Interstate 69 in Texas

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This article is about the section of Interstate 69 in Texas. For the entire route, see Interstate 69.

Interstate 69 marker

Interstate 69
Route information
Maintained by TxDOT
Length: 155.8 mi (250.7 km)
Existed: December 5, 2011 (2011-12-05) – present
Major junctions
South end: US 59 in Rosenberg
  I-2 in Harlingen
I-45 in Houston
I-10 in Houston
North end: US 59 near Cleveland
Highway system
SH 68 US 69

Interstate 69 (I-69) in the U.S. state of Texas is an extension of that existing Interstate Highway that will pass through the eastern part of the state and along the Gulf Coast to Victoria, where it will split into multiple segments with I-69E terminating in Brownsville, I-69C terminating in Pharr, and I-69W terminating in Laredo.

As of March 2015, a 74.9 mile section of US-59 has been designated as I-69 through the Houston Metropolitan Area.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) has approved an additional 53 miles (85 km) of US 77 from Brownsville to Raymondville for designation as I-69, which will be signed as I-69E upon concurrence from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). FHWA approval for this segment was announced on May 29, 2013.[1]

Route description[edit]

The congressionally designated I-69 corridor begins at the Mexican border with 3 auxiliary routes:

I-69/US 59 in Houston looking east
What is now I-69/US 59 (Southwest Freeway) in 1972

I-69W and I-69E will merge just south of Victoria, Texas, where mainline I-69 will follow US 59 northeast to Fort Bend County. In the Houston area, I-69 follows US 59 (Southwest Freeway) from Fort Bend County to the west loop of Interstate 610 (I-610). I-69 then follows US 59 (Eastex Freeway) from the north loop of I-610 to the Liberty-Montgomery county line. The segment of US 59 inside Loop I-610, through downtown Houston, was approved for designation as I-69 by the FHWA on March 9, 2015 and approved for signage as I-69 by the Texas Transportation Commission on March 25, 2015.[2]

I-69 will follow US 59 to the north, serving Cleveland, Shepherd, Livingston, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, and Tenaha. At Tenaha, I-69 will head into Louisiana along the US 84 corridor. The segment of US 59 from Tenaha to Texarkana will be signed as Interstate 369 (I-369).

Since the first section of US 77 between Corpus Christi and Robstown has been signed as I-69, it implies that the I-69 mainline will follow the coastal (US-77) route from Victoria to Brownsville. This also implies that the branch along US 59 from Victoria to Laredo and the branch along US 281 from George West to Pharr are to be signed as either 3-digit spurs of I-69 (I-x69) or as separate 2-digit interstate routes. While federal legislation designating the south Texas branches as I-69 suggests that these routes may be designated as "I-69E" (east, following US-77), "I-69C" (central, following US-281), and "I-69W" (west, following US-59), the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Special Committee on Route Numbering rejected the Texas Department of Transportation's request for these three designations along the proposed I-69 branches, citing that AASHTO policy no longer allows Interstate highways to be signed as suffixed routes. Stating that the I-69E, I-69C, and I-69W designations for the three I-69 branches south of Victoria, Texas were written into federal law, the initial denial of TxDOT's applications were subsequently overturned by the AASHTO Standing Committee on Highways, and the approval for the I-69E, I-69C, and I-69W branch designations were confirmed by the AASHTO Board of Directors, pending concurrence from the Federal Highway Administration during the AASHTO Spring Meeting on May 7, 2013. During this same meeting, the section of US-83 between Harlingen and Palmview was conditionally approved to be designated as Interstate 2 (I-2), with FHWA concurrence. The US-83 freeway in south Texas was widely anticipated to receive an I-x69 designation instead of I-2. In any case, Texas is proceeding in the same fashion as Indiana, conducting environmental studies for its portion of I-69 in a two-tier process. The mainline route through Texas will be approximately 500 miles (800 km). On June 11, 2008, TxDOT announced they planned to limit further study of I-69 to existing highway corridors (US 59, US 77, US 84, US 281, and SH 44) outside transition zones in the lower Rio Grande Valley, Laredo, Houston, and Texarkana.[3]

