Texas State Highway 121
|Maintained by TxDOT|
|Length:||85.563 mi (137.700 km)|
|Existed:||by 1939 – present|
|Southwest end:||I-35W / US 287 / US 377 / Spur 347 in Fort Worth|
|US 82 in Bonham|
|Northeast end:||SH 78 in Bonham|
State Highway 121 is a state highway angling from southwest to northeast through north central Texas. It runs from downtown Fort Worth, Texas at the junction of Interstate 35W to Bonham, Texas, just north of a junction with U.S. Highway 82.
Between Fort Worth and Euless, SH 121 is known as Airport Freeway (east of Euless, this name applies to SH 183). East of Coppell, the highway acts as the frontage road of the Sam Rayburn Tollway, a tolled freeway that runs northeast to McKinney. From McKinney to Melissa, the state highway is concurrent with US 75 and the North Central Expressway. Northeast of Melissa, SH 121 is a smaller roadway referred to in some places as the Sam Rayburn Highway.
Sections between downtown Fort Worth and Grapevine are freeway, including a small segment near Hurst that coincides with Interstate 820. At Bedford, Texas it has an interchange with SH 183, the Irving freeway that leads toward Dallas; it has an interchange with SH 360, which leads toward Arlington, just to the west of the north entrance to the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, to which State Highway 121 gives access. At Grapevine it has interchanges with SH 114 and Interstate 635 before becoming a limited-access tollway that passes between Lewisville and Frisco.
It is very heavily traveled south and west of McKinney and has become an urban highway due to the rapid growth of the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex. Service roads extending southwest to northeast along the corridor from Lewisville to McKinney are free of charge; however the main lanes within the right-of-way are tolled as part of the Sam Rayburn Tollway operated by the North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA). The highway's northeastern section between Melissa and Bonham carries less traffic and until recently was a two-lane rural highway. However, in recent years with an increase in traffic, the 19 mile section between the Collin-Fannin County line and its junction with SH 56 in Bonham has been upgraded to a "Super Two" highway system. This allows for alternating passing lanes. Beginning in 2016, the segment between Melissa and the Collin-Fannin County line is being upgraded to a four-lane divided highway system. In addition, a two mile stretch between SH 56 and US 82 within Bonham city limits, was upgraded to a four-lane highway system with a continuous left-hand turn lane. Long term planning calls for upgrading the 19 mile stretch, from the Collin-Fannin County line to SH 56 in Bonham, into a four-lane divided highway system.
Construction began in 2009 on the extension of 121 south from Fort Worth to Cleburne, as a toll road called Southwest Parkway in Tarrant County and Chisholm Trail Parkway in Johnson County. This section will be operated by the NTTA and the entire project, from IH 30 to U.S. 67 is expected to open to traffic in the fourth quarter of 2013.
In March, 2009, work was completed on the eventual southbound lanes on a short stretch of 121 northeast of DFW Airport, which currently shares southbound and northbound traffic. This work upgraded two signalized at-grade intersections to a freeway, with overpasses at both intersections, improving traffic in that area. The northbound freeway lanes are currently under construction, which also include new, separate exits and entrances for Freeport Parkway and Grapevine Mills Boulevard/Sandy Lake Road.
Sam Rayburn Tollway
In early 2007, the Spanish firm Cintra agreed to a $2.8 billion, 50-year deal where they would lease the highway from TxDOT, finish building and maintain it, and collect the tolls.  However, critics of the deal questioned both its length—the contract allowed Cintra to collect tolls for 50 years—and the fact that the North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA) was prevented from bidding on the contract. In addition, general opposition to the toll plan organized, pointing out that the segment through Denton County had already been paid for by taxpayer money.
To answer some of these complaints, Texas legislators pressed the Texas Department of Transportation to allow the NTTA to bid. The Authority announced their proposed bid in early May 2007, which would provide approximately $3.3 billion in road funding, but is based on traffic counts that differ from those used by Cintra.
On June 28, 2007, the Texas Transportation Commission announced it would pursue the proposal from the North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA).
