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DFW: US 380 freeway in Collin and Denton counties

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All the options under study are now online

The main surprise is that all options feature a freeway on the east side of Mckinney, a northward extension of SH 5 which for most options runs along the west side of McKinney airport. This connection will somewhat mitigate the alignment inefficiency of all the north bypass options.

The green and pink options follow the existing US 380 alignment (I don't know why there are two options, maybe they vary in terms of being on the north or south side of the existing road.)

The other options all have swerving bypasses, generally about 2 miles north of McKinney and Princeton, and 1 mile south of Farmersville. I think the blue option is the best of the bypasses, since it forms the cleanest loop around McKinney. (Red also forms a loop, but it is a crazy alignment. Yellow connects to the north side of the loop.)

I hesitate to predict the outcome, since I have no idea who has the most influence (neighborhoods, City of Mckinney, Collin County, TxDOT).
I prefer the green/pink option on existing US 380 since it is the most efficient and direct. But I don't know if you can get it through McKinney due to opposition.
If I was compelled to make a prediction, I'm thinking it will be Blue in the McKinney area and either blue or green/pink east of McKinney.

A Draft Environmental Assessment has also been published for US 380 in Denton County:

In this plan US 380 would be expanded to six lanes from Denton to the Collin County line, but will have only partial grade-separation, so it won't be a freeway.

--- Quote ---New grade separations are planned at Legacy Drive, Teel Parkway, Navo Road, Farm-to-Market (FM) 423, and FM 720. Existing bridges at Little Elm Creek and Doe Branch would be widened.
--- End quote ---

More coverage:

Any Rural People In Collin County should not expect any Rural Life in Collin County. Collin County is growing. Also, Rural People must know that if you want to live a Rural Life, almost every body else does also. This means they will be surrounded by neighbors and a septic system. The worst of both worlds. And also perhaps expensive electricity, expensive groceries, expensive commute, and expensive Internet. But with expansion in Collin County and even more increase in future, there will not be any Rural Areas in Collin County.

But if U.S. 380 has many opposition from every proposed alignment, perhaps they should upgrade the existing alignment similar to U.S. 287 in Decatur.

Are there actual plans to upgrade US-287 inside Decatur to a real freeway? I've seen plans for a US-287 freeway upgrade from the US-380 interchange to about a mile North of there, but nothing south of that intersection into Decatur. Existing US-287 through there sort of works like a freeway, but has all kinds of driveways and other junk connecting into the main lanes. A new freeway style exit was recently completed on the South side of Decatur.

Regarding US-380 between Denton and McKinney, I agree it's a fantasy for anyone to think they protect some kind of isolated farm life style in that area. In more rural parts of the country that kind of existence is becoming harder to afford due to the cost of infrastructure, utilities, lack of good quality Internet access, etc. More and more people are going to get pushed into cities whether they like it or not.

It's really too bad TX DOT and planners in Colin and Denton counties didn't at least widen US-380 twenty years ago. In the 1990's US-380 between Denton and McKinney was barely developed at all. They could have easily turned US-380 into a divided 4-lane highway with a big median for a future freeway. Such a thing was still do-able in 2005. Since then business and residential development has simply exploded. The short freeway upgrade they're doing from the DNT to Preston Road is one of the few areas that hasn't been swallowed up with development.

I think some parts of US-380 can be upgraded to a freeway. Doc Creek & FM-423 on East to about FM-2478 (N Custer Rd) might still be do-able. I think upgrading US-380 through McKinney would end up being too expensive and disruptive. Residents would not stand for an elevated freeway. An at-grade freeway would eat a lot of existing properties. New freeway bypasses leaving US-380 would be necessary to get through both Denton and McKinney.


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