Every year, the City of Houston goes through a capital planning process where they allocate about $8 billion over five years.
I wanted to know where these projects are, and how much we’re spending on them. I became curious about this process after last year’s discussion about equitable distribution.
So I extracted a bunch of data from the Excel sheet on the open data portal and put it on a map.
Things to know:
- There are 545 CIPs in the 2016-2020 plan, but only 371 appear on this map.
- There are two reasons why: (1) the project is not location-specific (like $350k for “data center consolidation” or $61k for “citizen engagement software”), or (2) I was unable to geocode the location. If you find errors, please let me know and I’ll update.
- Circle size represents the total budget of the project. The total budget can include allocations over five years. I calculated the radius of the circle by taking the square root of the total budget and multiplied the result by .005.
- If you are concerned about a project, look up your council member, give them a call, and reference the CIP# (included in the popup).
- There is a lot more data available if you dig into the spreadsheet.
- The City of Houston archives CIP plans from year to year. You can read the current one here.
- In February and March of each year, the City hosts a handful of hyperlocal community meetings. If you have an opinion about these projects, it’s important to attend these meetings.
- For official City of Houston project information, take a look at the public meeting PDFs which are separated by district.
- There is a new effort to tie the CIP process to Plan Houston in order to better coordinate these projects.