McKinney weighs in on proposed US 380 alignments, hopes to spur further discussion with TxDOT

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After a year of public discussion about US 380, the city of McKinney is weighing in on the proposed US 380 alignments. But rather than choosing one of the options proposed by the Texas Department of Transportation, the city has created a new one.

Some of TxDOT’s bypass options could create “an unjustified and unnecessary negative impact to the city of McKinney,” city officials said in a letter sent to the agency earlier this month.

Mayor George Fuller said he hopes the city’s concept will initiate further discussions.

“[The alignment is] really a conversation starter, a place holder, a push for TxDOT to look at something west of Tucker Hill,” Fuller told Community Impact Newspaper. 

Talk about ways to alleviate traffic congestion on US 380 began in April 2018. TxDOT presented five proposed alignments for the roadway. Those were narrowed to two in October. Last month, residents learned about two new proposed segments of US 380 in Collin County.

TxDOT officials are scheduled to select one alignment for US 380 in Collin County in May. The first of three meetings will take place May 6 in McKinney.

McKinney sent its new alignment in a letter to the North Central Texas Council of Governments on April 24. The so-called teal alignment runs north of the current US 380 alignment near TxDOT’s proposed red alignment, connecting to the current US 380 east of Farmersville. The teal alignment also encompasses part of TxDOT’s yellow alignment proposed in October, which continues a bypass north of New Hope and Princeton. The teal alignment also extends the roadway south of US 380 and east of the McKinney National Airport.

Fuller said the city’s proposed alignment creates a regional loop around the airport and Princeton.

The city would like an environmental impact study done on the teal alignment, according to Fuller.

“Due to TxDOT’s inexplicable insistence to drop its consideration of the Red B and Red E alignments, McKinney city staff has developed an alternative alignment that we feel best addresses the regional east-west mobility goals for US 380 as well as some of our deepest concerns regarding impacts on McKinney businesses and residents,” Fuller said in the letter to NCTCOG.

In a written response April 25, NCTCOG Director of Transportation Michael Morris said the teal alignment creates an opportunity for an extension of SH 121 east of US 75. That option would align with north-south movement east of the McKinney airport. Morris also said the teal alignment would help Collin County create a regional loop.

TxDOT officials were unavailable for comment.

McKinney City Manager Paul Grimes sent a separate letter to TxDOT on April 12.

“Over the course of the [Feasibility] Study, TxDOT staff … have continuously requested that cities not take any formal position or action until the study is complete and a full set of decision-making criteria and technical information can be presented,” Grimes stated in the letter. “In the spirit of partnership and trust in the TxDOT study process, the city of McKinney has honored that request.”

But now the city feels the need to voice its opinion.

The letter to TxDOT explained that McKinney staff will advise City Council to “weigh carefully their support” for any bypass option that does not occur farther west of TxDOT’s Red A alignment. The letter also stated that McKinney City Council will not support any alignments west of the McKinney National Airport.

The city also opposed TxDOT’s green alignment, stating in the letter to NCTCOG that the alignment would be disruptive to existing commercial business and residents along US 380.

“Additionally, we have been notified by Raytheon, our largest employer, that any proposed widening in place will cause irreparable harm to both current operations and future expansion plans, thus compromising its tenure in McKinney,” according to the letter sent to NCTCOG.



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COMMENT
  1. Are you kidding me? Every single person at the City of McKinney that had something to do with this should resign. This will do nothing be delay the project. It is simply not true that TXDoT did not ask for their input from the very start. They received a letter just like all the other cities asking for their input before the public was even made aware of the study. Now they simply claim to want an entirely different route plus another 9 miles of road. Their plan might be great but they should have said a year ago anything that was going to be a redline (no pun intended) for them. They should have given TXDoT an entire list of every segment they were not willing to support. To me this looks like one of two things… either they want to delay the project or somebody owns properties on the McKinney alignments. For full disclosure… my family owns property on ALL of the alignments above.

  2. Teresa McDaniel

    Living off 380 in Princeton is a nightmare, trying to just to go to the store is taking your life in others hands..they will not slow down.

  3. Catherine Williams

    Why not make a raised highway on 380? 380 is already the commercial corridor, so why are we looking at moving commercial traffic through residential areas and wetlands? Not to mention that if growth keeps going as it is going, then these bypasses will be too little by the time they are completed.

  4. Michael G Smith

    As someone with no dog in this hunt, I’m inclined to support the bypass option. If the city is worried about a 10% hit to sales tax revenues in some areas, imagine what the businesses that actually operate are feeling. I get that residential property values are impacted too, but for retail businesses even a little construction can be downright disastrous. All of these problems are going to get worse, not better. Keep in mind that TXDoT has made perfectly plain that one of the options on the table is to simply take state tax dollars elsewhere. Our local leaders may need to bite the bullet on something, or end up living with a worsening problem for decades.

  5. The original plan was to have a 500 foot right of way on the current alignment. All the cities except maybe Prosper were against that. Raytheon all but killed the current alignment in McKinney. They said that it would cost more than $1,000,000,000 for them to move. That would increase the price of the county wide project by 50%. Apparently some people thought their grassy security buffer could be used without them moving. It cannot be. If that was not good enough, I am sure they would have the federal government simply block it on national security grounds.

    One important thing to remember is that the bypass will be 10 lanes. That will be 16 total lanes with the current alignment remaining. If all the lanes were on the current alignment, 16 lanes would be the starting point for the studies. That 500 foot road would wipe out more than 95% of Princeton’s retail and cost more than $80 million more to construct in Princeton alone.

  6. McKinney is trying to get Collin County taxpayers to fund road access to the $22M speculative land purchase the city made at McKinney airport. They want all other county residents to cough up a minimum $167M in incremental road costs so they can get access to it.

    Anyone in real estate knows you don’t speculate; McKinney went against an express vote of its citizens and their consultants report and bought the land anyway; now they are desperate to get access to it.

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Cassidy Ritter
Cassidy graduated from the University of Kansas in 2016 with a degree in Journalism and a double minor in business and global studies. She has worked as a reporter and editor for publications in Kansas, Colorado and Australia. She was hired as senior reporter for Community Impact Newspaper's Plano edition in August 2016. Less than a year later, she took the role of editor for the McKinney edition.
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