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Newsflash
(This page is no longer updated. It is kept for reference purposes.)

6-April-2001 Enviromental clearance for the $1.5 billion SH 130 in central Texas is granted, and final approval is assured. It's looking more and more like SH 130 will actually be built.
Discussions are underway to make Houston's IH-10 expansion even bigger by adding a toll road in the middle. Including feeder roads, the lane count would be 24 lanes. This is eerily reminiscent of the IH-610 proposal in 1992, which the opposition labelled as a 24 lane freeway and quickly killed it off.
5-April-2001 The winning bid of $260 million for the IH-635 / US 75 interchange in Dallas is a big cost overrun. However, it does not look like the project is at risk.
31-March-2001 The cancelled western end of SH 45 in northwest Austin is still causing controversy. The freeway/tollway was cancelled to appease the neighborhood and the City of Cedar Park, but now the neighborhood is unhappy to have a freeway stop at its edge, and momentum appears to be moving in the direction of reinstating the cancelled section.
26-March-2001 Alignments for new freeways/tollways are causing controversy. In Houston, the north section of the Grand Parkway is stirring up trouble. The opposition appears to be over alignments, not over the Grand Parkway itself. In northeast Dallas the east extension of the 190 Bush Turnpike is controversial.
16-March-2001 Legislation for the Texas Mobility Fund is passed in the Senate and looks like a good bet to become law. Voter approval will be required in November. This represents a new funding source for TxDOT, since contributions to the mobility fund will be from general revenues that are not already dedicated. It appears that an increase in the fuel tax to increase funds to TxDOT is highly unlikely.
16-March-2001 The Arlington Morning News reports that construction on the new 161 freeway will begin in 2003, starting at IH-20 and proceeding northward. Feeder roads only will be constructed initially.
11-March-2001 The Dallas Morning News provides a comprehensive report on the development of Dallas' outer loop. The project is gaining momentum, although construction is anywhere from 5 to 15 years away. See map. Engineer's special: related article on north Texas soil conditions.
11-March-2001 Loop 1 recommendation: TxDOT has succumbed to neighborhood opposition and will not add general purpose capacity to the critically congested central section of Loop 1. Only HOV or managed lanes will be added. The largest option with 4 managed lanes requiring 147 residential displacements and 18 business displacments is still an option under consideration.
10-March-2001 121 in Collin County has become a strong candidate to become a tollway. Fortunately, the section in Denton County to DFW Airport will still be a freeway. The way things have been going in Dallas, this section probably will become a tollway.
9-March-2001 Light rail will be built in Houston after a favorable court ruling on March 8. Construction will start immediately on the $300 million segment on Main Street.
24-Feb-2001 Final environmental approval is granted for SH 45 north of Austin. See map. Construction will likely begin in 2002 if toll road status is approved. I estimate that there is a 95% chance that SH45 will be designated as a toll road.
19-Feb-2001 Big problem in Houston? Environmentalists are stirring up trouble with Houston's long-term road-building plan. In the crosshairs: the Grand Parkway. Read the frightening article.
12-Feb-2001 George Bush Turnpike Super Connector - The cost of this 5-mile tollway has exploded from $179 million to $417.6 million. The cost increase will not affect the construction schedule and scheduled 2004 completion, but may consume resources intended for other projects. Location map.
6-Feb-2001 Road bonds are a major issue in this year's legislative session.
Light rail in Houston is stopped by a court order just days before construction is to begin.
31-Jan-2001 An article in the Houston Business Journal describes how many of the hundreds of business to be displaced in the massive I-10 west expansion in Houston have banded together to ensure fair treatment in the condemnation process.
22-Nov-2000 $800 million loan obtained for Austin tollway construction. See article

 
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