Texas originally sought a public-private partnership to construct much of the route through Texas as a privately operated toll road under the failed Trans-Texas Corridor project. However, on June 26, 2008, TxDOT announced that they had approved a proposal by Zachry American and ACS Infrastructure to develop the I-69 corridor in Texas, beginning with upgrades to the US 77 corridor between Brownsville and I-37; the Zachry/ACS plan calls for the majority of the freeway to be toll-free; the only two tolled sections would be bypasses of Riviera and Driscoll.[4]

Original plans for the route included a potential overlap with the "TTC-35" corridor component as well, but the preferred alternative for that component follows I-35 south of San Antonio instead of entering the lower Rio Grande Valley.

Status[edit]

TxDOT reported in June 2011 that over 230 miles of the proposed 500-mile I-69 route through the state has been completed.[5]

As of July 2011, Texas has been proceeding with upgrading rural sections of US 59, US 77, and US 281 to interstate standards by replacing intersections with interchanges, and converting 2-lane stretches to 4 lanes by adding a second carriageway to the existing roadway.

A stated goal of TxDOT's I-69 initiative is that "existing suitable freeway sections of the proposed system be designated as I-69 as soon as possible."[6] A bill was introduced and passed by the House of Representatives that allows interstate quality sections of US 59, US 77, and US 281 to be signed as I-69 regardless of whether or not they connected to other interstate highways.

Meanwhile, TxDOT has submitted an application to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) to designate 75 miles of US 59 in the Houston area and 8 miles of US 77 near Corpus Christi as I-69, as these sections are already built to interstate standards and connect to other interstate highways. In August 2011, TxDOT received approval from FHWA for a six-mile segment of US 77 between I-37 and SH 44 near Corpus Christi, and was approved by the AASHTO in October 2011.[7] Officials held a ceremony on December 5, 2011 to unveil I-69 signs on the Robstown-Corpus Christi section.[8] On May 29, 2013, the Robstown-Corpus Christi section of I-69 was re-signed as I-69E.

At the May 18, 2012 meeting of AASHTO, 35 miles of US-59 (Eastex Freeway) from I-610 in Houston (on the loop's northern segment) to Fostoria Road in Liberty County were also approved as ready for I-69 signage, pending concurrence from the Federal Highway Administration.[9] FHWA later granted concurrence and with the final approval of the Texas Transportation Commission, the 35-mile stretch was officially designated as I-69.[10] It was announced on February 6, 2013 that FHWA had approved a 28.4 mile segment of US-59 (Southwest Freeway) from I-610 in Houston (on the loop's western segment) to just southwest of Rosenberg,[11][12] The Texas Transportation Commission gave final approval later that month and signage was erected on April 3, 2013.[13][14] The remaining segment of the original 75-mile submission (the section within Houston between the northern and western sections of I-610) was approved for designation as I-69 by the FHWA on March 9, 2015 and approved for signage as I-69 by the Texas Transportation Commission March 25, 2015.

On May 29, 2013, the Texas Transportation Commission gave approval to naming completed Interstate-standard segments of US 77 and US 281 as I-69. On July 15, 2013, the interstate shields were unveiled.[15] US 77 through Cameron and Willacy counties are signed as I-69E. That includes 53 miles (85 km) of existing freeway starting at the international boundary in the middle of the Rio Grande in Brownsville and running north past Raymondville. The 13 miles (21 km) of US 281 freeway in Pharr and Edinburg are signed as I-69C.[16]

On November 20, 2014, The Texas Transportation Commission voted to add two new sections totaling 6.1 miles to Interstate 69 in South Texas.[17] The first section is 1.6 miles of newly finished freeway near Robstown in Nueces County and was co-designated as I-69E/US 77 [17] and the second section is a 4.5 mile section of new freeway on the north side of Edinburg in Hidalgo County which was co-designated as I-69C/US 281.[17] The designations were recently approved by the Federal Highway Administration and by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials -- the organization which determines highway designation numbering (this action makes a total of 192 miles of the I-69 System route (including Interstate 2) in Texas have been added to the Interstate Highway System).[17]

Exit list[edit]

All exits are unnumbered.

