DFW Connector So Far

We are now roughly four months into the DFW Connector construction project.  We thought we’d give an update since we drive through the 114/121 interchange on a daily basis.

So far there has been a massive amount of orange cone shuffling and dirt moving with very little impact on our daily commute.  Northgate Contractors have done really well in holding up their end of the bargain on keeping the highways open between 6 am and 8 pm each day.  The one slip up may have occurred earlier this week according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram where a lane remained closed until almost 7 am.  We certainly did not notice the closure or any difference in traffic and we usually make it through there around 7:15 am.

The contractors have turned an old car dealership along the service road of 121 into what appears to be a main base camp.  There are too many orange pickup trucks there to count.  And they have almost completed a huge storage area along 121 South near the exit to Highway 360.

All of this progress has come in a short amount of time.  We are impressed that the contractors have been able to keep traffic flowing so smoothly during the day.  The same can not be said at night around 8 pm when some of the lanes start to shut down, but that was part of the deal.  They have to work some time.  We do not recommend coming through that area after 8 pm because there are usually delays.  In fact, we pretty much have learned to avoid that area after 8 pm.

Thanks go out to Northgate Contractors who are making a tremendous amount of progress on the DFW Connector with little added stress to the daily commuter.

DFW Connector Project to Start in February 2010

Okay, we have two months to map out all the back roads, side streets, and short cuts around Grapevine.  The final approvals to start the DFW Connector project were given by the Texas Department of Transportation on Tuesday.  This $1 billion, four year project will mean constant construction zones around Grapevine.

The good news is that part of the construction agreement requires that the same number of lanes that are open currently will remain open during the project.  The bad news is we will still have work zones and the likely hood of narrow lanes and redirected lanes as construction progresses.

In addition to Highways 114 and 121, here are the other highways that will be affected according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

Other highways in that corridor between Southlake and Irving include Interstate 635, Texas 360 and 26, and Farm Roads 2499 and 1709.

One of the most interesting items in the article is that the DFW Connector project is receiving more federal stimulus money than any other highway project in the country.

The project will be funded by $667 million in state highway money, $250 million in federal Recovery Act funding and $107 million in bond funding from Proposition 14, which was approved by Texas voters in 2003 to improve mobility statewide. The DFW Connector is getting more stimulus money than any other highway project in the country.

We are happy this much needed project is finally about to begin. It will be a long four years, but Christmas is right around the corner. Here’s hoping we all get a new GPS system in our stockings.