New improvements are coming to major highways in Dallas County, and officials are seeking public comment on the proposed multimillion-dollar plans.
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) originally announced it would be holding a “virtual public meeting” to discuss changes for the I-635/I-35E Interchange in Dallas County and that the meeting would remain available online through November 17 so that the public could offer feedback on the proposed changes.
“We’re asking for some early ideas and we want to get some opinions,” said TxDOT spokesperson Kenna Mitchell, reported CultureMap Dallas. “We want to know of anything that we missed. People are out there driving on this every day. Is there something we should look at in addition to what we are proposing?”
The plans call for improvements to be made to I-635 between Luna Road and Denton Drive as well as I-35E and I-35E Express between Royal Lane and Valley View Lane and include the construction of four double-lane “managed direct connectors within the existing I-635/I-35E interchange,” according to the virtual public meeting webpage.
“The direct connectors facilitate access between I-635 and I-35E for the northbound to eastbound, southbound to eastbound, westbound to southbound, and westbound to northbound movements,” says the webpage. “Managed lanes (two in each direction) would be constructed along I-635 from Luna Road to near Denton Drive. Continuous frontage roads will be added through the interchange, and additional general purpose mainlanes will be added along both I-635 and I-35E.”
The plan would cost taxpayers $380 million to carry out. TxDOT said the project is needed due to roadways being unable to meet current or future traffic demands, resulting in “congestion and reduced mobility,” according to the presentation on the virtual public meeting webpage.
Officials said the project would solve such issues by increasing mobility and “connectivity” while reducing congestion in the area. Nelson Underwood, project manager for TxDOT, said the project will also fix older sections of roadway around westbound I-635 and northbound I-35E exits.
“This would do away with the left exits and move them to their proper location: right-hand entrances and exits,” said Underwood, according to CultureMap. “That interchange was originally built in the ’60s. It’s old. That’s another part of why we’re looking at making improvements.”
Friday is the final day for the public to submit comments on the proposed plans. Comments can be submitted by clicking here. Comments can also be emailed to Underwood at [email protected]. Those without internet access can call 214-320-6628 to comment between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Finally, comments can be submitted by mail to Nelson Underwood, TxDOT Dallas District Office, 4777 E. U.S. Highway 80, Mesquite, Texas 75150. They must be postmarked by today.