Houston construction: Residents say project is keeping them from leaving their homes on Talton Street in northeast Houston

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — When it comes to construction here in Houston, we know sometimes it gets worse before it gets better. People who live on Talton Street on the northeast side of the city are experiencing just that.

Some people are not able to leave their homes because of an ongoing project by Houston Public Works.

Residents who spoke with ABC13 said they are glad Houston Public Works is doing this drainage project as it should help with flooding, however, how long it’s taking is becoming a problem.

“Oh yeah, we’re happy that they’re trying to make it better, but we shouldn’t have to go this long in making something better,” said Linda Charles who has lived on Talton Street for 48 years. “We were satisfied with the July complement… but now, it went from August. Now we’re in September. Next few days, we’ll be in October, so how much more do we have to wait?”

Houston Public Works said they broke ground on the project in April 2021. It was supposed to be completed by late summer, however, in a statement they said:

“Talton Street between Forest View and Monterrey is a Local Drainage Project which includes installation of a 24-inch underground stormwater line with inlets, driveways, curbs, and sidewalks. The contractor installed the stormwater line and began the base for asphalt pavement. Several rain events delayed the construction of the street. Houston Public Works reached out to the contractor to build up access to driveways. Construction resumed on Tuesday. Houston Public Works inspectors will monitor the area to keep an eye on the progress.”

As crews build up the base for the road, many who live on this street cannot leave their houses. Gloria Arocha said that because of her health condition, this makes her nervous.

“I had a heart attack and I have doctor’s appointments that I need to attend, and we can’t get out. I’m scared. Scared to be in this situation,” explained Arocha.

Typically, one side of the street would be torn up at a time to cause less of a disruption, according to public works. But in this situation, the road was in such bad shape, they said it all had to be torn up at once.

Neighbors said they are waiting for the day the mess will finally be cleaned up.

“Once this gets complete, it’s just like hitting the lottery. That’s just how happy I will be,” said Charles.

Houston Public Works says weather permitting, the project should be completely finished by mid-October.

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