TxDOT has two upcoming projects that will improve FM 664 in Ellis County. Although the projects are distinct, both plans are following similar timelines. The less expansive of the two projects is TxDOT’s plans for the 8 mile segment of FM 664 from US 287 to Westmoreland Road in Ovilla, Texas.
The proposed project will include reconstructing, realigning and widening the roadway. TxDOT will transform the two lane, rural roadway into a four lane, urban roadway with a raised median. Additional improvements will include the elimination of 90 degree turns and the construction of 6-foot wide sidewalks. The plans received environmental clearance in the fall of 2020. The next steps for the project are the acquisition of approximately 87 acres of right-of-way, which may displace one residential and one commercial property.
TxDOT will be making major improvements to FM 664 in Ellis County. The changes to the Ellis County roadway are occurring as two distinct TxDOT projects, although both are following similar timelines. The more expansive of the two projects is TxDOT’s plans for the segment of FM 664 from IH 35E in Red Oak to IH 45 south in Ferris.
The plans for the 9.96 mile stretch of FM 664 will expand the current two to four lane roadway into a six lane roadway. Additionally, two new interchanges and one new bypass will be built. One of the interchanges will be will be constructed at IH 35E from Red Oak to Tater Brown Road and the other will be at IH 45 from the IH 45 crossover to E. 8th Street. The new bypass will be located south of the City of Ferris in order to connect to the new interchange at IH 45.
The project received final environmental clearance in the spring of 2020. The next step for TxDOT is the acquisition of right-of-way (ROW). TxDOT is planning to acquire 164 acres of new ROW, which is anticipated to displace 17 residential structures and 10 commercial properties.
This post serves as an update on the High Speed Rail Project.
The Dallas to Houston High-Speed Rail (HSR) System could allow for a 90-minute trip between the two cities, due to a travel speed of up to 205 mph. The HSR would be a “closed” system, which means that the train would not share any intersections with roadways or other train tracks. The HSR will require its own dedicated tracks.
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has issued the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Dallas to Houston High Speed Rail (HSR) Project. The draft states that the Speed Railway will use the Japanese N00 Tokaido Shinkansen technology. The proposed system would connect the 240-miles between Dallas and Houston.
The Draft EIS documents attempt to describe the FRA’s evaluation of the possible environmental impacts of the Project and recommends a preferred alternative from among six Build Alternatives between Dallas and Houston. The FRA will hold 10 public hearings in January and February 2018. The counties and dates of these public hearings are listed as such:
- Dallas County – January 29, 2018
- Navarro County – January 29, 2018
- Ellis County – January 30, 2018
- Leon County – January 30, 2018
- Freestone County – January 31, 2018
- Limestone County – January 31, 2018
- Harris County – February 5, 2018
- Madison County – February 5, 2018
- Waller County – February 6, 2018
- Grimes County – February 6, 2018
To get more information about the HSR Projects, the government’s website is: https://www.fra.dot.gov/Page/P0700
In 2014, Texas Department of Transportation proposed the construction of a six-lane frontage road system between I-35E and I-45 through Dallas and Ellis Counties, Texas. The project will be constructed in three phases and TxDot will begin engineering and environmental studies for the section of Loop 9 from I-35 to I-45 (Corridor B) first. According to the TxDot, this initial section is approximately 9.5 miles in length and is expected to cost about $710 million.
Various public meetings have been held regarding Loop 9. A typical right-of-way for the Loop 9 project would vary from approximately 384 to 548 feet in width. Currently, TxDot predicts that due to the right-of-way acquisitions there will be at least 25 residential areas displacements, 7 commercial displacements and 68 other facilities such as carports, storage sheds, etc. displaced by the new frontage road. According to our records, TxDot has not yet finalized the route and those who will be affected. This is an ongoing project, and TxDot predicts that Phase 1 could be completed by spring of 2022.