County Location mi km Destinations Notes
Fort Bend Rosenberg US 59 south / Spur 529 north – Victoria south end of US 59 overlap; at-grade intersection; no northbound entrance
Bamore Road Northbound entrance only
SH 36 – Rosenberg, Needville
FM 2218 – Richmond
Reading Road
  FM 762 – Richmond, Rosenberg
  Williams Way Boulevard Access to Oak Bend Medical Center
Sugar Land SH 99 (Frontage Road) / FM 2759 (Crabb River Road) Access to Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Hospital
Brazos River Turnaround
University Boulevard
First Colony Boulevard / Sweetwater Boulevard Access to Methodist Sugar Land Hospital
SH 6 – Sugarland Airport
Sugar Lakes Drive / Williams Trace Boulevard Access to St. Luke's Sugar Land Hospital
Dairy Ashford Road / Sugar Creek Boulevard

Alt. US 90 – Sugar Land, Stafford
Stafford Kirkwood Road / West Airport Boulevard
Harris Houston Wilcrest Drive / Murphy Road (FM 1092 south) / West Bellfort Avenue
Sam Houston Tollway
Beltway 8 (Frontage Road) no direct southbound exit (signed at Wilcrest Drive)
Bissonnet Street
South Gessner Road / Beechnut Street Access to Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital
Fondren Road / Bellaire Boulevard
Hillcroft Avenue
Westpark Tollway east Northbound exit only
Westpark Tollway west Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Westpark Drive no direct northbound exit (signed at Hillcroft Avenue)
Fountainview Drive Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Chimney Rock Road
I-610 – IAH Airport, Hobby Airport I-610 exit 8A
Newcastle Drive no direct northbound exit (signed at Weslayan Road)
Weslayan Road
Edloe Street, Buffalo Speedway
Kirby Drive
Greenbriar Drive / Shepherd Drive
Richmond Avenue / Downtown Houston via Louisiana Street (Spur 527) Northbound exit and southbound entrance
Main Street Northbound exit and southbound entrance, access to Texas Medical Center
Fannin Street Southbound exit and northbound entrance, access to Texas Medical Center
SH 288 south – Lake Jackson, Freeport
McGowen Avenue / Tuam Avenue Southbound exit and northbound entrance, access to St. Joseph Medical Center
Gray Avenue / Pierce Avenue – Downtown Destinations Northbound exit and southbound entrance, access to St. Joseph Medical Center
I-45 – Dallas, Galveston I-45 exits 46A-B, access to George Bush Intercontinental Airport and William P. Hobby Airport
Polk Street – Downtown Destinations Northbound exit only
Jackson Street – Downtown Destinations Southbound exit and northbound entrance
I-10 (US 90) – San Antonio, Beaumont I-10 exits 770A-C
Lyons Avenue / Quitman Street
Collingsworth Street / Kelley Street
Cavalcade Street no direct northbound exit (signed at Collingsworth Street)
I-610 I-610 east exit 20, west exits 20A-B.
Crosstimbers Road / Kelley Street
Laura Koppe Road no direct southbound exit (signed at Tidwell Road)
Tidwell Road
Parker Road / Jensen Drive / Saunders Road
  Little York Road
  Hopper Road no direct northbound exit (signed at Little York Road)
  East Mount Houston Road
  Aldine Mail Route
  Lauder Road no direct northbound exit (signed at Aldine Mail Route)
  Old Humble Road / Lee Road (FM 525 Spur) Northbound exit and southbound entrance
Houston FM 525 (Aldine Bender Road)
Beltway 8 (Sam Houston Parkway)
Beltway 8 (Frontage Road) no direct northbound exit (signed at FM 525)
Greens Road
Humble Rankin Road
Will Clayton Parkway – Bush Intercontinental Airport
FM 1960 / Bus. FM 1960 – Humble Access to Memorial Hermann Northeast Hospital
Townsen Boulevard no direct southbound exit (signed at Hamblen Road / Sorters-McClellan Road)
Montgomery Kingwood Loop 494 / Hamblen Road / Sorters-McClellan Road
Kingwood Drive
Northpark Drive
  FM 1314 – Porter, Conroe No northbound entrance
  Community Drive future SH 99
  FM 1485 / Loop 494 – New Caney
  Loop 494 / Roman Forest Boulevard
Patton Village SH 242
Creekwood Lane
Splendora FM 2090 – Splendora
East River Drive
  Fostoria Road Northbound exit to Fostoria Road
  US 59 north – Cleveland Montgomery County / Liberty County line -- north end of US 59 overlap
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

