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April 29, 2008

Two more toll roads in the works

Tx170 Tx360 Environmental studies approved by the federal government years ago for future freeway extensions of Texas 170 near Alliance Airport and Texas 360 in Arlington/Mansfield will be updated so the projects may be built as toll roads.
The Texas Department of Transportation, which owns the right-of-way and existing frontage roads for both projects, on Tuesday gave the North Texas Tollway Authority permission to conduct the environmental studies. The roads have already passed environmental muster once before, but federal law requires that the records be updated if a project is changed from a freeway to a toll road, a state official said.
The roads are among more than a dozen projects the tollway authority intends to undertake in the coming years to improve mobility in the Metroplex.
The transportation department also asked the tollway authority to provide a timeline for conducting a market valuation of both roads. State law requires the two agencies to mutually agree on a valuation — or dollar value — before a road can be built as a toll project. Why? In many cases, tolls can be used to pay for not only the road in question, but also other roads in the region. GORDON DICKSON, 817-685-3816

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Comments

Roxie

I apologize for putting this question in the comments, but couldn't seemed to find an email link for you.

I heard Eddie Gosage(sp) of Texas Motor Speedway speak about the possibility of adding a commuter rail stop at TMS. Have you heard anything about that? Who would I contact to voice support for such a move?

TIA.

Gordon

Roxie: This is a good place as any to talk about it. Eddie Gossage favors a rail connection but he wants someone else -- most likely the Fort Worth Transportation Authority -- to pay the cost of building a half-mile railroad spur from the BNSF railroad tracks to the speedway property. Right now the FWTA (the T) doesn't have the money. My guess is that it'll get done in the next 10-15 years, but that's only a guess. In the mean time, the T does run shuttle buses from the TCC-NW campus off Marine Creek Parkway to the speedway on race days. It's $10 a person. There's also been some talk about the T building a commuter rail line up the Alliance area that would be open to commuting traffic every day, and not just on race days. But right now that's just hopeful talk.

Gordon

Oh, and if you want to contact someone about it call the T at 817-215-8600 and leave a message for T president Dick Ruddell, public affairs director Joan Hunter or T chairman Robert Parmelee.

Roxie

I am interested in the daily commuter option. The rail option for TMS race events would be nice, but really inconsequential for the amount of traffic/people that it would move.

SGillette

Give me a 70+ mph speed limit on that toll road and you won't hear a complaint from me. Build it like any regular Texas road with two lanes merged into 1 at any major choke point and I demand a recount when it comes to you getting your engineering degree.........

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