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Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership
Transportation
Houston TranStar
News Release
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Hurricane Harvey Activity Smashes Website’s Previous Records
Houston TranStar’s Website was ‘hardened’ in advance to prevent crashes, keep going

Houston TranStar’s website, www.houstontranstar.org, proved itself a trusted, reliable information resource for travel conditions as Hurricane Harvey bore down, dumped some 50 inches of rain, and finally moved on, leaving the region largely underwater.

From Friday, Aug. 25 – Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017, a total of 411 high-water freeway locations registered on the Real Time Traffic Map. But even with power outages in many neighborhoods rendering Internet connection impossible, TranStar’s website usage records were shattered as 3.07 million unique visitors accessed the site.

“Our four-agency collaboration has always understood the value of providing real-time online information about road conditions to our residents and visitors,” said Ed Emmett, Harris County Judge and member of the Houston TranStar Executive Committee, “and we encourage investment in robust technology to support these incredibly intense peaks of web visitors during major weather events--as well as for day-to-day use.”

Website use peaked on August 27, when more than 1 million individuals accessed the website. Web accesses (“hits”) totaled 30,684,727 during the 11-day period. As a comparison, during 2008’s Hurricane Ike, the website experienced 12,939,474 accesses.

“The TranStar website, our Twitter feeds and the Facebook page serve as an arsenal of information capable of reaching different audiences with different needs,” said Mike Vickich, Senior Analyst for the Texas A & M Transportation Institute, who assists with managing the website for Houston TranStar. “During widespread regional flooding events such as Hurricane Harvey, the information provided by TranStar is critical to the entire Houston region. The system has been designed to support events exactly like this.”

 




Dannenbaum Engineering BayTran
Remembering Jim Guidry


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