References[edit]

  1. ^ Clark, Steve (May 29, 2013). "SH 550 Ribbon-Cutting crowd Gets big I-69 News". Brownsville Herald. Retrieved June 5, 2013. 
  2. ^ Minute Order 5 - March 25, 2015, Texas Transportation Commission
  3. ^ Cross, Mark (June 11, 2008). "TxDOT Recommends Narrowing Study Area for Texas Portion of I-69" (Press release). Texas Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on July 5, 2008. 
  4. ^ Staff (June 26, 2008). "Transportation Commission Picks Developer for Texas Portion of I-69". Keep Texas Moving (Texas Department of Transportation). Archived from the original on September 26, 2008. 
  5. ^ Neal, Loyd (June 7, 2011). "So Far 230 miles of Interstate 69 Built". Corpus Christi Caller-Times. 
  6. ^ "What's Next for I-69 Texas?". Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved August 2011. 
  7. ^ "Portion of US 77 Approved as Part of U.S. Interstate System" (Press release). Texas Department of Transportation. Archived from the original on November 2, 2011. Retrieved August 2011. [dead link]
  8. ^ Clark, Steve (October 30, 2011). "First I-69 signs going up on U.S. 77 in December". Brownsville Herald. Retrieved January 1, 2012. 
  9. ^ Vitale, Marty (May 19, 2012). "Report to SCOH" (PDF) (Report). Traverse City, MI: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. 
  10. ^ Staff (July 26, 2012). "35 More Miles of I-69 Route Added to Interstate Highway System" (Press release). Alliance for I-69 Texas. Retrieved January 29, 2013. 
  11. ^ Fikac, Peggy & Begley, Dug (February 6, 2013). "Interstate 69 coming, piece by piece". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved April 12, 2013. 
  12. ^ Media Relations. "I-69 Designation as an Interstate Means More Jobs for Texas and Economic Development in Growing Communities" (Press release). Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved June 5, 2013. 
  13. ^ Staff (February 28, 2013). "Southwest Freeway Now Interstate 69" (Press release). Alliance for I-69 Texas. Retrieved June 5, 2013. 
  14. ^ "28 miles of US Hwy. 59 now Interstate 69". Houston, TX: KPRC-TV. April 3, 2013. Retrieved June 5, 2013. 
  15. ^ Janes, Jared. "Valley's I-69 signage the latest stop along superhighway dream". The Monitor. Retrieved 16 July 2013. 
  16. ^ Essex, Allen (May 30, 2013). "I-69 Comes to the Valley: 111 Miles Added to Interstate System". Valley Morning Star (Harlingen, TX). Retrieved June 3, 2013. 
  17. ^ a b c d "6.1 Miles in Two New Sections Added to I-69". Alliance for I-69 Texas. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Bing


Interstate 69
Previous state:
Terminus
Texas Next state:
Louisiana