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Texas Approves $345 Million for Pedestrian and Bike Safety

Pedestrian signal for crossing street in downtown Houston, TX.

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) recently approved $345 million worth of projects, including bicycle paths and pedestrian walkways, designed to make the state safer for everyone and reduce the number of bicycle and pedestrian accidents in Texas.

“This is a major investment in communities across the state that will help make it safer and easier to get around on foot or a bike,” Texas Transportation Commissioner Robert “Robie” Vaughn said in a statement recently released by TxDOT. “This optionality supports safety, active lifestyles, health and wellness, and can provide alternatives to traveling by vehicle.”

Pedestrian and bicycle projects in Houston, Texas

The $345 million will be spent on 83 projects throughout the state. According to TxDOT officials, “These projects will help improve safety for people walking, biking, or using wheelchairs, including 24 projects that will go in areas with a high pedestrian crash history.”

In the Houston area, such bicycle and pedestrian projects include:

  • Construction of West Loop shared-use path and Bayou Bridge in Harris County, Texas – $18.45 million.
  • Multi-modal path construction in University Asia Town area – $8.87 million.
  • Construction of shared use path in The Woodlands, Texas – $7.47 million.
  • Construction of Emancipation Trail shared use path in La Marque, Texas – $4.5 million.
  • Bicycle lane and sidewalk construction in Angleton, Texas – $4.27 million.
  • Sidewalk construction, traffic signal improvements, and other pedestrian projects in Dickinson, Texas – $2.8 million.
  • Construction of sidewalks and other public safety improvements in Hitchcock, Texas – $2.45 million.
  • Sidewalk improvement project in West Columbia, Texas – $2.26 million.
  • Bicycle transit study in Harris County, Texas – $920,000.
  • Planning study for Improving Safety and Access to White Oak Bayou – $460,000.
  • Pedestrian and bicycle master plan designed to improve bicycle and pedestrian safety in Houston – $368,000.
  • Transportation plan in Clute, Texas – $288,075.

Pedestrian accidents on the rise

One of the driving forces behind these projects is the dramatic increase in the number of pedestrian accidents and fatalities throughout Texas in recent years. Between 2013 and 2022, the number of pedestrian accident deaths in Texas has increased by 72.9 percent, from 480 deaths in 2013 to 830 deaths in 2022, according to accident data collected by TxDOT and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Bicycle accidents are also a problem

Along with pedestrian fatalities, fatal bicycle accidents have increased sharply in the past decade in Texas. Between 2013 and 2022, bicycle accident deaths have increased by a staggering 91.6 percent, from 48 deaths in 2013 to 92 bicycle fatalities in 2022, according to the NHTSA and TxDOT.

“People who walk and bike make up about 1 out of every 5 deaths on roadways here in Texas,” said Texas Transportation Commissioner Alvin New in a recent statement. “These projects will help the state move closer toward the goal of zero deaths by giving people a place to walk and bike separate from traffic.”

Contact a Houston, TX pedestrian accident attorney

An insurance claim involving a cyclist or pedestrian hit by a car might initially seem straightforward. But many times, they become complicated legal cases. That’s because the stakes can be high, and rather than paying injury victims the money they deserve, insurance companies will often do everything they can to reduce or deny injury claims.

Our Houston pedestrian accident lawyers at Smith & Hassler know how to handle insurance companies and can help you every step of the way. We know how to investigate such accidents and what evidence to look for to build a strong legal case. Many insurance companies agree to negotiate in good faith once they see we’re serious about your case. If not, we’re not afraid to file a pedestrian accident lawsuit on your behalf, seeking the compensation you deserve.

Get the law firm that gets results for injured Texans, and schedule a free case evaluation with a Houston pedestrian accident attorney who puts your best interests first. We have four offices conveniently located throughout Texas, including three offices in Houston. We also offer legal representation on a contingency fee basis. That means you pay no fees unless we win your case. Contact us today to learn more about your potential legal options.

Pedestrian fatally struck on Westheimer near Dunvale

The Houston Chronicle is reporting that a woman crossing Westheimer near Dunvale was fatally struck by a car the afternoon of Thursday April 28, 2011. The accident happened around 2:00PM. The pedestrian was pronounced dead at the scene and the driver who struck the pedestrian waited for police. HPD said that the fatal accident remains under investigation. The photograph below appears to show the deceased pedestrian on the vehicle’s roof. has reported on the same incident however the Click2Houston article identifies the pedestrian as male and states the man had been shopping at Wal-Mart immediately before the accident, then he was struck when attempting to cross four lanes of traffic not at an intersection.

A female pedestrian was fatally struck by a car on Westheimer

Smith and Hassler wishes William Shatner a Happy 80th Birthday

Those of you familiar with Smith & Hassler‘s television commercials will know that for many years actor William Shatner has been Smith & Hassler‘s spokesperson. William Shatner has enjoyed a very long and fruitful career but is probably best known for his role as Captain James T. Kirk of the starship U.S.S. Enterprise, boldly going where no man had gone before in the TV show Star Trek. Shatner played the role of Capt. Kirk from 1966 to 1969.  More recently Shatner has played the role of attorney Denny Crane in the TV series Boston Legal.

Shatner was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on March 22, 1931 making today his 80th birthday. Smith & Hassler wishes Mr. Shatner a happy birthday, and here’s to many more.

City of Tomball enacts texting while driving ordinance

A law took effect in the City of Tomball, Texas today that prohibits texting while driving.  The law is Ordinance 2010-25. The obvious goal of the ordinance is to avoid car accidents and to promote drive safety. Tomball police are hoping motorists voluntarily comply with the ordinance, and anticipate having to enforce it through fines and other measures in egregious cases. Certainly Smith & Hassler applauds any such efforts to reduce the number of injuries caused by inattentive drivers on Texas roads.

The text of the ordinance can be viewed hereStory here

Two hurt in car accident after Houston Texans game

Bellaire police are reporting a wreck on the West Loop near Evergreen Street at about 11:00pm. The collision was shortly after the Houston Texan’s game ended Thursday night and caused a two-mile backup of traffic. Two vehicles were involved in the collision and two injured people were taken to Ben Taub Hospital — the extent of their injuries has not been released. The cause for the collision is under investigation. story here.