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TxDOT Breaks Ground on Innovative Intersection Project

Tue August 13, 2019 - West Edition #17
TxDOT


The Texas Department of Transportation was joined by Texas Transportation Commission Chairman J. Bruce Bugg Jr., State Representative Celia Israel and Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) Executive Director Ashby Johnson, to officially kick off construction for the $24.6 million project.
The Texas Department of Transportation was joined by Texas Transportation Commission Chairman J. Bruce Bugg Jr., State Representative Celia Israel and Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) Executive Director Ashby Johnson, to officially kick off construction for the $24.6 million project.

Another diverging diamond intersection (DDI) is coming to Travis County, following a groundbreaking ceremony on July 24 for the I-35 at Parmer Lane project. The Texas Department of Transportation was joined by Texas Transportation Commission Chairman J. Bruce Bugg Jr., State Representative Celia Israel and Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) Executive Director Ashby Johnson, to officially kick off construction for the $24.6 million project.

"The I-35 at Parmer Lane project is part of the Texas Clear Lanes relief initiative, which is designed to remedy congestion at some of our biggest choke points around the state," said Bugg. "These improvements are anticipated to reduce delays on the north and southbound I-35 frontage roads at Parmer Lane by more than 80 percent."

A diverging diamond intersection temporarily shifts traffic to the left side of the road, allowing through-traffic and left-turning traffic to proceed through the intersection simultaneously. This eliminates the need for left-turn arrows. This type of intersection has proven to decrease the number and severity of crashes by reducing the number of potential conflict points between cross-traffic and left-turn movements.

"This project is located in the heart of my district, and I want to thank Chairman Bugg and TxDOT for prioritizing these improvements at Parmer Lane," said Israel. "This will improve commute times while increasing safety and I'm pleased to see construction begin."

In addition to constructing the DDI, the I-35 at Parmer Lane project adds a southbound intersection bypass lane, reconstructs the northbound bypass lane along with entrance and exit ramps, and enhances bicycle and pedestrian paths. The project also includes additional turn lanes at the intersection of Parmer Lane and North Lamar Boulevard.

"I-35 serves as the backbone of our local, regional and national transportation network," said Tucker Ferguson, TxDOT Austin District engineer. "As our population continues to grow, highway congestion is only going to get worse. Innovative intersection designs, like the DDI being constructed at Parmer Lane, provide significant travel time benefits with limited construction interruption at a relatively low cost."

The project also is funded by CAMPO. "The community tells us regularly that getting people moving on I-35 is a top priority," said Ashby Johnson, CAMPO executive director. "This is the 15th Mobility35 project to break ground; it's exciting to see our hard work and planning come to fruition."

The I-35 at Parmer Lane project is anticipated to be complete mid-2021, weather permitting. The contractor is James Construction Group.

For more information, visit My35Construction.org.