General contractor Balfour Beatty completed an $83 million improvement project on I-35E between I-30 and Oak Lawn Avenue with an official ribbon-cutting ceremony.
The snip of a ribbon commemorated a new approach to reducing traffic congestion in the Interstate 35E Lowest Stemmons corridor near downtown Dallas. Federal, state and local officials joined TxDOT in celebrating the completion of an $83 million improvement project on I-35E between I-30 and Oak Lawn Avenue with an official ribbon cutting.
The project constructed new collector-distributor lanes, which parallel I-35E and give drivers a safer and easier path to and from Woodall Rodgers Freeway and the Dallas North Tollway. The dedicated lanes are improving safety by eliminating the previous merging and weaving movements, a change that will keep traffic flowing on the main lanes and on the new connector ramps.
"This corridor was identified as one of the most congested in the state and has about a quarter million vehicles moving through it daily with an average speed of about 12 miles per hour," Dallas District Engineer Mo Bur said. "We found a solution to construct these dedicated connectors without needing to acquire a square inch of right of way. With traffic routed more efficiently, we expect those average corridor speeds will rise to around 50 miles per hour, making this a win for drivers and for safety."
Seven new bridge spans were constructed adjacent to the north and southbound I-35E main lanes. The project also features capacity improvements on the frontage roads.
This project is one of several Texas Clear Lanes projects across the state and the first to be completed in the Dallas District. This initiative targets extremely congested roadways in Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio and Houston. Due to dedicated funding overwhelmingly approved by Texas voters in 2014 and 2015, TxDOT has been able to develop and program projects specifically designed to reduce gridlock and improve safety in these large metropolitan areas.
"As Texas continues to grow, so do the traffic demands in key metros across the state with 24 chokepoints identified in Dallas alone," Texas Transportation Commission Chairman J. Bruce Bugg Jr. said. "Congestion is not just about lost time. It's also about lost productivity. If we can keep traffic moving and get it moving faster, the Texas economy will have even more opportunities to grow. The Texas Clear Lanes effort will continue to find innovative transportation solutions like this $83 million project."
Other Texas Clear Lanes projects currently under way in the Dallas metro include:
- I-635 LBJ East — Highway reconstruction and widening; new, continuous frontage roads in the I-635 corridor between I-30 and US 75; improvements to the I-635/I-30 interchange; and improved safety and mobility. Estimated completion in winter 2024. $1.7 billion.
- I-35E/US 67 Southern Gateway — Highway reconstruction and widening; reducing congestion; improving mobility and operational efficiency. Estimated completion in winter 2021. $666 million.
- Irving Interchange — Interchange improvements at Loop 12, SH 114, Spur 482 and SH 183 to reduce congestion and improve mobility and operational efficiency. Estimated completion in spring 2023. $301 million.
- I-30 East — Improvements between Bass Pro Drive and FM 2642 including additional lanes, bridges and ramp modifications to improve mobility and efficiency. Estimated completion in 2026. $834 million.
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