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Construction agreement sets I-35W expansion in motion

Posted Oct. 11, 2012

I-35W

A portion of I-35W north of downtown Fort Worth tops TxDOT’s 100 Most Congested Roadways.

The Texas Department of Transportation has negotiated a construction agreement with NTE Mobility Partners for the first phase of I-35W reconstruction.

The agreement sets in motion a $1.6 billion expansion of Texas’ most-congested highway. The project will add two managed lanes each way on I-35W, or the North Tarrant Express, and rebuild the existing highway.

Funding for the project highlights the region’s strong transportation partnerships. The North Central Texas Council of Governments has committed approximately $89.5 million for the project and identified another $40.5 million for project contingencies. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Transportation invited the developer to apply for a Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan of up to $537 million to help fund the project. The project also is expected to receive $273 million from bonds issued by the developer and $446 million in developer equity.

The scheduled improvements from north of I-30 to north of I-820 are expected to get under way in mid-2013, with completion in mid-2018. As part of this project, TxDOT will also make improvements to a segment that runs from north of I-820 to US 81/287. Once completed, both segments will be turned over to NTE Mobility Partners for operations and maintenance.

“This is a project that I have been involved with for many years and seen advance through  many considerable obstacles, but with the help of four different Fort Worth mayors, county judges, legislators, business leaders and other advocates, we have managed to keep advancing it forward,” said TxDOT Commissioner Bill Meadows.

TxDOT will host a public hearing at 6 p.m. Oct. 11 at the TxDOT Fort Worth District Regional Training Center, 2501 S.W. Loop 820, to present the draft agreement.

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