Rockwall County Transportation Planning at Work

green-acres
Rockwall Isn’t ‘country’ anymore

Ava Gabor’s line in the Green Acres theme song was, “goodbye, city life”.

I propose a revision of that song for Rockwall County, something like “Hello, city life!”

Lots of folks have discovered how wonderful living is in Rockwall County.

 

Extraction from the Facebook Page of Rockwall County Judge David Sweet 8/19/2016

This was the column in the Rockwall Herald Banner last week addressing transportation improvements in Rockwall County….. (click on this link to the original article to read the full text)

Commissioner David Magness recently made the observation that Lake Ray Hubbard and Interstate 30 are extremely important to Rockwall County: We are defined by our beautiful lake – and if I-30 didn’t go through here, Rockwall County wouldn’t be what it is today.

….

…. TxDOT has announced plans to reconstruct I-30 through Rockwall County as the initial project for the planned upgrade of I-30 from downtown Dallas east to the state line.

I-30 currently carries approximately 100,000 vehicles per day into Rockwall and 50,000 vehicles per day through Fate and Royse City.

The project, which is estimated to cost $750 million, will have no toll components. The project will run from Bass Pro Drive eastward to FM 2642, which is just east of the Rockwall/Hunt County line. The highway will have four lanes each direction from Bass Pro Drive to SH 205 and will have three lane  frontage roads each direction across the lake. The project calls for three main lanes each direction from SH 205 eastward to FM 2642, with new one way  frontage roads across the county. The project scope includes a new westbound entrance ramp between Horizon and FM 740. A public meeting is expected to be held in November, and let date is projected for December 2021.

…..Currently under consideration is the potential to bring John King Blvd. up to state standards so it would become SH-205, thus taking it around the City of Rockwall and out of the center of our historic downtown. That would return Goliad Street, currently designated as SH-205, to the City of Rockwall.

The $200 million project would involve widening SH 205 from a two-lane rural to four lanes urban-divided with allowance for an ultimate six lanes. The project has been divided into two phases, with the southern phase running from SH 80 in Terrell to FM-549, and the northern phase from FM-549 to Lavon. The state is currently doing schematics and engineering for the project. Let date is anticipated to be February 2021.

Proposition 7, which was approved by voters in November 2015, is providing funding for work on these and other state road projects in our area and around the state.

We are proud that there is an incredible relationship between TxDOT and Rockwall County, and that we have worked together with officials from each city in Rockwall County to have a unified transportation plan. We’re also very proud of the vision and teamwork between the county and each one of its cities as we all act as one in prioritization of projects.

Over the next few months  the county will work with engineering firms for the projects and discuss phasing. I-30 must be a user friendly improvement project – that is a priority. We expect any economic impacts to be minimal.

These two major projects will make a positive impact on this wonderful county along with several other road projects also scheduled. If you are interested in learning about any or all of the projects, please go to the county website, rockwallcountytexas.com, and follow the prompts to the road consortium.

My Two Cents

Widening of I-30 will be a mammoth project without which Rockwall will be strangled as dramatic increases in traffic flow bring tandem automobile collisions that send motorists scurrying to Rockwall streets.

Which transportation improvements benefit the people of Rockwall County? Answer: ALL of them, including the John King 205 bypass.

As our burgeoning population strains present roadways, let’s patiently endure roadway construction, keeping in mind the finished product and the manifold benefits of thoroughfares capable of handling high-volume traffic.

Looking beyond the widening of I-30, expect further transportation improvements that will come with the Outer Loop highway that will effectively bifurcate Rockwall County along a north-south route somewhere west of downtown Royse City.

I can think of no road construction that has ever happened without the naysayers resisting improvements. Personally, I am thankful for the long-range planning that keeps North Texas commerce and our people moving freely.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

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