The Results of Midtown Houston’s 2022 Capital Improvement Survey

What needs more attention in Midtown Houston? Parks? Sidewalks? Mobility?

We gave people who live, work, and play in Midtown the opportunity to answer that question during our 2022 capital improvement survey last December. More than 500 people responded, which is about five times the response rate of previous years.

Who responded?

The survey respondents came from all over the neighborhood, 71 percent were male, 86 percent had no children, and the vast majority were residents or property owners in Midtown. Their answers will help the Midtown Redevelopment Authority (MRA) update its Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), Parks and Open Space Master Plan, and Cultural Arts Master Plan.

“Overall, the survey results are encouraging and supportive of our currently planned projects,” said MRA Director of Engineering and Construction Marlon Marshall. “There was more participation from a broader range of stakeholders compared to previous surveys, and the feedback received is valuable to help us prioritize projects and identify opportunities for future capital improvements. It is our goal to use the community’s input to implement projects which facilitate more economic development and enhance the overall quality of life in Midtown Houston.”

Parks, Mobility, and Development are top priorities

More than 57 percent of respondents rated the quality of life in Midtown as good or very good. That finding is consistent with previous years, as is the answer when people were asked where the MRA should focus its attention and spending. The top three answers were:

  1.       Parks and green space
  2.       Mobility
  3.       Mixed-use development

The respondents’ priorities are not surprising given that a substantial number of residents rank short walks to parks, schools, shops, and restaurants as very important to them. They want more trees, wider sidewalks with improved lighting, and additional dedicated bicycle lanes for easy, quick, and safe connections between neighborhoods.

Jobs, Technology also of concern

As one might expect in the rapidly changing 21st Century in which we live, technology and innovation are also top of mind. Increased access to free wi-fi, digital signage, and intelligent parking are critical to the future of Midtown according to the survey results. Think pavement sensors, cameras, or vehicle counting equipment that provide real-time information on parking availability and cost.

When it came to a question about jobs, more than 70 percent of people who responded ranked job growth as important. Drainage is another area residents are concerned about.

MRA’s previous CIP projects include the development of Midtown Park and Bagby Park, improvements to Baldwin Park and Glover Park, reconstruction of Bagby Street, and safety and aesthetic streetscape enhancements along Main Street and Holman Street near Houston Community College.

Currently, the reconstruction of Caroline Street is in progress, and additional improvements to Baldwin Park are underway. The next major project will be the reconstruction of Brazos Street.

You can find more information about MRA’s CIP projects here. Everyone is also welcome to attend the agency’s monthly board meetings. Here is a link to the 2022 meeting schedule. Right now, meetings are held electronically due to COVID-19 concerns. Each meeting agenda includes a link to the live stream.