Houston: Tanner Road to Addicks Dam Trail: Need to contact frequent users
I am working with a group, the "Squeaky Wheels", to re-establish the connection between Tanner Road (about 1/2 way between North Eldridge Parkway and Brittmoore) and the Addicks Dam in unincorporated Harris County, Texas ("northwest Houston"). The original post was in June 2013. This is now a status update as of February 2015.
The project consists of two segments due to funding, landowner and regulatory issues. See attachment.
The Addicks-Tanner Connector Trail (“Connector”) will be funded and built by Harris County Precinct 4 Parks on a right-of-way to be obtained on a private property. It will be about 1000’ overall length and will begin at Tanner Road and end at the north end of the Addicks Dam spillway, which shows up as the “Addicks Dam Road” on Google maps.
The Tanner Sidewalk Trail (“Sidewalk”) will be funded by two of the local MUDs (Municipal Utility District) and will run about 700’ along Tanner Road to the traffic signal and pedestrian crosswalk at Ginger Ponds.
The project status as of February 14, 2015:
- Harris County Parks will design the Connector Trail in 2015 and apply for the Corps of Engineers permit, among others.
- The MUDs have funded the design of the Tanner Sidewalk Trail, which will proceed in coordination with progress on the Connector Trail design.
- We expect the Corps of Engineers process to be lengthy. Realistically, construction will not occur before 2016.
We currently have over 150 supporters identified. We would like to continue contact with users or potential users of the trail to communicate progress directly. This project is of particular interest to cyclists and hikers in the subdivisions Lakes on Eldridge, Lakes on Eldridge North, Twin Lakes, Eldridge Park, and Villages at Lakepointe as well as the business parks Brittmoore Park and Brittmoore-Tanner.
If you would support and use this connection and you aren’t already getting email updates, please contact email@example.com.
Last edited by flangehead; 02-14-15 at 06:12 AM.
Reason: Update status of project as of February 14 2015
Please note project status update. We're getting really close, and mid-August is when we'll need letters of support. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are no bike lanes on Kirkwood or Dairy Ashford, and given the state of each of those roads (they look like a WWII European city after an Allied carpet bombing), I don't think there will ever be many cyclists on them. I live off Dairy Ashford and I only ever see a couple people riding on the sidewalks.
I think a good project would be to connect the THP Extension that goes under I-10 to Addicks Res to the path to the east that ends between Conoco and Shell - which looks like connects to your path coming down the east side of the res. That would add a bunch of miles to the already 50 you can do if you cycle the entire THP/GBP/Mason Creek connection.
Thanks for the opportunity to clarify the current state and also the possible future state.
Originally Posted by the sci guy
From Clay Road south to I-10 in this area there are 4 well-drained routes: Highway 6, North Eldridge Parkway, top of Addicks Dam and Brittmoore. Hwy 6 and Eldridge are high speed arterials. Brittmoore will be a good paved city street once the current construction is complete.
The only non-motorized route is the top of Addicks Dam, which is gravel. Though very passable with hybrid or wider tires, it is not appropriate for most road bikes. (It can be muddy immediately after heavy rains.)
Under current conditions (July 2014) the routes to Terry Hershey Park from Clay Road range from completely off-road to bike-lane-in-poor-condition:
a) As you mention, the gravel road on top of the dam extends from Clay Road (lift-over gates) to Eldridge (bike gates open) just north Dairy Ashford. (Dairy Ashford stops as a west-bound segment at Eldridge.) This is a grade crossing and on the west side of Eldridge there is a dirt ramp down to the concrete trail that runs between Terry Hershey Gazebo and the Addicks Park and Ride. This route involves no cycling parallel to motorized traffic but does have grade crossings at Clay and at Eldridge. The sight lines at the Eldridge crossing can be a bit limited, especially when crossing from west to east. I’m always very careful crossing here. Using the Geller classification scheme, this route could appeal to “Interested but Concerned” cyclists.
b) The second alternative, which involves using the bike lanes on Dairy Ashford from I-10 to Eldridge, involves descending from the top of the dam at Chatterton and using the trail at the base of the dam, terminating at Dairy Ashford between Shell and Conoco-Phillips. The bike lane along Dairy Ashford is relatively clean and smooth, and the traffic speed in this segment feels less aggressive to me. This provides commuter access for those two businesses. Proceeding west, a cyclist can cross at the Eldridge/Dairy Ashford light and pass north and west of the hotel and then reach a sidewalk at the I-10 access road that then connects to the Terry Hershey trail. Using the Geller classification scheme, this route could appeal to “Enthused & Confident” cyclists.
c) The City of Houston has an established bike route along Kirkwood from the trail at the foot of Addicks Dam to Westheimer. The 4’ wide (maximum) bike lanes were not well designed (paint on existing roadbed) to begin with and are in bad repair (unpassable sections, debris and vegetation, and water ponding). In all fairness, the street itself isn’t much better. In my opinion this route is only appropriate for cyclists a) with fat tires, as there are a lot of cracks, b) good front/rear situational awareness (mirror), and c) who are willing to take the lane. Many people would consider this infrastructure worse than nothing. When I have to use this route I take the lane as my primary position and then use the passable sections of the bike lane for “catch-and-release”.
I would agree that the current state of affairs is not ideal. However, getting better accomodations for non-motorized traffic will necessarily be a process of “a little bit here, a little bit there” with a vision to link up in the future.
