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Author Topic: Interstate 369  (Read 42398 times)

Grzrd

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #100 on: November 19, 2017, 08:20:39 PM »

The I-69 Segment One Committee Report and Recommendations contains an interesting map which shows the Northern Loop as an "I-69 connecting route", as well as showing the West Loop as the eventual primary I-369 corridor (and doing a horrible job of showing both I-49 in Arkansas and the I-49/ I-369 interchange location) ... (page 21/155 of pdf; page 15 of document)

Also, in the unfunded "wish list" of projects, there is an upgrade of the current US 59 to interstate standards from the current I-369 to the Cass County line, with a price tag of approximately $200 million (p. 95/131 of pdf; p. 87 of document):

....

With that price tag, it would make sense to explore the "western" option.

This November 15 article provides an update about the Texarkana-Queen City "I-69" route study, and it strongly suggests that they will study the Texarkana/ US 59 corridor instead of a new terrain TexAmericas Center Corridor:

Quote
Officials from both Texarkanas heard an update on various transportation projects from local, regional and state experts on Tuesday.
Widening Interstate 30 west of town, constructing part of the Interstate 69 corridor between Texarkana and Queen City, Texas, and resurfacing State Line Avenue all came up during the quarterly meeting of the Joint Texarkana Community Committee, which focused on transportation.
Glenn Green of Texas Department of Transportation ....
Green also announced that building I-69 southward from Texarkana is "in the project development funnel," not yet funded but beginning to be studied.

"If you've heard about 369 or the I-69 corridor, you know TxDOT has developed it from each end, from the south and from the north. We here in Texarkana are considered the north bookend. And so we are starting. We have a study that has been initiated last month that will look at the I-69 corridor from this point to Queen City. We'll be taking public input and establishing the I-69 corridor through our public involvement process and environmental process. That gets this project under development," he said.
That section of the interstate probably would follow U.S. Highway 59 but could deviate from that route, Green said. Any sections of U.S. 59 used would be upgraded to interstate highway construction standards if necessary.

By saying that it could deviate from US 59 leaves them the option to study the TexAmericas Center route, but I am surprised that they haven't mentioned the TexAmericas Center route at the beginning of the study. Time will tell.
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Stormwalker

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #101 on: December 19, 2017, 03:21:40 PM »

I must admit, I'm fascinated by the I-369 development.  Admittedly, this is mostly because I have family that lives near Beckville, not far from Carthage, and I wonder how all of this is going to affect my regular trips down there to visit them.  I saw that one of the "Committee Suggested I-69 Connecting Routes" basically follows SH 149 from Longview to Carthage; my current route takes I-20 east from Dallas, then heads down 149.  It also looked like there was a route that was more direct from Dallas to Carthage shown in the suggested connecting routes.  I don't imagine I-369 itself would be faster than taking SH 149; that's too far of a detour to the east, but an upgraded direct route from Dallas to Carthage would be a significant time-saver

Obviously this isn't going to be done tomorrow, or 5 years from now, or even 10, but what kind of timetable are we looking at here, realistically?  15 years?  20?

Growing up, I certainly never imagined Carthage would have an Interstate of its own, even a 3di.  Of course, that was back before its loop was built; it's grown quite a bit since then. 

I have my doubts that this will ever be useful to me, simply because I don't know that I'll still be making those trips by the time it's done (I certainly hope to have reason to for a long time to come, but...).  Even so, as someone who's loved roads and travel since I was a child, it's pretty cool to see this unfold.
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O Tamandua

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #102 on: February 07, 2018, 12:20:10 AM »

From today's Texarkana Gazette:

Quote
Speaker tells how I-69 will speed local economic growth

Capt. Bill Diehl, president of the Greater Houston Port Bureau, said Texarkana will see a greater volume of cargo traffic when Interstate 69 opens, clearing another direct way from Houston northward.

Diehl, who was the featured speaker at the 2018 Economic Outlook Dinner, sponsored by Texas A&M University-Texarkana's College of Business, Engineering and Technology, also worked at the Panama Canal from 2004-06 and explained how ports work.

"It's cheaper for a company to ship a container from the Panama Canal to Texarkana through the Port of Los Angeles than it is through the Port of Houston," he said.

That's about to change, he said, as companies further north are now filling empty containers with plastic pellets made from ethane before they return to the port.

"It is expanding the market," he said. "Companies can get the boxes better, faster, cheaper."

