NSM Faculty/Staff Newsletter

From the Office of the Dean

Cullen Boulevard Transformation

As some of you may have already experienced, Cullen Boulevard is being renovated between N. MacGregor Parkway and IH-45

This work is occurring in two phases – the first is from N. MacGregor to just before Wheeler Avenue (approx. May 2019 – Dec 2019). The second is from just before Wheeler Avenue through to IH-45 (approx. Dec 2019 – Jun 2021). The listed time ranges are from the original plan and are approximate.

The funding comes jointly from Harris County and the City of Houston, which is targeted at improving selected streets around UH ($15M) and Texas Southern University ($15M). The purpose of the renovation of Cullen Blvd. is to improve safety of pedestrians and bicycle/skateboard users, particularly on game days.

A traffic survey was conducted that factored in anticipated changes in flow due to new parking garages that have recently come online and those that will be completed in the near future. Garage 5 on Elgin is expected to divert significant traffic away from Cullen beyond Elgin from IH-45. Additionally, Garage 6 under construction on Spur 5 should further divert traffic through Cullen.

Importantly, the vehicular capacity between Wheeler and Elgin will be reduced to one lane each way, although there will be bus turn-ins, a central turn lane, and some dedicated right turn lanes. The street between Wheeler and Holman will be plaza style with wide sidewalks incorporating bike lanes, but will have no curbs. This will allow pedestrians of all kinds to easily cross Cullen on game days.

Additionally, the intersection at Cullen and Holman will be converted into a ‘scramble’ – that is, all traffic will have a red light and all pedestrians can cross simultaneously those two streets. I believe that there will continue to be two lanes each way between Elgin and IH-45.

An important element of the design is for improved water drainage, holding, and transport. I think that Cullen between Wheeler and Elgin will feel a lot more like a part of the University and should be much safer, more attractive, and inviting for visitors and incumbents. Be prepared with alternative routes to your parking areas during, and possibly even after, the renovation.

Additional information and details can be found in the links below.