkway, landscaping and lighting, and changes in road infrastructure. Reconstruction of Bagby Street also includes improvements in roadway pavement, storm sewers, waterlines, and sanitary sewer utilities. Pedestrians should notice an increase in shade along sidewalks through added tree canopies. Also, pedestrian areas have been updated with an increase in seating and green space for more social gatherings.

Bagby Street is a great place to get out and have lunch in a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere. With several dining options, you will not be disappointed.

Take a look at some of the major sustainable features:

Flyash Concrete

Photo credit: Chamiya Bruner

Flyash is a byproduct of coal, and is often made into concrete to divert material from the waste stream where it can end up in a landfill threatening our environment. Research has shown a decrease in CO2 emissions when flyash concrete is used (like removing 1000 cars off the road for a month!) Flyash concrete is a stronger concrete and has low water content making its surface cooler and more resistant to cracking.

LED Lighting

Photo Credit: Chamiya Bruner

Photo Credit: Chamiya Bruner

Photo credit: Chamiya Bruner

Better lighting will be seen along Bagby Street for pedestrians through LED bulbs and more lighting sources. LED bulbs reduce greenhouse gas emissions by using less energy. They also last longer than conventional lighting sources.

Rain Gardens

Photo credit: Chamiya Bruner

Rain gardens help to reduce water runoff by capturing rainwater and slowly soaking it into the ground. Rainwater is captured in the rain gardens where it is held, filtered, and then sent through a drain. This gives a cleaner water and reduces the rush of large storms. Rain gardens cover about 40% of the Bagby Street project.

 

About the Author:

This past summer as a One World intern, Chamiya explored our city and applied her studies in order to bring us a series of seven distinct blogs. Chamiya Bruner is a junior at Oklahoma State University where she majors in environmental studies. She hopes to obtain a career in sustainability and development upon graduation.

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3 responses to “Sustainability Series: Texas’ First Greenroads Project

  1. Pingback: The new Bagby Street should be a point of pride for Houston |·

  2. Pingback: Complete Streets coming – Off the Kuff·

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