As we approach the final days of voting on the 2017 Mobility Bond, one of the important questions that’s arisen from the community is: “How do we deal with road noise? Specifically, the road noise from Grand Parkway (SH99)?”
The history of the Grand Parkway development and the growth in the surrounding communities make this issue important to all of us and the short answer is: sound walls and grooved pavement. 20+ years ago, when the Texas Department of Transportation (TX DOT) first developed Grand Parkway, the environmental study at that time concluded that a sound wall was not necessary. Clearly, much has changed since then and TxDOT will be conducting a Sound Study as part of their plan to expand SH99 & will use that to determine if a wall is necessary.
Here in Fort Bend County – Commissioner Meyers has taken a proactive approach. When the County built the frontage road that stretches northbound from FM 1093 to Fry Road, a sound wall (see attached picture) was also built to help mitigate road noise coming towards the residential properties. He also is a firm believer in the grooved pavement technology that is proven to reduce road noise from vehicles and has testified to TxDOT for its inclusion in any expansion on SH99. Commissioner Meyers has already included the cost of sound walls in the budget for the SH 99 access roads that are part of the County’s 2017 Mobility Bond Propositions. These walls would be similar and serve the same function as the one that Commissioner Meyers already built on the northbound frontage between 1093 & Fry Road (see picture).
If the Ballot issue does not pass there are no current plans to build additional sound walls by Fort Bend County. The expansion of the Grand Parkway / SH 99 by TxDOT is wholly separate from the frontage roads included in the Fort Bend County 2017 Mobility Bond Propositions.