According to Blueridge Transportation Group, the closure is for safety purposes.
There was a pavement failure that caused structural damage on the general purpose lanes of Hwy. 288 just south of Holmes Road, representatives from Blueridge Transportation Group said.
The closure is in the southbound lanes of SH-288 from Loop 610 to West Bellfort.
SkyEye video from above SH-288 shows the buckled road with large cracks through a section of new pavement.
"BTG is currently working very closely with their engineering, construction, environmental teams, and TxDOT to assess the roadway's impacts and determine a timeline to get traffic back to normal conditions," said Raynese Edwards, Public Information Officer for Blueridge Transportation Group.
Eyewitness News spoke to Dr. Cumaraswamy Vipulanandan of the UH Cullen College of Engineering. He believes that seeing the cracks form length-wise, in the same direction as the lanes, indicates a foundation problem.
"That will tell us something has to be happening based on the supporting system of the highway," Vipulanandan said. "The highway is supported and then there's some movement, and it might affect the highway support to break it along the length of the highway."
In the meantime, tolls have been waived from the Southmore Boulevard entrance ramp to the Beltway 8 frontage road exit ramp.
Authorities are asking drivers traveling to Beltway 8 and beyond to utilize the express toll lanes.
Detours are now in place for those traveling in the general-purpose lanes beyond Loop 610. The detours are as follows:
- Loop 610 westbound to Fannin Street: U-turn at Fannin Street onto the frontage road and enter Loop 610 eastbound to merge onto Hwy. 288 southbound.
- Loop 610 eastbound to Scott Street: U-turn at Scott Street onto the frontage road. Take the frontage road to merge onto the Hwy. 288 southbound entrance ramp.