Are you aware of the “West Houston Trails Master Plan” which is available (145 MB) at West Houston Trails Master Plan - Energy Corridor District - Energy Corridor District? This is the vision of how this area could stitch together smaller, achievable projects. For example, the Patterson/North Eldridge Spine Trail (page 31) envisions the Eldridge crossing you mentioned, linking the east and west trails with paved off-road trail. Similarly, the Wycliff Highline Spine Trail (page 58) could use the powerline right-of-way agreement recently reached to provide a very good route combining trails and quiet residential streets to get from Clay Road to Terry Hershey.
The proposed Addicks/Tanner Connector trails is “a little bit here” that we think is achievable in the near future. It can be used immediately, and as other infrastructure develops in the area, it will become more valuable.
Thanks for the terrific explanation of what's going on! I am not sure my wife and I would be prime candidates as advocates for the Tanner Road reconnection. We are not local, we live in WestU, we are relatively timid (elderly) riders, and we have not yet ridden the Addicks Dam roads. We do very much enjoy the multi-use trails in Terry Hershey and George Bush parks and ride them often. More than once, I have looked longingly at the underpass under I10 from the Terry Hershey Gazebo, but lacked the confidence to try it. (We ride cyclocross bikes which are somewhere between road and mountain bikes in off road capability, probably fairly similar to a hybrid.)
Bottom line, feel free to use us if you think it helps, but I want you to be aware of factors that may limit our value.
If it is not too much trouble, I would be delighted if you could post a link to the Geller classification scheme. FYI, I write a cycling blog which among other things discusses cycling in Houston: The Zombie Cyclist
Hey Zombie, the THP extension that goes under I-10 is fully paved, you have nothing to be timid about.
If you park in the lot where the Gazebo is on Memorial, ride up behind it towards I-10, then there will be a path to the right that goes over a little bridge through some trees. Hang a left after the bridge and follow the path - you'll go by another parking lot, under I-10, and then the path bears to the left along the Reservoir.
Alternatively, if you're already in THP, when you get to the part where you have to go over the Eldridge Parkway bridge, go straight up the path that is along Memorial Mews St, and that will connect to the same path I just mentioned above. (Look at Google Maps to see what I mean).
I've done it dozens of times and it's a good little way to get some extra miles - and it's pretty much flat, too.
I also blog about cycling in Houston, and other stuff too. I just posted about about my rebuilding of an '84 Raleigh to commute on.
flangehead, I believe we met at WL1 this morning. I would be able to use this route instead of having to take Eldridge from Tanner to I-10. It would add a few extra miles to my commute but will be well worth it to get me off of Eldridge.
I'm above 290 and have taken Britmore down to Clay to use the Damn to get to the Terry Hershey North extention at the bend in the damn road.
As in This ride
Bike Ride Profile | 30 miles near Houston | Times and Records | Strava
On the West side it's a lot harder trying to get north and south than east and west. I have seen the Bike Super highway project and am only 3 blocks from the corridor that will parallel beltway 8. http://usa.streetsblog.org/2014/07/2...tility-network
Last edited by Fangowolf; 09-12-14 at 05:15 PM.
Zombie, sorry to be so slow; I work bikeforum in fits and starts. Here is a link to the Geller categories: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/trans...44597?a=237507
Also, I've posted a project update below.
Lastly, nice blog.
Addicks-Tanner Trail Progress September 16, 2014
We have made considerable progress in the last few months on the Addicks-Tanner trail projects.
The project scope has now been set, and consists of the Addicks-Tanner Connector to be built by Harris County and the Tanner Sidewalk Trail from the Ginger Ponds east to be funded by the community. See the attached project brief for a map and more description. We believe this is an achievable project. Other separate projects in the area in the future are possible, but this specific project is now limited to this scope.
From a schedule standpoint, the long-lead item is approval from the Corps of Engineers which cannot be obtained until the detailed design of the Connector is done. Realistically, construction probably could not begin before 2016.
Harris County has agreed to perform the Connector design if the elected officials from the local community demonstrate support for the project. The community bodies are involved in the process. There are a number of design and equity details that have not yet been resolved and are being worked in the coming months to reach a funding agreement for the Sidewalk, which will demonstrate to the County the community support for the overall project.
If this is a facility that you would use, please contact me. If you live in a nearby subdivision, please let me know which as that helps us demonstrate your support to the appropriate community body (HOA, MUD).
I live in Sherwood Oaks just north of the city water plant and my house backs on to the Addicks dam. It's a great location for biking. Anyway, I just discovered this thread by googling "Tanner Bike Trail group" after it was referred to in a reply I got from the Corps of Engineers to a question I asked at the Oct 29th Addicks and Barker Dam Safety Program Update public meeting. FYI, here is my question and the response I received from the USACE Public Affairs person:
QUESTION: Would like more hike/bike trails please! Access to the north end of the Addicks dam from Tanner would be excellent.
ANSWER: USACE supports the use of the reservoirs for recreational purposes and has granted recreational easements to the City of Houston, Harris County Precinct 3 and Fort Bend County for various park facilities and hike and bike trails. We look forward to working with the Tanner Bike Trail group on their proposed project which will provide access to the north end of Addicks Dam from Tanner as well as other groups that may approach USACE for a recreational easement for parks and hike and bike trails at the Addicks and Barker dams.
Note updated February 14, 2015 for current status.