And now, from Swamplot’s “tips” line, a reader’s brief personal testimonial for the Houston Service Helpline:
Seems like the folks who read your blog are motivated and want the best for the city (whatever that means to them). You can call 3-1-1 or (713) 837-0311 or my preference is the “web intake form” – clunky, but thorough. They send you e-mail with incident #, so you can call a representative and follow up. There are drop-down menus to request the type of service you want.
I’ve used the Houston 3-1-1 system a couple of dozen times to report:
Stray pit bull
Potholes (city is VERY responsive – normally fixed within 1 or 2 weeks, sometimes a day or two) They forward pothole/right-of-way concerns about freeways and frontage roads to TX-DOT, I think. For example, I called in several potholes on stretch of 59 frontage road near Lakewood. Within 10 days there were temporary asphalt patches (in concrete roadway). Within 3 weeks these had been cut out and replaced with concrete patches!
Streetlights burnt out (very quick) or always on (not as quick) – I believe they forward these requests to Reliant or Centerpoint – all you need is the 6-digit # on the side of the pole
Faded/worn off lane stripes and intersection markings @ westpark and weslyan – repainted within 6 weeks
Broken water main under street – slow fix
Replace speed limit sign that had fallen down – took 2-3 tries
You’ll have to wait until later in the year before you can see the complete movie, but filmmaker Andrew Garrison has just released these excerpts from his new feature, called “Trash Dance.” The film documents the creation of last September’s performance of The Trash Project, organized by choreographer Allison Orr of Forklift Danceworks and performed by the nimble artists of Austin’s Solid Waste Services Department. (For full effect, we recommend viewing the HD version.)