Diehl predicts that more containers will come from the Port of Houston to Dallas and then be transported via truck or railroad to their final destinations.

http://www.texarkanagazette.com/news/texarkana/story/2018/feb/07/speaker-tells-how-i-69-will-speed-local-economic-growth/712338/

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Grzrd

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #103 on: May 16, 2018, 11:36:07 AM »

The Texarkana MPO recently posted the May 17, 2017 Amendment #1 to the 2015-2040 Metropolitan Transportation Plan and it included the Route Study for I-69 from Texarkana to Atlanta in the 2020 to 2024 Fiscally Constrained Project List (p. 92/131 of pdf; p. 84 of document):

....

Since the prior route study ran into NIMBY opposition, the choice of Atlanta as the southern terminus of the study presents the possibility of going around the western end of Wright Patman Lake, or maybe using the the SH 8 bridge as a basis for an interstate upgrade, before heading up to TexAmericas Center, thereby avoiding the NIMBYs. It will be interesting to see as details come forth about the study.
Also, in the unfunded "wish list" of projects, there is an upgrade of the current US 59 to interstate standards from the current I-369 to the Cass County line, with a price tag of approximately $200 million (p. 95/131 of pdf; p. 87 of document):

....

With that price tag, it would make sense to explore the "western" option. And, as would be expected, the route for I-369 would need to be determined before the route for the Northern Loop could be studied.

This article reports that some money has been allocated for a study of a "spur" off of U.S. 59/Future I-369 that would run through TexAmericas Center:

Quote
Regional transportation officials have begun a process they hope someday will result in a new Bowie County highway.
The Northeast Texas Regional Mobility Authority last week allocated $350,000 toward studying the feasibility of a spur from the future Interstate 369ónow U.S. Highway 59ówest and north through Red River Army Depot and TexAmericas Center to Interstate 30.
The Texarkana, Texas, City Council voted Monday to contribute $25,000 toward $100,000 in matching funds for the study. NET RMA is asking Bowie County, TexAmericas and other stakeholders for the remainder of the matching funds, Andrea Williams-McCoy told the council. Last year, Bowie County Judge James Carlow appointed Williams-McCoy and Cory Floyd to be the county's representatives on the NET RMA board of directors.
"This will be the first solid step of getting engineers to look at the environmentals, the costs, acquisition of right of way and all the things that go into it," city Economic Developer Jerry Sparks told the council.
The Texarkana region should act now to accommodate an increase in freight traffic anticipated once U.S. 59 becomes I-369, Williams-McCoy said. Once complete, I-369 will connect the future Interstate 69 in Shelby County to Texarkana along the U.S. 59 corridor. Construction of I-369 is in the planning and development stage.
"Because U.S. 59 has such an organic amount of very heavy freight trafficówe have timber and a number of other industries that have used that foreverówe have a really high portion of traffic on U.S. 59 before it ever becomes part of 69.
"Then when you add in factors like TexAmericas and the depot and other industries around here, there's no question that we're going to see a tremendous amount of (freight traffic), and planning for that can't happen, you know, a year before you start having a problem," Williams-McCoy said.
Carlow agreed that the time is right to begin studying the project, as the next segment of I-369 to be planned is between Queen City and Texarkana, where the proposed northwestward spur would originate. The concept is for the county to eventually donate to the state the land on which the spur would be built.
Carlow gave his comments while accepting from Mayor Bob Bruggeman a certificate that recognized his decades-long work on regional transportation and economic development.
Local cooperation will be key to achieving the spur's construction, Floyd said.
"When we're able to go to the NET RMA and tell them that we have a project that has both retail significance, state and national significance, but also local support from individuals such as yourself, it really increases our level of success," he said.

Regional Mobility Authorities are transportation agencies in Texas meant to give local governments more control over planning and project construction. One or more counties may form an RMA. The state legislature first authorized RMAs in 2001.
NET RMA formed in 2004, and Bowie County joined in 2007. NET RMA's 12 counties are Bowie, Cherokee, Gregg, Harrison, Kaufman, Panola, Rusk, Smith, Titus, Upshur, Van Zandt and Wood.
NET RMA collects revenues from a toll road around Tyler, Texas, called Toll 49, and those revenues funded the feasibility study, Williams-McCoy said.

I don't know how much significance, if any, should be placed on the "spur" language. However, it sounds like they intend to connect to the current I-369 in Texarkana and build out to TexAmericas Center.
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sparker

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #104 on: May 16, 2018, 04:28:53 PM »

I don't know how much significance, if any, should be placed on the "spur" language. However, it sounds like they intend to connect to the current I-369 in Texarkana and build out to TexAmericas Center.

