Major Agreement Ushers In A New Era of Cooperation

Press Release New Metro Going Places

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Release Date:          May 18, 2015

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The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO) is the region’s largest public transit provider, offering safe, reliable and affordable transportation services about 370,000 times per day. METRO operates more than 1,200 buses, and METRO's New Bus Network is coming soon. For a good picture of where we are headed see our new system map. METRO is currently expanding its 13-mile Red Line with two new lines under construction. Other METRO services include: Star Vanpool, METROLift, HOV lanes, HOT lanes, Bikes-on-Buses/Trains program, Park & Ride, and road improvement projects. Learn more about METRO visit where you can download our information about our T.R.I.P. app and our interactive rider tool METRO 360 [take a seat].  


Major Agreement Paves Way for New Transportation Solutions


U.S. Rep. John Culberson and METRO Board Chairman Gilbert Garcia today announced an agreement paving the way for future transportation solutions to address the growing needs of the region and the nation's fourth most populous city.

The agreement prioritizes the development of commuter rail for the US 90A/Southwest Rail Corridor (SWRC) and requires METRO to receive voter approval before expanding rail on either Richmond Avenue or Post Oak Boulevard. It also focuses on METRO's efforts to purchase new buses, expand METRO Park & Ride and improve HOV lanes, further enhancing region mobility.

Garcia praised the announcement as historic. “It is time for something like this to happen because the needs of mobility are extraordinary. It crosses all political persuasions and it crosses all socio-economic lines.”

The agreement outlines several key provisions, including:

  • Support of a state governance bill with a regional focus
  • $190 million in Federal Transit Authority funding for future transit projects
  • Prioritization of 90A commuter rail
  • $587 million in matching transit credits
  • $300 million in federal funds over three years for buses, Park & Ride expansion and HOV improvements
  • METRO's agreement to not oppose changes to federal or state law to memorialize the cooperative agreement
  • No rail on Richmond Avenue west of Shepherd Drive or on Post Oak Boulevard north of Richmond unless voters approve
  • Support the will of the voters

“What today symbolizes is a new era of cooperation and agreement with METRO,” said Culberson. "We all agree that Houston has grown more than any other city in the country because of our strong economy. As people move here, it makes our transportation problems even more acute."

U.S. Rep. Al Green was also on hand for today’s announcement. "If we wait until we have gridlock, it is too late. This is a great opportunity for us to start a new spirit of cooperation," stated the congressman.

Further details of the historic agreement are outlined in a letter available for viewing and downloading here.