The Texas Transportation Commission approved funding Aug. 30 for the $606 million I-35 Capital Express North project in North Austin that will add one high-occupancy vehicle lane in each direction between SH 45 North and Hwy. 290 East.

Construction is estimated to start in early 2023, said Brad Wheelis, public information officer for the Texas Department of Transportation Austin district.

The HOV lane, also called a managed lane, will be for use by carpools, vanpools, emergency services vehicles and public transit, according to TxDOT.

Other aspects of the project include reconstructing bridges, adding a diverging diamond interchange at Wells Branch Parkway, improve bicycle and pedestrian accommodations and make additional safety and mobility improvements, according to TxDOT. The commission awarded the contract to Pulice Construction, Inc., which has regional offices in Scottsdale and Houston.

The project is receiving funding from both TxDOT and the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, which is the regional transportation planning group.

The commission, which is the governing board for TxDOT, approved the funding the same day it also approved the 2023 Unified Transportation Program, a 10-year $85 billion road construction plan. The I-35 Capital Express North project, as well as the $4.5 billion for the I-35 Capital Express Central project to expand the highway in Central Austin, are part of the 10-year plan. Both the Capital Express Central and North projects are estimated to be under construction in 2023-26, according to the UTP.

In June, TxDOT completed creating a diverging diamond interchange at I-35 and Parmer Lane as a separate project from the I-35 Capital Express North project.