Not particularly surprising; the presently signed I-369/US 59 has independent utility as the western leg of the south metro Texarkana bypass that also includes MSR/Loop 151 and part of I-49.  It's likely that regardless of the final path of I-369 that includes a connector to the unbuilt I-49 section within TX north of I-30 there will be an eventual push for another 3di either heading east from I-369 (the connector described above) or using the existing loop as currently situated; whether that would be an x30, x49, or even a x69 is too early to speculate.  Texarkana and its promoters seem to have an outsized view of themselves as the centerpiece of regional commerce; using planned and speculative alignments to cobble up a type of conceptual metro beltway seems like something that would be undertaken or at least promoted as a matter of course. 
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abqtraveler

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #105 on: May 22, 2018, 10:28:50 PM »

I don't know how much significance, if any, should be placed on the "spur" language. However, it sounds like they intend to connect to the current I-369 in Texarkana and build out to TexAmericas Center.

Not particularly surprising; the presently signed I-369/US 59 has independent utility as the western leg of the south metro Texarkana bypass that also includes MSR/Loop 151 and part of I-49.  It's likely that regardless of the final path of I-369 that includes a connector to the unbuilt I-49 section within TX north of I-30 there will be an eventual push for another 3di either heading east from I-369 (the connector described above) or using the existing loop as currently situated; whether that would be an x30, x49, or even a x69 is too early to speculate.  Texarkana and its promoters seem to have an outsized view of themselves as the centerpiece of regional commerce; using planned and speculative alignments to cobble up a type of conceptual metro beltway seems like something that would be undertaken or at least promoted as a matter of course.

My recollection is that at least the Arkansas portion of the Texarkana loop at one time carried the unsigned designation of I-130. Not sure if that designation still exists, but could I-130 take over the Texas portion of the Texarkana loop if I-369 is rerouted onto a new terrain alignment further west? Just food for thought.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #106 on: May 23, 2018, 12:28:54 AM »

Under the current funding arrangement with the federal government I wouldn't hold my breath for any new Interstate designation on what is currently signed as Texas Loop 151. The "I-130" thing is dead and gone. If the I-369 designation was removed from its portion of Loop 151 it might be possible Loop 151 between I-49 and I-30 could be re-signed as either "I-230" or "I-249." However, Texas is obviously is no rush whatsoever to obtain Interstate designations for quite a few existing freeways (and toll roads) carrying Texas state highway or even Farm to Market designations. Loop 151 will probably just remain as Loop 151 for decades into the future unless some radical changes are made to how the United States plans and funds highway infrastructure projects.
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sparker

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #107 on: May 23, 2018, 03:44:33 PM »

That's probably a correct assessment; the only thing that would get a stand-along 3di established on Loop 151 and existing I-369/US 59 would be heavy and continuous political pressure from Texarkana-area interests toward that end -- but, of course, any such effort would have to be abetted by ARDOT, since the tail end of the loop lies within their jurisdiction.  In any case, if it ever occurs, it'll be a long, long way down the line; nothing to hold one's breath over. 
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Anthony_JK

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #108 on: May 23, 2018, 11:29:37 PM »

I'm thinking that it's still up in the air whether whatever becomes I-369 even makes it to the existing Loop 151, or is displaced westward to miss the loop altogether. If they decide the latter, then wouldn't that create a situation where most of Texarkana would be shut out of 369 entirely unless they decided to either upgrade the rest of US 59 to Loop 151 or build a separate connector to I-49 a bit south of the existing loop?

If it was up to me and I had unlimited bank, I'd upgrade 59 all the way to the Loop 151, and build the Western Loop from I-49 north of Texarkana to I-30 and back down as a separate corridor.

If you really want to splurge, you could also extend the Western Loop east to reconnect with I-49 south of Texarkana. Make the whole "Outer Loop" I-249, keep the upgraded US 59 to the "Inner Loop" as I-369, and keep the small connector of Loop 151 between 59/369 and I-49 as 151.

All that's missing is the money, of course.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Interstate 369
« Reply #109 on: May 24, 2018, 01:38:11 AM »

The really odd thing is the I-369 route some planners fancy does not line up with the existing loop highway in Texarkana. It just runs farther west thru the TexAmericas Center and does not connect into the existing Texarkana loop at all. Basically it was a silly ploy for TxDOT to apply an I-369 designation to the existing loop at all.

IMHO the existing loop around the South side of Texarkana should be designated at a I-x49 route, such as I-249. The I-369 thing is its own deal, but it is cribbing on what would be the "I-249" route around the immediate area of Texarkana. I-369 would be farther West serving other purposes, legit purposes at that.
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