According to TxDOT Public Information Officer Danny Perez, the first project will widen FM 1960 between Business FM 1960 to east of Twigsworth Lane; the second project will expand the road from Twigsworth Lane to just west of the San Jacinto River Bridge and add an overpass at West Lake Houston Parkway.
Perez noted the projects will expand the road segments from four lanes with two-way center turn lanes to six lanes divided by grass medians with 5-foot sidewalks.
According to Perez, the right-of-way acquisitions have been completed for both projects and construction will begin as soon as utility adjustments and other right-of-way preparations are complete. Officials said the eastern portion of the project will cost roughly $70 million, while the western side will cost about $58.2 million.
Both projects will take roughly 3.5 years to complete, Perez noted, meaning construction should be complete by 2025.
Perez said both projects aim to improve safety and accessibility, while also relieving traffic congestion.
The average daily traffic count along the corridor has increased in the last 10 years, according to TxDOT data collected at two points between Business FM 1960 and West Lake Houston Parkway. Between 2009-19, 1,346 more vehicles per day were clocked at one of the locations, while 3,774 more were recorded at the other.
Several business owners have expressed concern about accessibility to their business during construction as well as possibility of the overpass reducing traffic to some businesses, according to 2016 TxDOT public meeting documents.
“TxDOT is continually reviewing the traffic control and management in an effort to minimize delays and impacts to the traveling public,” Perez said. “We understand that these projects may impact the surrounding communities as construction proceeds. However, we know once completed, these two projects will significantly improve mobility while at the same time enhance safety in areas where traffic counts have increased.”
Perez added that TxDOT hopes to expedite construction by using nighttime- and weekend-work hours to minimize lane closures during peak traffic times.