Trucking News Online

Congested Texas Interstate Gets $531 Million Upgrade

September 19, 2013 By: Trucking News Staff Tags: News, Safety

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today announced a $531 million Transportation Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan for Interstate Highway 35W in Tarrant County, Texas, that will relieve one of state’s most congested corridors and improve safety by upgrading the expressway and adding two new lanes in each direction.

The Interstate is also a key route for U.S.-Mexico trade, serving Dallas/Fort Worth distribution centers.

IH-35W is a critical commuter and international trade corridor, providing direct access for Denton County residents to jobs in the Fort Worth business district and connecting Tarrant County residents to employment centers in the northern part of the county.

The project will reconstruct more than 12 miles of freeway and add managed lanes, which give drivers the option of paying a toll to use them, on the most congested segments of IH-35W in Tarrant County. The project will also reconstruct the IH 820/IH 35W interchange.

The reconstruction will bring the existing general purpose lanes and interchange up to current design standards to address safety issues with the highway, improving the distance from exit ramps to cross-street intersections, shoulder width, bridge clearances and merging distances at the interchange.

Since the highway opened in the 1960s, Tarrant County has grown exponentially, with 100,000 vehicles that travel on that segment of IH-35W each day.

The $531 million TIFIA loan will go toward the $1.6 billion total cost of the project.  The private concessionaire, NTE Mobility Partners, will receive the loan for the work under agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation.