AUSTIN, TX —The Texas Transportation Commission recently approved a 10-year transportation plan that includes more than $77 billion dedicated to improving safety, addressing congestion and connectivity, and preserving roadways for Texas drivers, officials announced.
The 10-year Texas Department of Transportation plan, dubbed the 2020 Unified Transportation Program (UTP), contains more than $4 billion for safety improvements, including an extra $600 million for the next two years to help accelerate even more safety measures in an effort to reduce crashes and eliminate fatalities from our roadways by 2050, officials said.
Many of the planned improvements will widen roads; improve median barriers and bridges; upgrade guardrails; provide intersection improvements, such as upgraded traffic signals and signage; and make safety improvements for bicyclists and pedestrians, officials noted.
More than $600 million committed to fund transportation improvements in the state’s bustling Permian Basin energy sector is included in the plan to add to other funding in the energy sector, transportation officials noted. Projects focus on safety, connectivity, congestion relief, as well improving mobility at high-volume intersections, it was further noted. Funding also will pay for pavement strengthening for roadways with high truck volumes and weights, officials said.
“TxDOT is committed to reducing congestion and improving mobility and safety in Texas as evidenced by the agency’s largest 10-year plan to date,” J. Bruce Bugg, Jr., commission chairman, said in a prepared statement. “Additionally, we keep making progress in addressing congestion in our busiest parts of the state through our Texas Clear Lanes initiative, which addresses congestion in top chokepoints in our largest metro areas.”
Bugg noted many of the projects in this plan are roadway segments identified on Texas’ 100 Most Congested Roadways list. The projects will be delivered with funding from legislative and voter-approved initiatives that allocate portions of oil and gas taxes, sales taxes and other money to the state highway fund, he said.
Projects are selected based on how effective the projects are in addressing areas such as pavement condition, safety, capacity and rural connectivity, officials noted. Projects are chosen collaboratively by TxDOT and local transportation leaders with ultimate approval by the Texas Transportation Commission with input from the public, according to TxDot. The UTP authorizes highway projects for planning activities, development and construction. In addition to highway projects, the UTP address public transportation, maritime, aviation and rail.