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Ground broken on another stretch of the $3 billion I-35 double decker project

Images shows the latest stretch of I-35 to be turned into a double decker freeway
Images shows the latest stretch of I-35 to be turned into a double decker freeway

Ground was broken on Tuesday on another stretch of the $3 billion I-35 double decker project.

State transportation officials were joined by local and state dignitaries in Northeast San Antonio to officially launch the $700 million project.

The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) reports four miles of two main lanes and one high-occupancy lane or HOV lane will be constructed in each direction above the existing lanes of I-35.

The project focuses on a stretch between I-35's Loop 410 South and Loop 410 North interchanges on the Northeast Side.

It's part of five other phases of work, formally called the I-35 NEX Program by TxDOT, to turn I-35 into a double decker freeway from near JBSA-Fort Sam Houston to FM 1103 at Cibolo.

It's a distance of 20 miles and passes through Bexar, Comal, and Guadalupe County. The county lines of all three converge in Schertz.

The number of vehicles on I-35 through that area is expected to double to more than 400,000 by 2044, according to TxDOT.

J. Bruce Bugg, Jr., the chairman of the Texas Transportation Commission, told TPR the project will ease congestion and keep the Texas economy booming.

"We are the eighth largest economy in the entire world ... so we have to keep our transportation system up to standard," he said.

He said a historic $40 billion's worth of projects are in the works to keep up with massive population growth across the state as part of the Texas Clear Lanes project that focuses on the worst transportation chokepoints in the state.

State Rep. Barbara Gervin-Hawkins, who represents much of the Northeast Side, said the project will also help large trucks get in and out of the warehouses that line the freeway.

"My district has a lot of warehouses ... and one of the things that has been a traffic jam is the big wheelers, and so this project will help release some of that pressure," she said.

Bugg said TxDOT plans to complete the $3 billion project by 2028.

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