SH 121 was originally numbered in 1928 as a direct routing between Fort Worth and McKinney. By 1933, the route had been completed from Ft. Worth northeast through Grapevine to its intersection with U.S. Route 77 in far southern Denton County. In 1943, the ambitious plan to extend SH 121 northeast to Bonham was approved by TXDOT, a part of which absorbed Farm to Market Road 82 between Bonham and Randolph. But it wasn't until 1954 that the next section of this highway was completed between U.S. 77 at Lewisville and U.S. Route 75 near McKinney. The final section between McKinney and Trenton was not completed until 1964, including an extension around the western side of Bonham. In 1965, the section from downtown Fort Worth to Interstate 820 was transferred to newly completed freeway sections.
|Tarrant||Fort Worth||0.0||0.0|| I-35W / US 287 / US 377 south – Waco, Denton
Spur 347 west (Belknap Street) – Downtown Fort Worth
|I-35W exit 52B, access to Fort Worth Intermodal Transportation Center|
|2.7||4.3||Maxine Street||Northbound exit and southbound entrance|
|Haltom City||3.1||5.0||Haltom Road|
|Richland Hills||6.4||10.3||Handley-Ederville Road||Access to Richland Hills Station|
|Hurst||7.3||11.7||I-820 south||south end of I-820 overlap; SH 121 south follows exit 24B|
|SH 10 east / SH 183 west – Richland Hills||south end of SH 183 overlap; I-820 exit 24A|
|8.4||13.5||Pipeline Road / Glenview Drive||I-820 exit 23, access to North Hills Hospital|
SH 121 Express north / SH 183 Express east to FM 157
|northbound exit and southbound entrance; I-820 exit 23A|
|8.5||13.7||SH 26 / FM 1938 north (Davis Boulevard) / Bedford-Euless Road – Colleyville, TCC Northeast Campus||I-820 exit 22B|
|8.9||14.3||I-820 west||north end of I-820 overlap; SH 121 north follows exit 22A|
|10.1||16.3||FM 3029 north (Precinct Line Road) / Hurstview Drive|
|Hurst–Bedford line||11.5||18.5||Norwood Drive / Brown Trail|
|Bedford||12.5||20.1||Bedford Road / Forest Ridge Drive|
|13.0||20.9||Central Drive / Forest Ridge Drive||Access to Texas Health HEB|
|13.6||21.9||SH 183 east – DFW Airport South Entry, Irving||north end of SH 183 overlap; no direct southbound exit (signed at Murphy Drive)|
|14.0||22.5||Westpark Way / Murphy Drive|
SH 121 Express south / SH 183 Express west to I-820
|southbound exit and northbound entrance|
|Bedford–Euless line||16.7||26.9||FM 157 south / Cheek-Sparger Road|
|Euless–Grapevine line||17.2||27.7||Glade Road|
|18.7||30.1||To SH 360 / Stone Myers Parkway||Northbound exit and southbound entrance|
|19.3||31.1||SH 360 south – Arlington||Southbound exit and northbound entrance|
|20.8||33.5||SH 114 west (SH 26 south) to FM 1709 / William D. Tate Avenue – Bridgeport||south end of SH 114 overlap|
SH 26 north / Bus. SH 114 west (Texan Trail) / Main Street – Grapevine Historic District
|no northbound entrance|
|22.4||36.0||SH 114 east – Dallas||North end of SH 114 overlap|
|22.9||36.9||DFW Airport (International Parkway)|
|24.3||39.1||I-635 east||I-635 exit 36|
|24.7||39.8||Bass Pro Drive / Bethel Road / Grapevine Mills Trail|
|25.3||40.7||FM 2499 north (Grapevine Mills Parkway) – Flower Mound||northbound exit and southbound entrance|
|Dallas||Coppell–Grapevine line||26.2||42.2||Grapevine Mills Boulevard / Sandy Lake Road / Freeport Parkway|
Bus. SH 121 north – Lewisville
|Dallas||Coppell–Lewisville line||28.8||46.3||Sam Rayburn Tollway north / Denton Tap Road – McKinney||north end of freeway|
|Denton||Lewisville||30.0||48.3||Sam Rayburn Tollway / MacArthur Boulevard|
|31.1||50.1||Sam Rayburn Tollway south / I-35E (US 77) – Denton, Dallas, D/FW Airport, Fort Worth||south end of Sam Rayburn Tollway overlap; south end of freeway; I-35E exits 447A-447B-448A|
|Carrollton||32.3||52.0||Marchant Boulevard / Huffines Boulevard|
|33.2||53.4||Sam Rayburn Tollway north / Hebron Parkway||north end of Sam Rayburn Tollway overlap; north end of freeway|
|34.3||55.2||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Carrollton Parkway|
|Lewisville||35.1||56.5||Sam Rayburn Tollway south / FM 544|
Sam Rayburn Tollway / Bus. SH 121 south / FM 2281 south – Lewisville
|36.6||58.9||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Standridge Drive / Castle Hills Drive|
|36.9||59.4||Sam Rayburn Tollway / FM 423 north (Main Street) / Josey Lane – Little Elm|
|The Colony||38.3||61.6||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Paige Road / Plano Parkway|
|Sam Rayburn Tollway south||southbound exit and northbound entrance|
|39.9||64.2||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Spring Creek Parkway|
|Collin||Plano–Frisco line||40.7||65.5||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Legacy Drive|
|41.7||67.1||To Dallas North Tollway / Dallas Parkway|
|Sam Rayburn Tollway / Parkwood Boulevard|
|42.8||68.9||Sam Rayburn Tollway north / Dallas North Tollway / SH 289 (Preston Road)|
|Sam Rayburn Tollway / Ohio Drive||interchange|
|43.9||70.7||Sam Rayburn Tollway north / Hillcrest Road / Rasor Boulevard|
|45.2||72.7||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Coit Road|
|46.3||74.5||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Independence Parkway|
|47.2||76.0||Sam Rayburn Tollway south / FM 2478 north (Custer Road)|
|Allen–McKinney line||48.1||77.4||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Exchange Parkway|
|49.0||78.9||Sam Rayburn Tollway north / Alma Drive|
|50.0||80.5||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Stacy Road|
|50.8||81.8||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Watters Road / Lake Forest Drive|
|51.8||83.4||Sam Rayburn Tollway / Chelsea Boulevard / Hardin Boulevard|
|52.9||85.1||US 75 south to SH 5 (via Spur 399 east) – Dallas||south end of US 75 overlap; SH 121 south follows exit 39|
|see US 75|
|Melissa||61.2||98.5||US 75 north – Sherman||north end of US 75 overlap; SH 121 north follows exit 45|
|SH 5 south||south end of SH 5 overlap|
|62.2||100.1||SH 5 north – Melissa, Anna||Interchange; north end of SH 5 overlap|
|63.7||102.5||FM 545 (East Melissa Road) – Melissa, Blue Ridge|
|64.9||104.4||FM 2933 south – New Hope|
|Anna||Outer Loop Road|
|FM 455 west – Anna||south end of FM 455 overlap|
|FM 455 east to FM 2862||north end of FM 455 overlap|
|||71.6||115.2||FM 2862 – Westminster|
|Desert||75.4||121.3||SH 160 – Whitewright, Blue Ridge|
|Fannin||Trenton||FM 814 west||south end of FM 814 overlap|
|FM 814 east – Trenton||north end of FM 814 overlap|
US 69 / Bus. US 69 – Whitewright, Leonard
Bus. SH 121 north
|||86.5||139.2||SH 11 – Sherman, Commerce||Interchange|
Bus. SH 121 south – Randolph
|||90.5||145.6||FM 1629 east – Edhube|
|||93.0||149.7||Spur 311 north to SH 56 west – Sherman, Sam Rayburn House|
|Bonham||93.7||150.8||SH 56 west – Sherman||South end of SH 56 overlap|
|94.2||151.6||SH 56 east – Bonham, Sam Rayburn Library||North end of SH 56 overlap|
|96.1||154.7||US 82 – Sherman, Paris||US 82 exit 670|
|96.9||155.9||FM 898 west – Ector|
|||98.3||158.2||SH 78 – Durant, Bonham|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
- Transportation Planning and Programming Division (n.d.). "State Highway No. 121". Highway Designation Files. Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2010-06-15.
- http://www.ntta.org/NR/rdonlyres/3FFA8F0C-1525-445F-A169-8B47A341B396/0/NTTA_SWPCT_Brief.pdf", Southwest Parkway/Chisholm Trail Project Status Report March 2009 from the NTTA.
- http://www.wfaa.com/video/?z=y&nvid=344241 "Overpasses give non-stop route between Frisco and D/FW", WFAA-TV report, March 20, 2009.
- Google (September 30, 2013). "SH 121" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Texas State Highway 121.|
- Denton & Collin County section of SH 121 - from dfwfreeways.info